I'll stand for a lot of things, but polar bear slander is not one of them. So when I noticed this "story" about our beloved bears of the polar variety possibly going full human eater thanks to climate change, I was skeptical. Sadly, the headlines are true. Polar bears may very well waltz up and munch on us in the future.
In a new research paper cited by the Washington Post Thursday, the polar bear dilemma has been given a maddening update. The paper, delightfully entitled "Polar Bear Attacks on Humans: Implications of a Changing Climate," was put together by researchers representing wildlife agencies and similar groups from Norway, Canada, the United States, and other countries.
But before we dive into this, let's get one thing out of the way: Fuck humans. We're the worst. We ruin everything.
According to the paper, as temperatures rise, so too will the polar bear's need to "interact" with humans. Part of this interaction, researchers say, may include an increase in full-on attacks and subsequent eating.
Those handy pieces of floating ice that bears are known to use to ease the process of hunting? Warmer temperatures, of course, aren't kind to them. Thus, the polar bear has to switch up the method. "They're more likely to try new things, and sometimes, that might be us," study co-author Geoff York, of Polar Bears International, told the Post.
The data compiled for the paper shows the highest number of polar bear attacks (15) happened between 2010-2014 thanks to historically lengthy ice-free periods of shittiness. Add to this the fact that humans—in all our horribleness—have recently been increasing our presence in arctic areas, and you've got all the ingredients for just one facet of exactly what every self-respecting scientist has been warning us about for eons.