Polar bears scavenge on garbage to cope with climate change

STORY: Climate change is forcing polar bears to eat trash

according to a new report published in the journal Oryx

The bears usually rely on sea ice to hunt seals

but with the Arctic warming four times faster than the rest of the world

sea ice melting earlier in summer and freezing up later in fall

This forces polar bears to spend more time ashore

hunting out landfills near northern communities for sustenance

The phenomenon has led to deadly conflicts with people, the report said

Consuming garbage can also make bears sick

Waste management remains a challenge for remote communities

The ground is often frozen, making it hard to bury garbage

and trucking it out is expensive

Federal funding will be required to fix the problem, scientists say

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