Biodiversity | WAMC

Biodiversity

Cary Institute of Ecosystem Studies President Josh Ginsburg (upper right); Drs. Rick Ostfeld and Felicia Keesing
Courtesy of the Cary Institute of Ecosystem Studies/Screenshot WAMC, Allison Dunne

The Cary Institute of Ecosystem Studies is examining the role of biodiversity in preventing pandemics. On a recent virtual discussion, two disease ecologists addressed the topic of infectious disease spillovers, and spoke about the pathogens that cause diseases like COVID-19.

As humanity marches on, causing mass extinctions and destabilizing the climate, the future of Earth will very much reflect the stories that Homo sapiens decides to jettison or accept today into our collective identity. At this pivotal moment in history, the most important story we can be telling ourselves is that humans are not inherently destructive.

In "Changing Tides" Alejandro Frid tackles the big questions: who, or what, represents our essential selves, and what stories might allow us to shift the collective psyche of industrial civilization in time to avert the worst of the climate and biodiversity crises?

WAMC's Dr. Alan Chartock discusses reports that President Trump is prepared to impose more tariffs on China, and that Chinese spies obtained and used the National Security Agency's hacking tools. He also comments on a new poll putting former Vice President Joe Biden ahead of U.S. Senator Bernie Sanders in the Democratic presidential race, and the renaming of a school in Great Barrington, Massachusetts. 

flickr, www.worldislandinfo.com

A new study published this week and led by a Bard College biology professor shows catastrophic flooding can be mitigated by protecting biodiversity.  WAMC’s Hudson Valley Bureau Chief Allison Dunne spoke with the lead author, who says though the flooding was studied in Germany, there could be comparisons to the Hudson Valley.

Studying the DNA of the ancient Amborella flower is opening up new insights into the evolution of certain plants and animals.

The University at Buffalo's Dr. Victor Albert is looking deeply into the ancient origins of this Amborella and working to sequence its genome in order to better understand how life has developed on Earth.

Rising temperatures are threatening the biodiversity of the Arctic.

Dr. Hans Meltofte, senior scientist at Denmark's Aarhus University, describes the negative impact of climate change in this area as "already visible" and details the serious ecological consequences that are resulting.