Marine Biological Laboratory Warns of Climate Change Consequences

WOODS HOLE – More than 30 microbiologists from nine countries have issued a joint statement warning that omitting microbes, the support system of the biosphere, from the climate change equation will have major negative consequences.  

“Scientist’s Warning to Humanity: Microorganisms and Climate Change” was published Tuesday, June 18th in the journal “Nature Reviews Microbiology.”

Among the authors involved is David Mark Welch, director of a world-leading center for microbial ecology, the Josephine Bay Paul Center at the Marine Biological Laboratory in Woods Hole.  

“This consensus statement looks to place microbes at the center of the world stage in terms of importance to climate change biology,” the scientist write.

“We must learn not just how microbes impact climate change, but also how microbes will be impacted by climate change and other human activates.”

Lead scientist for the statement, Professor Rick Cavicchioli of the School of Biotechnology and Biomolecular Sciences at UNSW Sydney calls microbes the “unseen majority” of lifeforms on earth.

“They support the existence of all higher lifeforms and are critically important in regulating climate change,” said Cavicchiolo.

“This statement emphasizes the need to investigate microbial responses to climate change and to include microbe-based research during the development of policy and management decisions.”

Scientists at the Marine Biological Laboratory in Woods Hole co-directed the “International Census of Marine Microbes (2000-2010” which played an instrumental role in the “Human Microbiome Project” for the National Institutes of Health and have continued to be leaders in the field of microbiology.

Microbiologist can endorse the researchers’ warning by becoming a signatory at www.babs.unsw.edu.au/research/microbiologist-warning-humanity.

About Rob Woodard

Rob Woodard has been reporting on news for the CapeCod.com NewsCenter for five years. Listen to his news reporting on 99.9 the Q, Ocean 104.7, Cape Country 104, Cape Classical 107.5 and here on CapeCod.com.



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