Crisis in Biodiversity: Can Nature and People thrive?

Date: Tue, 22 October 2019
Time: 12pm - 2pm
Location: University of Ottawa Desmarais Building, Room (DMS 12102)
Address: 55 Laurier Avenue East, Ottawa, Ontario K1N 6N5

The most formidable barriers to saving nature appear to be political, not scientific or technical.  Nowhere is this more strikingly demonstrated than in the Amazon Rainforest where catastrophic fires, started with the active encouragement of governments, are destroying the “lungs of the planet.” The May 2019 report of the UN Intergovernmental Science-Policy Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services paints a grim picture. Globally around 1 million animal and plant species are threatened with extinction. Over 80 per cent of global wastewater is being discharged back into the environment without treatment, while 300-400 million tons of heavy metals, solvents, toxic sludge, and other wastes from industrial facilities are dumped into the world's waters each year. 

The challenge to global and national environmental governance is to develop effective solutions to the crisis and to activate political support for such action.  Among the bold solutions being offered is the allocation of half of the planet's surface to nature. A two-year process to develop a new global plan for nature was launched last fall at the UN Biodiversity Conference in Egypt, and Canada was appointed co-chair of this international effort.  You are invited to join a panel of experts to discuss solutions for effectively reversing the crisis. 


  • Jeremy Kerr, uOttawa Department of Biology
  • Craig Stewart, Insurance Bureau of Canada
  • Basile Van Havre, Environment and Climate Change Canada
  • Alison Woodley, Canadian Parks and Wilderness Society
  • A fifth panelist is to be confirmed.

A light meal will be served.

The panel discussion will be in English only.

For additional information please contact: Gordon DiGiacomo,

Click here for registration

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