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Human Impact - the hidden signs in nature

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21 May 2019




21:00 (more or less) 

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The Sister Brussels Café

Rue chair et pain 3, 1000 Brussels






Us humans have changed the natural world so much that scientists have started referring to this point in time as the Anthropocene – the era of humanity shaping the climate and environment. Join us to discover how humanity’s goal for ever more renewable energy is changing Belgium’s marine ecology, as well as how researching previous mass extinctions help us to see the hidden signs of what we're now doing to the earth.

Wind farms: destructive or constructive?

Steven DeGraer

Head of the marine ecology and management section

Royal Belgian Institute of Natural Sciences

When the first offshore wind farms were installed, many uncertainties and concerns about their impact onto the marine environment were raised. Since then, there's been a lot of scientific research done on these impacts in Belgium and beyond. We now have a good view on the relationship between offshore wind farms and the natural environment.

This presentation will give a summary of what we know about these impacts, both negative and positive. It will zoom into various examples of impacts, highlight the duality of impact evaluation and what we can do to lessen the negative and promote the positive impacts.

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A history of destruction: What past environmental disasters can tell us about modern and future climate change

Lawrence Percival

Postdoctoral fellow

Vrije Universiteit Brussel

Modern climate change poses a threat to both Earth’s surface environment and the species that live in it, with increasing extinctions. Predicting how extinctions and climate changes will develop in the future is difficult, but one way to gain an idea is to examine past mass extinctions on Earth. This talk will look at two of the greatest and most famous previous extinctions: the demise of the dinosaurs, and the earlier crisis that began their reign. How can we tell what caused those mass extinctions? What's the link to climate change? And what can we learn from this to understand how modern climate change will develop?

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Singing it out - Where have all the larvae gone, long time drifting?

Marc Kochzius

Professor of Marine Biology

Vrije Universiteit Brussel

Marine biology conservation is no joke, but a serious and responsible research field. Earth is an ocean planet. The ocean is teeming with life. How does life disperse in the ocean? - Larvae. Where all these tiny little larvae are coming from and where they are going? Let me take you on a journey through the deep blue sea. But don't be mistaken - this is not going to be a usual talk - we are going to do it the only right way to speak of the sea - with song!

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