Jon White – From the President’s Office: 10-21-2019

2019-10-21T16:16:51+00:00 October 21, 2019|

Searching For The Fountain Of Youth Truth

Sixty years ago last Saturday, I was born in Panama City, Florida. It was rather fitting to head back to my home state recently to participate in the second annual Climate Correction conference in Orlando. A partnership between the VoLo Foundation and the University of Central Florida Sustainability Initiatives, Climate Correction is focused on collaboration around solutions to the changing climate. It was exciting to hear so many experts speak, not just about the impacts of climate change, but about the solutions — covering topics ranging from ocean health and healthcare to agriculture and the economy.

One partial solution that has started to take hold in some coastal states is the designation of a chief resilience officer (CRO). In fact, earlier this summer, Florida’s governor named Dr. Julia Nesheiwat as the state’s first CRO and tasked her with “preparing Florida for the environmental, physical, and economic impacts of sea level rise.” While many cities have adopted CROs, it is rarer for states to have them, with governors in Louisiana, North Carolina, and Rhode Island joining Florida in creating CRO positions. It’s nice to note that these appointments are happening in states with both Republican and Democratic governors. Sixty years ago, we were in the early stages of understanding changes to the Earth’s climate and our role in influencing the changes. I am optimistic that in another 60 years, we’ll be seeing (well, maybe not “we”) a more sustainable future thanks to the implementation of solutions being developed today.

Member Highlight
Coral Reef Starter Kit: New Study Shows Coral Reef Fish Do Not Mind 3D-printed Corals
Researchers across the globe are searching for ways to help endangered reefs, and the animals that live there, withstand or recover from weather events, including bleaching and storms that can occur with increasingly warmer water temperatures. One idea is to use 3D-printed coral models to replace or supplement coral reef systems that have been affected. New research by the University of Delaware’s Danielle Dixson and UD alumnus Emily Ruhl has shown that 3D-printed objects do not impact the behavior of coral-associated damselfish or the survival of a settling stony coral.

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