Climate change won’t just bring rising sea levels and more extreme weather — it could also impact your dinner plate.
A new University of Toronto study suggests that a warmer world will decrease the availability of a nutrient that is key to development and brain health. The study, published in the journal Ambio, investigates worldwide production of docosahexaenoic acid (DHA), a naturally occurring essential omega-3 fatty acid. The group of molecules is needed for higher-level brain functioning and cognition, memory, eyesight, particularly at crucial stages in fetal brain development.
Today we’re facing a whole slew of social, economic and environmental crises – gun violence, climate change, gender inequality, job dislocation, food insecurity, plastic pollution and the opioid epidemic, to name just a few.
The responses from governments are often inadequate. Indeed, the problems are so complex that no single sector can address these challenges alone. Policies may not go far enough, or simply cannot address the entire issue. And, as we are seeing in the United States, governments may actually be pulling back on regulations meant to address these crises.
The University of Toronto has been recognized as one of Canada’s Greenest Employers in 2019 for the sixth consecutive year.
This designation, issued by editors of the Canada’s Top 100 Employers project at Mediacorp Canada Inc., recognizes employers who are leaders in developing exceptional sustainability initiatives and creating a culture of environmental awareness in their organizations.
Katharina Braeutigam, a plant epigeneticist at the University of Toronto, wants to grow trees fit for a future climate.
By studying plants at the molecular level, Braeutigam looks at how trees respond to external signals such as drought, and how they record “memories” of stress. She also researches how they respond to internal signals – specifically those that determine sex.
They weren’t getting it.
I had a room full of bright first-year university students in front of me, but confusion reigned as I tried to describe how embedded fossil fuels are in every aspect of society.
“OK, let’s try this. What do you call a car that uses both gasoline and battery power?” Relieved to be asked a question they could confidently answer, a few students piped up: “Hybrid car!”
“Right. Now, what do you call a car that you plug in?” The number of students joining the chorus grew: “Electric car!”
“Right again. So, what do you call a car that runs only on gasoline?” The response was a bit delayed this time, but some wry smiles of understanding accompanied the answer: “A car.”
To accelerate climate-conscious investment, we need to actively engage Canadians in the climate opportunity and make their stake in fighting climate change more tangible.