Dr. Horsfield To Speak At ‘Eco Lunch & Learn’

November 23, 2019

The Bermuda Environmental Sustainability Taskforce [BEST] and Bermuda College have kicked off a new season of their Eco Lunch & Learn Series II, with Dr. Dörte Horsfield to speak at the November 28 event.

A spokesperson said, “This second series has so far inspired and encouraged attendees with presentations by Walter H. Roban speaking about Government’s environmental policies and position on sustainability, followed by farmer Chris Faria, who spoke about the biointensive method of growing as much organic food as possible in the smallest amount of space for a healthier community.

On Thursday, November 28, Dr. Dörte Horsfield will be presenting a lecture on ‘Island Biodiversity and the Movement of Species’.”

Dr. Horsfield said, “Species are on the move worldwide and Bermuda’s biodiversity has been under great pressure from invasive species, habitat change, development and over-exploitation. How has the biological diversity of the island’s ecosystem changed since the arrival of the Sea Venture?

“What lessons can we learn from other islands and what action for sustainable development can we take to ensure the survival of Bermuda’s fragile endemic species.”

The spokesperson said, “Dr. Dörte Horsfield is the Director of Education at The Bermuda National Trust. For almost seven years she has focused on sustaining and developing The Bermuda National Trust’s education programme. Dr. Horsfield provides experiential learning opportunities for students, STEM education and adult learning experiences.

“She and her team lead natural and cultural history field trips to The Bermuda National Trust’s sites and teach about the importance of environmental conservation. She holds a doctorate in Marine Biology from the University of Hamburg, Germany.”

Amy Harvey, the Earth and Environmental Science lecturer at the Bermuda College, said, “We are living in a time where mass extinction is being caused by mankind at rates never seen before. According to the Intergovernmental Science-Policy Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services [IPBES] report this May there are over one million species currently threatened with extinction. Biodiversity is under threat in a time when we need it the most, especially with the impacts of Climate Change happening in real time.

“Bermuda’s biodiversity is so important for protecting our shores against rising tides and increased storm damage. Hurricane Humberto showed that many of our local endemics and natives were the most resilient to salt spray and high winds.

“As a nation we need to think about how to protect and increase the natives and endemics that we depend on. We also need to continue the fight against the invasive species that compete with them to ensure the health of our local ecosystems.”

Kim Smith, Executive Director of BEST, said, “Dr. Horsfield will tell us what biodiversity is and why it is important. I’m sure she will also give some ideas as to what we as individuals can do to protect our country’s biodiversity.”

According to the Earth Institute at Columbia University, “Biodiversity is disappearing at 1,000 times the normal rate due to human civilization. Individual species are being obliterated by habitat loss and degradation, invasive species, the spread of pollution and disease, climate change and the over exploitation of resources.

“And because the human population, which has doubled since 1970, is expected to reach 9 billion by 2050, the biodiversity crisis will only get worse as more people consume more resources. What can we as individuals do to help slow the loss of biodiversity? Since consumption of resources is a root cause of biodiversity loss, we can consume less and be more mindful about what we consume.”

The spokesperson said, “BEST and Bermuda College are committed to providing a forum for learning; with knowledge comes empowerment. In each of the presentations we invite the community to learn more about global and local issues while discussing individual and collective solution-based actions that can be taken.

“The November 28 lecture will be held at Bermuda College, Room H100 in Hallett Hall, from 1.00pm to 2.00pm. All are welcome.

“For more information, please visit here.”

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