Interview of the Week: Dr. Neil Vora

Preventing and preparing for pandemics is now a crucial task for world leaders. A crucial part of preventing pandemics is the protection of nature and the conservation of biodiversity. This week we had a chance to ask Conservation International’s new pandemic prevention fellow, Dr. Neil Vora, about why safeguarding our natural world is so important to ensuring that zoonotic diseases aren’t readily spreading from animals to people.

Our health as humans is linked to the health of animals and the planet. The list of severe infectious diseases that have animal origins is really profound: everything from Ebola to SARS to Zika, and it’s very likely the case that COVID originated from animals. The destruction of nature, and in particular the clearing of rainforest, is putting humans in close contact with wildlife and creating those contact opportunities for the viruses to jump over.”

Check out the full interview learn more about how we prevent “pathogen spillover.”

Up Next

“Tick Time Bomb” to Explode in California This Summer

“Tick Time Bomb” to Explode in California This Summer

by Natasha Lasky, ODP Staff Writer The Weather Channel broadcast that this summer, the U.S will be a “tick time-bomb,” in that ticks will afflict much broader swathes of the country than in years previous. Even in dry states like California, which is in a historic drought, researchers have been seeing more ticks than ever, […]

Continue Reading 497 words
Infrastructure Could Include Bike and Pedestrian Paths As Well As Highways

Infrastructure Could Include Bike and Pedestrian Paths As Well As Highways

Greenways are bike paths that often serve as multi-use, car-free ways to navigate a city. Right now, the U.S. network “comprises a similarly haphazard collection of park-like bicycle- and pedestrian-oriented paths,” as CityLab reports, but that could change if environmental and transportation advocates can land $10 billion for a Greenway Stimulus in the infrastructure deal being negotiated in Congress right now.

Why This Matters: Getting people out of cars and into other modes of getting around is one of the best ways to ramp down carbon emissions in the transportation sector as well as ramp up health and fitness.

Continue Reading 498 words
AI, Citizen Science Helps Fight Mosquito-Borne Disease

AI, Citizen Science Helps Fight Mosquito-Borne Disease

by Amy Lupica, ODP Staff Writer Mosquito season is here, and with it, worry about diseases like Zika and West Nile. At the same time, it’s tricky to track and monitor mosquitos and the diseases they spread.  But a new approach using artificial intelligence could finally help researchers better understand how and where the insects are making […]

Continue Reading 544 words

Want the planet in your inbox?

Subscribe to the email that top lawmakers, renowned scientists, and thousands of concerned citizens turn to each morning for the latest environmental news and analysis.