CFAES sustainability news, Dec. 9, 2020

The world’s soil champion

Wicked Leeks (UK), Dec. 4; featuring Rattan Lal, School of Environment and Natural Resources

Scientist Linda Saif has been a trusted partner during pandemic

Farm and Dairy, Nov. 28; featuring Linda Saif, Food Animal Health Research Program

COVID-19 pandemic worsening food insecurity

Farm and Dairy, Nov. 26; featuring Zoe Plakias, Department of Agricultural, Environmental, and Development Economics

COVID-19 and resilient food systems

CFAES’ 14th annual Stinner Summit will focus on COVID-19. What has it shown about the fragility of our food system? How can the system be made more resilient?

The event, whose theme is “Adapting Ohio Agroecosystems for Resilience to the Pandemic and Other Natural Disasters,” will be held online from 1–4 p.m. on Friday, Oct. 16.

Participation is free and open to all. Learn more and register to join us.

Healthy trees, healthy campuses

The Buckeyes take care of their buckeyes, and also their maples and oaks.

The Arbor Day Foundation has given Tree Campus USA honors to both the Ohio State Columbus campus and the CFAES Wooster campus. The recognition means that the campuses met core standards for keeping their trees healthy. Healthy trees in turn give benefits to people, air, and water.

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Answering reporters’ coronavirus questions

CFAES’ Linda Saif, an international expert on coronaviruses and Distinguished University Professor, has been rightly extremely busy lately answering reporters’ questions, including “Can pigs catch COVID-19?” “Can pets get coronavirus from humans?” and “Can veterinarians prevent the next pandemic?”

You can learn more about Saif’s and her colleagues’ expertise on coronaviruses here, and if you’re a journalist and want to ask them questions, their contact information is there, too.

Saif gave a good backgrounder on coronavirus biology, genetics, and related matters in a recent webinar, which you can watch in the video above.

When might the drug-based cavalry be coming?

Toledo Blade journalist Tom Henry talked to CFAES scientist Linda Saif, among others, for a March 20 story titled “Cavalry isn’t here yet: Coronavirus-killing drugs are still being sought.”

Saif is a Distinguished University Professor with CFAES’ Food Animal Health Research Program, a member of Ohio State’s Infectious Diseases Institute, a co-director of the institute’s Viruses and Emerging Pathogens Program, and an international expert on several types of viruses including coronaviruses.

Read the story.

Something to do while you’re staying at home

The video above, by CFAES horticulture educator Pam Bennett, is seven years old, but the suggestions are still good today. Now’s the time of year to get your garden ready for spring, and, with Ohio’s coronavirus “stay at home” order about to begin, you might have some time for a good head start.

Bennett is also the program director of our state Master Gardener Volunteers program, and if you’re interested in joining and serving with the program at some point down the road, you can learn more about it here.

Tonight: Hear from real-life ‘Dark Waters’ hero

The 2018 documentary The Devil We Know screens at 7 p.m. tonight, Tuesday, March 3, in Ohio State’s Environmental Film Series. The event’s website describes the film this way: “Lax oversight of industrial pollutants in West Virginia and corporate greed contributed to the death of cattle and cancer in people. A Cincinnati corporate attorney decided to help local residents.” That attorney, Rob Billott, will appear in person at the screening.

Billott’s memoir detailing the case, titled Exposure: Poisoned Water, Corporate Greed, and One Lawyer’s Twenty-Year Battle against Du Pont, inspired the 2019 major motion picture Dark Waters, which starred Mark Ruffalo as Billott.

Admission to the screening is free and open to the public. Get details.

CFAES experts can comment on coronavirus

Zoonotic disease experts from CFAES are available to comment to the media about the new coronavirus that has emerged from China.

Zoonotic diseases are diseases that spread between animals and humans.

A Jan. 26 Washington Post story said evidence has emerged that the new, potentially dangerous coronavirus “was transmitted to humans through a market in the city of Wuhan that traded in game meat.”