Know Underwater – What Can Algae Tell Us?
March 22 @ 6:00 pm - 7:00 pm
Explore the future of aquatic ecosystems with algae research.
This is an in-person program. Masks are optional at all in-person library events.
Algae come in all shapes and sizes, ranging from single spherical microscopic cells to forests of giant kelp that can extend up to 60 m. Collectively, this diverse array of aquatic plants fuel food webs and are a key part of the global carbon cycle. Researchers have a wide range of technologies (from satellites to remotely operated submarines) that they use to observe microscopic algae called plankton that live in the surface waters of lakes, rivers, and oceans. This allows them to study how plankton respond to changes in their environment and what that could mean for the future climate and health of aquatic ecosystems. Macroalgae (seaweeds) could also play an important role in our future as part of a more sustainable diet or as a tool to combat the increasing amount of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere.
James Fox is a research associate in the department of microbiology at Oregon State University. He received his doctorate from the University of Essex in England where he studied marine science and is currently involved in projects ranging from the monitoring of toxic algal blooms in Oregon lakes to the impact of global climate change on ocean biology. Recently he started working with an Oregon-based start-up to help grow seaweed that can be used to reduce greenhouse gas emissions in cattle and provide an alternative source of protein to meat and soy.
Presented in collaboration with The Roundhouse Foundation, a private family foundation based in Sisters, Oregon that supports creative solutions to the unique challenges associated with rural culture and the landscapes of the Pacific Northwest. For more information visit their website at http://www.RoundhouseFoundation.org.