Environment lunch and learn talks to start next Thursday
An environmental group has teamed up with Bermuda College to bring back a series of events designed to educate people about the environment.
The Eco Lunch and Learn series, a joint effort with the Bermuda Environmental Sustainability Taskforce, will start next Thursday with a presentation on Bermuda’s turtles by Jennifer Gray, the director of the Bermuda Turtle Project.
Amy Harvey, an earth and environmental science lecturer at the college, said: “Turtles worldwide are threatened with some 61 per cent of existing species currently considered endangered.
“These majestic creatures have survived millennia but will they survive the threats imposed on them by us modern humans?
“Habitat destruction, overexploitation and climate change are some of the anthropocentric causes for their demise.”
Dr Harvey added that turtles played a crucial role in the marine ecosystem and the environment as a whole.
She said: “They help to increase the productivity of sea grasses as well as help maintain healthy reefs. Both seagrasses and reefs are integral in carbon cycling and helping to buffer against the impacts of climate change.
“Bermuda has been a trailblazer in the protection of sea turtles since the early 1600s. Long may it continue as the survival of turtles is integral to the overall health of our marine ecosystems.”
Jennifer Flood, the executive officer of BEST, added that turtles had survived the mass extinctions that killed off dinosaurs, but human interference had created a new threat to their survival.
She said: “They did not fare so well once humans arrived in Bermuda, when turtles were seen as an easy, abundant food source.
“The more we learn about them the more remarkable they become. Jennifer has spent decades with the turtles and will be sharing her wealth of information with us.
“We owe it to turtles and future generations that they should not only continue to visit us here, but hopefully begin breeding once again.”
The Eco Lunch and Learn with Ms Gray — The Rise and Fall of Bermuda’s Sea Turtles will be held online between 1pm and 2pm on the Bermuda College Facebook and YouTube pages.
The audience will be encouraged to submit questions in the chat sections on both channels.