April 25, 2020
ASU Center for Biodiversity Outcomes Founding Director Leah Gerber was interviewed by ASU Now regarding her recently published Issues in Science and Technology op-ed titled “A Global Strategy for Preventing the Next Pandemic.” In this publication, Gerber proposes a global body to monitor and enforce wildlife trafficking to prevent future pandemics.
Many scientists have found that past diseases have been linked to wild animal markets, including the recent coronavirus pandemic. Past evidence has predicted these outbreaks, but nothing has been done to prevent them from occurring.
Now is the time to act.
Optimized enforcement protocols to ban wildlife trafficking, such as the ones Gerber proposes, are the solution. Organized, world-wide action could reverse disease trajectory if we invest in biodiversity conservation and restore wildlife habitats.
If we don’t act now to prevent environmental degradation, we should expect further diseases to ensue.