School is visited by Dr Canney
Tuesday 15th May 2012
The school was recently visited by Dr Canney, Research Associate at the University of Oxford and General Adviser and Project Leader for WILD's Mali Elephant Project, who came to share her completely different attitude towards our planet. I can safely say that neither I, nor many of my peers, had ever thought about what global effects our small, personal actions such as upgrading our mobiles could have.
It was fascinating to learn how the money made from coltan, a mineral used in mobile phones, is fuelling the Civil War in the Republic of Congo. Miles of forests are being cut down to make space for more mines; this in turn forces native people to fish for food rather than hunt land animals. We were told that overfishing subsequently leads to a dramatic increase in the jelly fish population. I found this incredible, and a much needed wake-up call.
The knowledge that Dr Canney passed on through her talk was really beautiful. For example, showing us how the largest organism on earth (a fungus covering over 25 square kilometres) connects up all the trees in the forest; resulting in a transport system for minerals between trees and between the fungus and the trees.
Following Dr Canney's visit, I think we were all left with a different perspective of the earth and see it as more of a living system rather than a planet with things living on it!
Noorani Brooke-Adil, Year 13, Sixth Form Science Prefect