Microbiologists' warning to humanity

We invite all microbiologists to endorse the Microbiologists’ Warning – microorganisms are so critical to achieving an environmentally sustainable future that ignoring them risks the fate of Humanity.

If you have microbiology training, we invite you to endorse our Consensus Statement published in Nature Reviews Microbiology entitled “Scientists’ Warning to Humanity: microorganisms and climate change”. Our Microbiologists’ Warning aims to raise awareness of the microbial world and make a call to action for microbiologists to become increasingly engaged in, and microbial research to become increasingly infused into, the frameworks for addressing climate change.

Before signing, please ensure you have read the Consensus Statement and/or summary that includes the abstract, introduction, description of Scientist’s Warning Movement, and the Microbiologists’ call to action from the Consensus Statement. By signing the article and adding your name, you will be indicating that you generally agree with our Consensus Statement and will therefore be helping to amplify our message to Humanity.

The motivation for the Microbiologists’ Warning comes from the Alliance of World Scientists and the Scientists’ Warning Movement that was initiated by Bill Ripple (Oregon State University) to alert humanity to the impacts of human activities on global climate and the environment. In 1992, 1,700 scientists signed the first Warning. Twenty-five years later (2017) more than 15,000 scientists signed the Second Warning; currently 21,000+ scientists have signed, and the web-site is still taking signatures. At the heart of the Warning is a call to governments and institutions to shift policy away from economic growth and towards a conservation economy that will stop environmental destruction and enable human activities to achieve a sustainable future. A film, The Second Warning, is currently being made that aims to document scientists’ advocacy for humanity to replace ‘business as usual’ and take action to achieve the survival of all species by averting the continuing environmental and climate change crisis. Linked to the Second Warning is also a series of focused Scientists’ Warning articles (currently 36), including our Microbiologists’ Warning.

To grow the Microbiologists’ Warning, signatories are encouraged to work with their professional societies to write additional article(s) addressing specific aspects of microorganisms and climate change related to members’ expertise, and particularly emphasizing issues of national relevance.

The ability of science and society to address climate change will be considerably empowered by microbiologists, by agencies demonstrably incorporating microorganisms into their ‘thinking’, and by broadly enhancing microbial literacy in society.

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