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Scientists' warning to humanity: microorganisms and climate change

Cavicchioli, R, Ripple, WJ, Timmis, KN, Azam, F, Bakken, LR, Baylis, M, Behrenfeld, MJ, Boetius, A, Boyd, PW ORCID: 0000-0001-7850-1911, Classen, AT, Crowther, TW, Danovaro, R, Foreman, CM, Huisman, J, Hutchins, DA, Jansson, JK, Karl, DM, Koskella, B, Mark Welch, DB, Martiny, JBH, Moran, MA, Orphan, VJ, Reay, DS, Remais, JV, Rich, VI, Singh, BK, Stein, LY, Stewart, FJ, Sullivan, MB, van Oppen, MJH, Weaver, SC, Webb, EA and Webster, NS 2019 , 'Scientists' warning to humanity: microorganisms and climate change' , Nature Reviews Microbiology, vol. 17, no. 9 , pp. 569-586 , doi:

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In the Anthropocene, in which we now live, climate change is impacting most life onEarth. Microorganisms support the existence of all higher trophic life forms. To understand howhumans and other life forms on Earth (including those we are yet to discover) can withstandanthropogenic climate change, it is vital to incorporate knowledge of the microbial ‘unseenmajority’. We must learn not just how microorganisms affect climate change (includingproduction and consumption of greenhouse gases) but also how they will be affected by climatechange and other human activities. This Consensus Statement documents the central role andglobal importance of microorganisms in climate change biology. It also puts humanity on noticethat the impact of climate change will depend heavily on responses of microorganisms, which areessential for achieving an environmentally sustainable future.

Item Type: Article
Authors/Creators:Cavicchioli, R and Ripple, WJ and Timmis, KN and Azam, F and Bakken, LR and Baylis, M and Behrenfeld, MJ and Boetius, A and Boyd, PW and Classen, AT and Crowther, TW and Danovaro, R and Foreman, CM and Huisman, J and Hutchins, DA and Jansson, JK and Karl, DM and Koskella, B and Mark Welch, DB and Martiny, JBH and Moran, MA and Orphan, VJ and Reay, DS and Remais, JV and Rich, VI and Singh, BK and Stein, LY and Stewart, FJ and Sullivan, MB and van Oppen, MJH and Weaver, SC and Webb, EA and Webster, NS
Keywords: microbes, climate change, threat to humanity
Journal or Publication Title: Nature Reviews Microbiology
Publisher: Nature Publishing Group
ISSN: 1740-1526
DOI / ID Number:
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© 2019. The Authors. This article is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International (CC BY 4.0) License, (, which permits use, sharing, adaptation, distribution and reproduction in any medium or format, as long as you give appropriate credit to the original author(s) and the source, provide a link to the Creative Commons license, and indicate if changes were made.

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