From the Guajira Desert to the Apennines, and from Mediterranean Microplates to the Mexican Killer Asteroid: Honoring the Career of Walter Alvarez
CONTAINS OPEN ACCESS
This volume pays tribute to the great career and extensive and varied scientific accomplishments of Walter Alvarez, on the occasion of his 80th birthday in 2020, with a series of papers related to the many topics he covered in the past 60 years: Tectonics of microplates, structural geology, paleomagnetics, Apennine sedimentary sequences, geoarchaeology and Roman volcanics, Big History, and most famously the discovery of evidence for a large asteroidal impact event at the Cretaceous–Tertiary (now Cretaceous–Paleogene) boundary site in Gubbio, Italy, 40 years ago, which started a debate about the connection between meteorite impact and mass extinction. The manuscripts in this special volume were written by many of Walter’s close collaborators and friends, who have worked with him over the years and participated in many projects he carried out. The papers highlight specific aspects of the research and/or provide a summary of the current advances in the field.
Planetary defense: The communication challenge—Lessons from the COVID-19 pandemic
Published:June 21, 2022
Lea K. Nagel, Rudolf Albrecht, Christian Koeberl*, 2022. "Planetary defense: The communication challenge—Lessons from the COVID-19 pandemic", From the Guajira Desert to the Apennines, and from Mediterranean Microplates to the Mexican Killer Asteroid: Honoring the Career of Walter Alvarez, Christian Koeberl, Philippe Claeys, Alessandro Montanari
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As impact events are known to have had severe effects on the geological and biological evolution of the Earth, the need to detect potentially hazardous objects that might collide with the Earth, and to possibly protect our planet from asteroid impacts, has been recognized in recent years. Planetary defense covers human activities to address potential impacts of Near-Earth Objects on Earth. Once the immediate threat of such an impact is obvious, this fact, along with the intended countermeasures, will have to be communicated to the public. There is a parallel to the recent coronavirus (COVID-19) situation: an imminent threat and the required response are being communicated. Reactions between acceptance and cooperation all the way to denial, conspiracy theories, fake news, and active opposition can be observed. It is evident that these factors will have to be considered in the strategy for communicating the asteroid threat.