Africa / Animal Diseases / Article / Communications / Disease Control / Emerging Diseases / Epidemiology / News clipping / Research / Zoonotic Diseases

‘Tip of the iceberg’: is our destruction of nature responsible for Covid-19?

monkey

A dead monkey sold as bushmeat hangs outside a villager’s house in north-east Gabon. Photograph: Christine Nesbitt/AP

An article in The Guardian newspaper raises the question of whether human destruction of nature is responsible for mass pandemics like COVID-19.

It quotes Eric Fevre, a principal scientist at the International Livestock Research Institute, on the ubiquity of possible germ sources: ‘”There are countless pathogens out there continuing to evolve which at some point could pose a threat to humans’, he says. “The risk [of pathogens jumping from animals to humans] has always been there.”’

And it quotes ILRI’s Delia Grace, co-Leader, animal and human health program, on the importance of taking a measured approach to wet markets, like the one in Wuhan, China where the virus is thought to have originated:

“These markets are essential sources of food for hundreds of millions of poor people, and getting rid of them is impossible,” says Delia Grace, a senior epidemiologist and veterinarian with the International Livestock Research Institute, which is based in Nairobi, Kenya. She argues that bans force traders underground, where they may pay less attention to hygiene.

The full article is available here.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s