Humanity came face to face with a novel virus at the end of 2019. This presentation is a lay-person’s summary of what has happened since. The virus has now infected tens of millions of people and killed 1.5 million. The virus appears to have jumped from bats into our increasingly crowded societies. We now understand much about its genome, transmission, and effects in the body. In a follow-up session in January, we’ll examine effects of the virus on society and how we have responded to its presence in our population.
Mr. Dougherty is an ecologist and environmental scientist. After a decade as a consultant on hazardous materials in the private sector, he spent two decades in the federal government of Canada working on myriad aspects of environmental policy. He retired from Health Canada, where his policy research included chronic and infectious diseases, in 2012. He then became active in the Canadian Association for the Club of Rome and published a climate fiction novel.