Cafe Scientifique Orlando is a gathering of scientifically-inclined people in Central Florida, who meet at a cafe, coffee house, pub, or nonacademic location to discuss events and ideas in the world of science. We enjoy beer and wine, and we use plain language to talk about extraordinary ideas.

Full Title: 
Human Transformation of Global Elemental Cycles
Bohlen, Patrick J.
Wednesday, 4 December 2013 - 7:00pm - 9:30pm
Downtown Credo
Downtown Credo
706 W. Smith Street
Postal Code:
United States

NOW at Downtown Credo, across the street from Taste.

The rapacious human appetite for energy and food, accelerated by the industrial revolution, has transformed global elemental cycles. This transformation is altering our land, air and sea, with serious consequences for the entire global ecosystem. The Earth has moved into a new era, The Age of Humans, which some scientists have termed the “Anthropocene.” Human alteration of the earth can be viewed through many lenses, but nothing captures our predicament better than our transformation of global elemental cycles. Our impact on these cycles not only reflects human domination of the earth, but also exemplifies the challenges we face in meeting energy and food needs of a burgeoning human population sustainably. In this science café, I will take you on a crash course through global biogeochemistry, showing how humans have altered global cycles of the major life elements: carbon, nitrogen and phosphorus. Along the way, you will discover linkages between your local life and the global ecosystem. From global warming, to nutrient pollution of our coastal estuaries and springs, to the challenges of feeding the world, you will walk away with a better appreciation for how we are transforming the earth, and what we need to do to create a more sustainable future.

Patrick J. Bohlen is Professor of Biology and Director of Landscape and Natural Resources and Arboretum at the University of Central Florida. He oversees landscape planning and operations for multiple UCF campuses, and directs research and educational initiatives that guide conservation and stewardship of natural resources. His research focusses on soil and ecosystem ecology, and has included projects ranging from the role of earthworms in carbon and nitrogen cycling in soils, to human impact on nutrient runoff and water quality in urban and agricultural environments.

Past Café Scientifique Events

Race to the Moon 18 November, 2014 - 18:30 downtown library
Good Bacteria 9 September, 2014 - 18:30 downtown library
Marine Ecosystems 8 August, 2014 - 18:30 downtown library
Solar System 7 July, 2014 - 18:30 downtown library
Robotics 6 June, 2014 - 18:30 downtown library
Cloud Computing 13 May, 2014 - 18:30 downtown library
Nanoscience 8 April, 2014 - 18:30 downtown library
Fire Ants 11 March, 2014 - 18:30 downtown library
Food Preservation 5 March, 2014 - 19:00 Eden Bar at...
Marine Mammals 11 February, 2014 - 18:30 downtown library
Bees 14 January, 2014 - 18:30 downtown library
Frankenfood 10 December, 2013 - 18:30 downtown library

Topics We'd Love to See

What are some topics you’d like to have? Tell us in your comments below. See our full schedule to know what we’ve had and plan to have, before adding something new.

Additionally, if you are a scientific expert interested in presenting a topic, please email us.