WUR researchers join climate coalition for concerned scientists

October 27, 2022

On Tuesday 25 October, a group of researchers launched the Wageningen branch of Scientists for Future (S4F). S4F is an international community of scientists who are deeply worried about climate change and call for a stronger response to the current ecological crisis. By joining this community, the Wageningen researchers want to take action immediately.

The launch was organised by Ignas Heitkönig (Wildlife Ecology and Conservation group), Susanne van Donk and Geert Aarts (both Wageningen Marine Research). Around 25 scientists attended the kick-off meeting in person, with many others joining online. Heitkönig gave a short presentation to explain what S4F is, what it does and why the initiative is so urgent. Through S4F, scientists from all disciplines can get organised and take action. The coalition has branches in Nijmegen, Deventer, Utrecht, Delft and Amsterdam, among others, and in Germany, Belgium, Switzerland and other countries.

The future of the planet

Following Heitkönig’s presentation, the scientists split up into groups to discuss their motivation for joining S4F, and what actions they wanted to take. Many scientists indicated that they are worried about the future of the planet and want to contribute to a sustainable future. Several concrete ideas were proposed, including a knowledge database and ways for scientists to reach out. Susanne van Donk set up a steering group that will organise these actions from now on.

‘We achieved more than I had hoped for’, said Heitkönig after the meeting. ‘Within 2 to 3 weeks, more than 60 scientists in Wageningen got involved and the Dutch organisation of S4F embraced our initiative. We are all very concerned about climate change, biodiversity loss, and related ecological crises. That is what motivates us to take action.’