A British study showed, Friday, that global warming may have played a role in the transmission of the Coronavirus to humans, by providing new shelters for bats that are supposed to be the source of the virus.
Researchers from the University of Cambridge, Britain, in a study published Friday, modeled the presence of groups of different types of bats using temperature and precipitation data to determine the location of the type of vegetation that forms their habitat, in order to conduct this study published in the Journal of Environmental Sciences.
According to these models, over the past 100 years, 40 species of bats have seen favorable conditions for their proliferation in an area along with southern China, Burma, and Laos.
Since each type of bat carries an average of 2.7 corona viruses, hundreds of these different viruses must be circulating in this region, hence the hypothesis of the origin of the “SARS-Cove-2” virus from them.
The lead author of the study, Robert Meyer, told “Agence France Presse:” We are far from saying that the epidemic would not have appeared without global warming, but it seems difficult to say that this increase in the number of bats and the Coronaviruses that they carry makes it less likely.
Meyer stressed that “the exact chain of transmission of the (SARS-Cove-2) virus has not been determined yet, but climate change and the destruction of ecosystems are making humans and animals in greater contact.”
“These are two sides of the same coin,” he added. “We are penetrating their habitats more deeply and at the same time climate change can push pathogens towards us.”
Kate Jones, Professor of Environment and Biodiversity at University College London, said, “The passage from animals to humans is the result of complex mechanisms, and climate change certainly has a role to play by modifying the sites of species, but the increase in the number of individuals in a group and the degradation of habitats through agriculture can occur.” A bigger role. “
For his part, Paul Valdez, a professor of environmental geography at the University of Bristol, pointed out that the researchers “show that climate change may have had an impact on species in Greece, but it is more than 2000 km from Wuhan” where the epidemic appeared in China.