Environmental DNA
Date & Time
Wednesday, March 6, 2024, 2:00 PM - 3:00 PM
Caren Helbing Ethan Edson Linda Rutledge David Castle Erin DeBruin

What if we can collect a sample of water from a creek and be able to determine what animals and other species have passed by? Environmental DNA, or eDNA, is DNA left behind from living organisms that is collected from soil, water, snow, air and other environments. eDNA is a useful tool in detecting endangered wildlife that were otherwise unseen, as well as identifying other species that may be unknown. Similarly, it can also detect the presence of viruses in a human population by testing waste water. Despite its potential, the uptake of this tool still remains limited. What are the opportunities to use eDNA in BC?   Are there any international examples that have successfully used this tool? What are some of the challenges to reach the full potential of eDNA? A scientist using this tool for an NGO will discuss with a leading academic researcher, a CEO of a company and marine scientist, as well as a philosopher of science and social scientist.
Genome BC held two policy foresight workshops on this topic, one internal and one at the Canadian Science Policy Conference in Ottawa. The results of these workshops will be synthesized and shared with the audience.

Session Type
Panel Discussion