James Lovelock: What can the father of Gaia theory tell us about our future?
On the eve of the visionary scientist's 100th birthday, James Lovelock, creator of Gaia theory, reflects on his life and career.
This week on the Science Focus Podcast, we spend some time with James Lovelock – the visionary scientist and environmental thinker who this month turns 100 years old.
James Lovelock is best known as the creator of the Gaia hypothesis, which proposes that our planet and all the life on it functions as a single self-regulating organism.
Less well known is that he also developed scientific instruments for NASA missions to Mars; he invented the electron capture detector, with which he became the first person to detect the widespread presence of CFCs in the atmosphere; and he even carried out influential work in cryopreservation, bringing frozen hamsters back to life.
James Lloyd, staff writer at BBC Science Focus, visited Lovelock at his Dorset home to look back at his life and achievements.
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Listen to more episodes of the Science Focus Podcast:
- How can we save our planet? – Sir David Attenborough
- Why is Leonardo da Vinci’s scientific legacy so often overlooked? - Martin Clayton
- There is no Plan B for planet Earth – Lord Martin Rees
- Could leaving nature to its own devices be the key to meeting the UK’s climate goals? – Mark Lynas
- Are we facing an insect apocalypse? – Brad Lister
- Air pollution is killing us, here's how you can stop it – Gary Fuller