06 Francine McCarthy: A lake in the Anthropocene
Plant KingdomMay 06, 202400:44:5061.58 MB

06 Francine McCarthy: A lake in the Anthropocene

Micropaleontologist Dr Francine McCarthy goes deep into the sediments of Crawford Lake, a small and unassuming lake in the Niagara Escarpment town of Milton, Ontario. In 2023, Dr McCarthy led a team that identified Crawford Lake as the best location on earth that captured evidence of human caused planetary change. Endorsed by the Anthropocene Working Group, It was proposed as the best ‘golden spike’ site of the Anthropocene. Dr McCarthy shares how she first encountered the lake, her research on microscopic organisms of the Great Lakes Region, and personal reflections on the Anthropocene.


Dr Francine McCarthy is a professor of Earth Sciences at Brock University in St. Catharines, Ontario. She is a micropaleontologist who reconstructs paleoenvironments through careful analysis of small organisms fossilized in lake sediments. Her research has spanned small lake to marine environments and everything in between. She has worked around the world but primarily focuses in the Great Lakes Region of Canada. Her interdisciplinary research has been conducted in collaboration with several geologists, biologists, geographers, and archaeologists from government, university, and the private sector.

This conversation is hosted and produced by Catherine Polcz with Music by Carl Didur.