WAUSAU — The direct threats caused by changing weather patterns, such as more intense and frequent storms and heat waves, are easy to spot in central and northern Wisconsin. However, the indirect threats of climate change, including increased rates of Lyme disease and other insect-borne pathogens and the effects of larger and longer algal blooms, are becoming more and more obvious – and concerning. 

At 10 a.m. today, Aug. 1, Wisconsin Public Radio’s “Route 51” host Shereen Siewert welcomes Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources Research Scientist Gina LaLiberte, Open Medicine Institute’s Dr. Andreas Kogelnik, and Howard Young Foundation President Erin Biertzer to explore the indirect threats posed by climate change in central and northern Wisconsin.  

LaLiberte will discuss the increase in algal blooms throughout the state, and how climate change is affecting cyanobacteria and its bloom occurrence. Kogelnik and Biertzer, who are key players in Woodruff’s new tick-borne illness center, will explain the connection between rising temperatures and the increasing prevalence of vector-borne diseases in the area.  

WPR reporter Rob Mentzer will also discuss his research on the rising water levels throughout central and northern Wisconsin, and the potential impact on human health.  

“Route 51” airs at 10 a.m. on Thursdays on The Ideas Network stations 101.3 & 91.9/Wausau, AM 930/Auburndale-Stevens Point, 99.1/Stevens Point, 100.9/Marshfield, 90.3/Park Falls, 89.1/Adams-Wisconsin Rapids, and 89.9/Rhinelander-Eagle River. It is re-broadcast Fridays at 7 p.m. on 90.9/Wausau. Program archives are available at?wpr.org/route51.?? 


Investigative journalist, music enthusiast, blogger, animal lover, kayaker, knitter, wife, mother.