Meet the Author:
Russell Galt,  Cape Town

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Russell Galt

Russell Galt

Project Coordinator
South African National Biodiversity Institute
Cape Town

Russell Galt works for the South African National Biodiversity Institute based in Cape Town. His role entails working with government and research institutions to develop an African strategy for mobilizing policy-relevant biodiversity data, whilst strengthening regional collaboration and capacity in biodiversity informatics. Before joining SANBI, he managed ICLEI – Local Governments for Sustainability’s global biodiversity program, which entailed rendering advisory and advocacy services to city governments. He has also held positions in the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN), Axiom Venture Capital, and Subsea Energy. He holds first-class degrees in law and science and has undertaken social-ecological field work in Nepal, India, South Africa, Morocco, Peru and China. He is a member of the Environment and Energy Commission of the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC) as well as the ICC Task Force on Green Economy.

April 16, 2015
Parasitized Garden Acraea pupa

A wee garden in a windy city From a leafy suburb in the shadow of Table Mountain, I need not venture far to encounter a myriad of remarkable creatures employing clever survival strategies. Fighting, stalking, feigning, loving, dancing, stealing, and darting, biodiversity spills into and out of my garden. It burrows beneath the lawn, slithers … Continue reading A Tree Hitched to the Universe

March 31, 2014
Van Riebeeck's Hedge

Cape Town sprawls beneath the majestic Table Mountain in the heart of the mega-diverse Cape Floral Kingdom. With 3.74 million inhabitants, it is South Africa’s second most populous city. Despite the obvious ecological stressors resulting from the city’s high metabolism and rapid expansion (ca. 1.4% per year), a spectacular richness of biodiversity survives within and … Continue reading Heritage Trees of Cape Town (Continued)

September 1, 2013
Treaty Tree—The Treaty Tree was previously known as the Old Slave Tree of Woodstock. Photo: Russell Galt

Have you ever sat beneath an old urban tree and wished that it could talk? Many times older than any human, yet always rooted to one location, imagine the stories that the tree could share and the wisdom it could impart. Such trees could have led extraordinary lives, witnessing profound landscape transformations: from natural to … Continue reading Trees as Starting Points for Journeys of Learning About Local History

April 28, 2013

Every time I see an adult on a bicycle I no longer despair for the future of the human race. —H.G. Wells Fast, efficient and individualistic, the bicycle is no ordinary mode of transport. It’s a church, a gym, a community creator, a cash printer, a protest placard, a dopamine generator, a mechanical expression of self-determination, … Continue reading The Bicycle is a Catalyst for Nature Conservation

September 5, 2012

For all of us working in the field of “cities and biodiversity”, it is well worth reflecting on our achievements. We can take personal satisfaction knowing that we contribute to a meaningful cause with tangible results. Every scientific paper, policy-brief and newsletter, every side event, meeting and presentation, every phone call, email and letter, even … Continue reading Cities and Biodiversity: A Call for Up-Scaled Action