In his work, Professor of Plant Biology Massimo Maffei has been exploring the relationship between the geomagnetic field of the planet and plant responses. This research is becoming increasingly important as new evidence reveals the sensitivity and reactivity of plants to varying magnetic fields, for example by altering their gene expression, their growth and development.
The current view is that life on earth has evolved in response to changes in the geomagnetic field and that these changes will have consequences. The magnetic component of artificial electric radiation produced by mobile phone base stations, Wi-Fi, etcetera, has hardly been researched but is expected to have consequences.
Scientists have only recently started to understand that plants need electrical signals in multiple ways, but it is unknown what the long term impact will be of al the electro-pollutants that are beginning to invade every park and every forest.
Understanding geomagnetic field effects on life will provide the fundamental background necessary to understand the evolution of life in different ways, and may help us to develop sensible recommendations for our future relationship with the ecosystem.