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Journeys of Discovery: Futurist CEO George Jacob’s visions for San Francisco’s new Ecotarium

Courtesy Bay Ecotarium
George Jacob (left), president & CEO of San Francisco’s Aquarium of the Bay, discusses his vision for the future Bay Ecotarium with Dr. Jill Biden. Biden says, “The vision for Bay Ecotarium is exceptional and will accelerate a generational movement."";s:

George Jacob, president and CEO of the Bay Ecotarium, is on the verge of bringing the future to San Francisco. Jacob has plans for the Smithsonian-affiliated Aquarium of the Bay at Pier 39: He and his team are transforming it into something even more vital to our precarious environmental situation—a startlingly unique Climate Resilience and Ocean Conservation Living Museum.

Join associate producer and host Laurie McAndish King for a visit with Jacob about the Ecotarium’s artificial emotional intelligence—which allows machines to react to a human’s emotional state in intelligent ways—and its “Mother Portal,” which cyber-curates live streaming environmental data from around the world, bypassing geopolitical boundaries.

The Ecotarium’s immersive exhibits focus on climate change, ocean acidification, sea-level rise, micro-plastics … on possible solutions … and on the consequences of inaction. What will the Bay Area be like in 50 or 100 or 200 years if we continue in the direction we’re going now?

Outside at the Ecotarium visitors will see an impressive biomimetic façade that generates power using micro-algae. Inside, they can interact with a holographic waterfall and hear Native American voices narrating the story of climate change.

Underwriting support for Journeys of Discovery provided by Nashville's Big Back Yard economic initiative focused on rural communities in the southwest quarter of Tennessee and the Shoals Region of Northern Alabama.

You are invited to subscribe to the Lowell Thomas Award-winning podcast travel show, Journeys of Discovery with Tom Wilmer, featured on the NPR Podcast DirectoryiHeartRadioApple Podcast.

Credit Courtesy San Francisco Bay Ecotarium
George Jacob CEO Bay Ecotarium



Laurie McAndish King is an award-winning travel writer and photographer who has been interviewing fascinating people since 2007. Her work focuses on nature, culture, and cuisine. King's true stories cover 20-foot-long Australian earthworms, a journey to taste the world’s best coffee in Bali, and an Ivy League astrophysicist’s explanation of how flying saucers are powered. Her three collections of travel stories—poignant, insightful and often quite funny—have inspired and entertained readers since 2014.
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