It was not merely the fact that an Italian bureaucrat decided to import an otherwise banned GM crop from America that was so ironic. In addition to the special exemptions granted on a case-by-case basis to Czech, Spanish, Portuguese and Slovakian farmers, countries throughout Europe, including Italy, have imported GM corn from America in the past under a whole different array of special, case-by-case exemptions granted on a strictly controlled basis by bureaucrats in Brussels. What made Rabboni’s final decision so hypocritical, and frankly absurd, were the sheer quantities involved and the astronomical expense for an already overextended Italian treasury.
You sometimes charge your cell phone in the kitchen, and sometimes in the car. But how about in the lavatory, water closet, or the loo? Well that may sound strange, but a research team in England has created a microbial fuel cell, or MFC, that can turn organic matter – in this case urine – into electricity.
Genetically modified foods are feared by some, but are these fears this justified? Dr. Patrick Michaels, director of the Center for the Study of Science at the Cato Institute, says no, and here explains why. . . .
Wood is used for everything from kitchen tables to baseball bats, but might it also be a source of food for a growing world population?
In the famous movie, Jurassic Park, scientists used DNA of extinct dinosaurs to bring them back to life. Now, according to Energy and Environment News, genetic resurrection of extinct animals may not be purely science fiction. . . .
Opposition to genetically modified food has been a top issue for environmental activists, and has led to bans and other official anti-GMO policies in Europe and Asia. But now, in a stunning turnaround, Mark Lynas, the British activist who helped spur the anti-GMO movement worldwide, says he got it all wrong.
CHURCHVILLE, VA—The world’s farm pesticide death toll has been cut radically with biotech seeds that carry their own internal pesticide. A new study in India has found that biotech cotton has reduced pesticide spraying by 50 percent, and spraying of the most toxic poisons by 70 percent. The reduced spraying is helping avoid “several million cases of pesticide poisoning in India every year.” This is important progress—which should be enough by itself to embarrass Greenpeace and the other anti-technology groups opposing biotech. But the big news on the biotech crops is that they’re slashing the toll from farmer suicides, perhaps by [...]
CHURCHVILLE, VA—The African Biofortified Sorghum project centered in South Africa, is striving to breed sorghum with extra lysine, vitamin A, iron, and zinc to help millions of African small farmers meet their families’ nutritional needs. The project is funded by the Bill Gates Foundation, collaborating with Du Pont and Pioneer Hi-Bred Seeds. Unfortunately, the project has been unable to get South African regulatory approval for its field trials. The test planting will now have to be done in the U.S., though African trials would be a better test. Also in South Africa, researchers are working on insect-resistant biotech potatoes for Africa’s [...]
Always trying to come up with new ways to stop the progress of safe, genetically modified foods, some environmentalists are now claiming that the pollen from such plants will “pollute” nearby organic fields. But according to expert Dennis Avery of the Hudson Institute, traces of biotech pollen have practically no effect whatsoever on nearby crops, and esteemed bodies like the National Academy of Sciences and British Royal Society all say there is no basis for regulating gene-spliced crops any differently from other crops. Since GM foods are already helping to conserve land, reduce chemical use, cut down on erosion, [...]
CHURCHVILLE, VA—When will the public turn its back on the ill-founded “concerns” of the Green movement that misinformed us about DDT, salmon extinction, deformed frogs, man-made global warming, and a host of other fake “calamities”? When will we support more high-yield farming research to meet redoubled world food needs in 2050? Especially since the alternative would be to plow down more wild species’ habitat to plant additional low-yield crops. Researchers at the University of Adelaide just announced a new gene modification that tells rice plants to store salt in their roots. That prevents the salt getting to the plants’ shoots, where [...]
I can’t help but praise Michael Specter’s new book: Denialism: How Irrational Thinking Hinders Scientific Progress, Harms the Planet, and Threatens Our Lives. Specter warns that we live in a world where the leaders of African nations prefer to let their citizens starve to death rather than import genetically-modified food grains. Childhood vaccines have proven to be the most effective public health measure in history, yet people march on Washington to protest their use. Fifty years ago pharmaceutical companies were regarded as vital supports for our good health and lengthening life spans; now they are seen as callous corporate enemies of health and the environment.