This week in ag biotech…saying goodbye to a leader in climate science and why science and technology need to be driving agricultural policy
This week we mourn the loss of climate scientist Dr. Stephen Schneider and share why science and technology, not ideology, should guide agricultural practices worldwide.
Climate warrior Stephen Schneider is dead at 65
Stephen H. Schneider, Ph.D., passed away on Monday, July 19. He was an influential Stanford University climate scientist and wrote many books on the effects of climate change. He advised every Administration on climate policy since the 1970s and was passionate about educating the public about climate issues.
We met Dr. Schneider at the 2009 AAAS Conference and filmed a video interview with him. In the interview Dr. Schneider shared that he believed agricultural biotechnology is an important part of the solution to helping farmers reduce their carbon emissions and combat the effects of climate change. View the video interview with Dr. Schneider.
Huffington Post contributor: need science and technology in agriculture to feed the world’s hungry
Spurred by advocacy groups protesting the arrival of hybrid seeds in Haiti, Jon Entine, author of Crop Chemophobia, posted a blog on Huffington Post where he criticized the tendency of many to ignore proven science and innovation in favor of idealistic and outdated agricultural practices.
He writes that the most “socially attuned aid groups, including the widely respected Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation…have embraced science and technology as the key to boosting productivity.” He adds biotechnology is the key to boosting productivity and helping small farmers in countries like Haiti in the developing world.
Agricultural biotechnology enhances the food we eat
The blog “Eat Healthier Foods” posted an article about how biotechnology helps our food become healthier by using genes to improve the quality and quantity of the crop. The blog provides a few examples of how agricultural biotechnology has enhanced the food we eat, such as:
- Cotton, corn, potato, soybeans and canola plants that are tolerant of herbicides or protected from insects.
- Tomatoes that ripen slower, remain fresh longer, have a better flavor and survive transport better.
- Crops that are able to grow in harsh environmental conditions, such as drought or extreme heat.