Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Going Green Goes Hi-Tech

How Biotechnology Is Helping to Create a Greener World

April 2009 (Medialink) - Everyone interested in the environment knows about recycling, hybrid cars and carbon footprints. But what about bioplastics, biofuels and pest-resistant crops? Biotechnology breakthroughs help bring us clean air, clean water and green products. Biotechnology is technology based on biology, creating cutting edge products and technologies used to create renewable fuels, increase environmental sustainability and develop new drugs and cures for devastating diseases such as cancer and Parkinson’s.

New industrial and environmental biotechnology advances are helping to make manufacturing processes cleaner and more efficient by reducing toxic chemical pollution and greenhouse gas emissions. Renewable biofuels from algae and other cellulosic materials decrease greenhouse gases while reducing our dependence on oil. Bioplastics that are available today can substitute for petroleum-based plastics, replacing waste destined for a landfill with biodegradable, compostable consumer products.

Agricultural biotechnology allows farmers to grow more food on existing farmland while reducing water and fuel consumption. New technologies also are allowing farmers to address the challenges of producing food in less than adequate growing conditions with drought and flood resistant crops. In fact, growing biotech crops actually can help enhance air, water and soil quality. Agricultural biotechnology is integral in reducing pesticide use, toxic chemical pollution and greenhouse gases. Although we can do a lot to clean up pollution after it’s in the environment, preventing pollution in the first place is even better.

Talent/Guest: Oliver P. Peoples, PhD, Chief Scientific Officer, VP Research
Oliver P. Peoples is a co-founder of Metabolix and has served as the chief scientific officer and vice president of research since January 2000. Prior to founding Metabolix, Dr. Peoples was a research scientist with the Department of Biology at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology where he emerged as a pioneer of the new field of metabolic pathway engineering and its applications in industrial biotechnology. Dr. Peoples received a Ph.D. in Molecular Biology from the University of Aberdeen, Scotland.

Talent/Guest: Fred Yoder, Fourth Generation Farmer
Fred Yoder is a 4th generation farmer who has lived and farmed near Plain City, Ohio for over 35 years. He also has operated a retail farm seed business for over 30 years, and sells seed to all kinds of farmers including those who use biotech varieties, conventional varieties, and also to those who grow organic crops. Fred has served as President of the National Corn Growers Association (NCGA) before. He is still involved as an advisor to NCGA with their efforts to develop solutions to current issues that agriculture faces, including global warming, sustainability definitions, biofuel production, and other important issues.

Source: Mediaseed

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