The New Standard reports on the USDA's clearance of a GMO variety of rice months after it was found to have contaminated commercially available long grain rice. Liberty Link rice, produced by Bayer CropScience, was previously unapproved for human consumption.
The journal Nature recently ran some commentary from scientists in support of nanotech, warning that some serious risk assessment was needed, not to really find out any potential problems with nanotech for public health, but to give the appearance of such evaluations, so that the public won't lose confidence in governments and business, and let "the enormous potential of nanotechnology be squandered."
But much like the non-discourse on biotech agriculture, no one really wants the pubic involved in any decision making. Better just to convince us that someone's at least thinking of us.
The BBC reports on a group of researchers in Newcastle that have applied for a license to create human-bovine embryos for the purpose fo stem-cell research.
The sunshine project reports:
"How US science's nouveau riche bioweapons constituency is flexing its muscle to carve up safety and security rules."
An editorial in the latest Nature critiques the expansion biosafety programs under the Bush Administration...
Five years ago, in the aftermath of the attack on the World Trade Center, anthrax was found in the mail in several locations in the United States. The discovery heightened fears that the country was vulnerable to bioterrorist attack. Subsequently, the federal government has, according to the Center for Arms Control and Non-Proliferation in Washington DC, spent a staggering $36 billion on biosafety-related activities.
Criticism of this approach was muted back in 2001, but five years on it is surging in the communities designated to host biosafety labs. Despite protests, however, the government is accelerating its investment in the biodefence complex that is now taking shape.
These objections have concentrated on local questions, but the proliferation of such labs begs the broader question of how much biodefence is too much. In the febrile climate of 2001, the Bush administration wasn't pressed sufficiently to explain why such proliferation of knowledge is in the national interest. Five years on, the time has come for it to do so..
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