Thursday, March 20, 2008

Creme Egg Gooeyness

The season finale from Creme Egg. Brilliant!

Science & Policy

On a similar track to my recent rants about thinking non-linearly about environmental issues, here's an article from New Scientist. The following excerpt highlights some of the key issues:

"I was struck by the fact that we were doing a lot of research into the environmental effects of GM crops after policy makers had made their decisions – it was just the wrong way around," Sutherland told New Scientist. He notes that the future supply of biofuel is already becoming a political issue because a thorough environmental assessment has yet to be carried out.

The European Union has been criticised for backing biofuels too hastily, by scientists who argue they raise food prices and threaten food security.

Offshore wind and wave power might be a solution to the growing energy crisis, but Sutherland and colleagues warn that it could also affect marine ecosystems.

And they call for research into the potential environmental impact of releasing manmade viruses. In Australia, researchers have developed a novel way of controlling the invasive red fox – a virus that infects and sterilises it – although it has not been released into the wild population.

"What happens if the virus spreads outside its target range?" asks Sutherland. "Could it sterilise other foxes? Could the virus combine with another and infect different species?"