Category: Environmental Impacts

  • Video: Sacred vs Synthetic: Competing Visions for Life on Earth

    Video: Sacred vs Synthetic: Competing Visions for Life on Earth

    Synthetic biology – genetic engineering to create and control life – could radically impact our food systems, our environment, and our relationship with nature. What is “synbio” and how will it undermine traditional knowledge, livelihoods and society? What follows is a conversation about the false promise of synbio and the real solutions right here in our […]

  • Artificial Life Threatens Nature and Society

    This was originally posted to All Africa. by Glenn Ashton Synthetic food has long been the subject of speculative fiction, from Charlie Chaplin’s “The Great Dictator” where poor quality artificial food spawned dissent, to Kurt Vonnegut’s “Breakfast of Champions” where food was manufactured from coal and petroleum because fossil fuels had trashed global ecosystems. Today […]

  • What is Synthetic Biology?

    What is Synthetic Biology?

    Engineering Life and Livelihoods This short film explains the basics on synbio and its attempts to engineer life. You can also download and read the comic book that accompanies it here. Full script: So here’s a thought experiment. What if living things were actually machines? The sort of machines that you could take apart, reprogram, […]

  • Synthetic Biology Could Open a Whole New Can of Worms

    This article originally appeared at IPS News. by Desmond Brown PYEONGCHANG, Republic of Korea, Oct 7 2014 (IPS) – Haiti, the poorest country in the Western Hemisphere, is the world’s leading producer of vetiver. In the southwest of the country, vetiver production is hard to ignore. Driving into Les Cayes, the largest town in the south, […]

  • GMOs 2.0: Synthetic Biology – Impacts on Our Food, Farmers, Consumer Products & Health

    A new generation of Genetically Modified Organisms (GMOs) is quietly entering our food supply, cosmetics and household products.  What is Synthetic Biology and what are the real costs to our food, ecosystem and farmers locally and around the world? Where: Mill Valley Community Center, Cascade Room.  180 Camino Alto, Mill Valley. When: Oct. 9, 2014; […]

  • Ecover must come clean on synthetic biology

    [This article was originally published in The Ecologist.] Following The Ecologist’s revelation about Ecover’s use of synthetic biology to make laundry detergent, the company has put its trials on hold, writes Jim Thomas. But to regain public trust, the company must re-engage honestly with its critics, and its customers. A month ago, The Ecologist revealed that ‘eco-friendly’ soap […]

  • Video: What happens when synthetic algae is turned loose?

    Video: What happens when synthetic algae is turned loose?

    What do we know about the synthetic forms of algae, and what would happen if they are released into the water and air? Not enough, says Rachel Smolker of Biofuelwatch.

  • Video: Metaphor and Reality in Synthetic Biology

    Video: Metaphor and Reality in Synthetic Biology

    Dr. Craig Holdrege, founder of the Nature Institute, talks about where things go wrong when synbio engineers conceive of life using machine metaphors, and explains why every change to DNA has unintended effects, and the broader ethical implications involved.

  • Video: Transparency from SynBio Companies?

    Video: Transparency from SynBio Companies?

    What happens when you ask a synthetic biology company for evidence that their products are safe and tested? Dana Perls of Friends of the Earth US explains.

  • Response to Motley Fool

    The following is a response to 7 Busted Myths About Solazyme’s Renewable Oils, an article which purports to debunk the claims of groups campaigning against use of synthetic biology in consumer products. Maxx, Your transparency about your financial interest in the outcome of this debate is appreciated. However, your “debunking” either misses the point or […]