In the news...

World Soil Day: soil health is key to environmental and human health

December 5th, 2018 / FoodTank

Soil is more than just dirt—the state of our soils impacts everything from human health to climate change. Today, scientists, research organizations, and individuals across the globe are celebrating World Soil Day to recognize how healthy soils are vital for the future of the food system and a sustainable planet.
“Land …

Living Planet Report finds humanity has wiped out 60% of animal populations since 1970

October 30th, 2018 / The Guardian, UK

The huge loss is a tragedy in itself but also threatens the survival of civilisation, say the world’s leading scientists.
Humanity has wiped out 60% of mammals, birds, fish and reptiles since 1970, leading the world’s foremost experts to warn that the annihilation of wildlife is now an emergency that threatens …

‘High-yield’ farming costs the environment less than previously thought – and could help spare habitats

October 11th, 2018 / University of Cambridge

New findings suggest that more intensive agriculture might be the “least bad” option for feeding the world while saving its species – provided use of such “land-efficient” systems prevents further conversion of wilderness to farmland.
“Our results suggest that high-yield farming could be harnessed to meet the growing demand for food …

Rice genes could be key to stemming nitrogen pollution

August 28th, 2018 / Scientific American

Rice, wheat and other grains that have been bred to produce larger harvests using less land have been critical to feeding Earth’s population in the past 50 years. But these crops come with a significant cost: Their thirst for the chemical nutrients in fertilizer contributes to pollution that threatens air, …

10 ways CRISPR will revolutionize environmental science

July 31st, 2018 / Alliance for Science, US

The hot new gene editing technique CRISPR has been making headlines for its potential to treat or prevent diseases. But medicine isn’t the only science where CRISPR is opening doors. This powerful genetic engineering tool is already helping scientists develop technologies to protect or repair the environment from human harm.
CRISPR: …

Cherishing the ground we walk on

July 18th, 2018 / FAO

Soils do amazing things for us that we sometimes take for granted. They sustain food production, filter our water, are the source for our medicines and help us to combat and adapt to climate change. Here are reasons we should appreciate the ground beneath our feet. Read …

How toxic is the world’s most popular herbicide, Roundup?

February 14th, 2018 / The Scientist, Canada

Glyphosate, the active ingredient in the world’s most widely used herbicide, Roundup, is arguably also one of the most contentious. Mass protests erupted in Europe last November after the European Commission, following much discussion, granted a five-year extension for the license to use glyphosate in agriculture in the E.U.
Farmers have …

Top 10 consumer questions about GMOs answered

October 10th, 2016 / gmo answers, US

GMO Answers conducted a survey with the Opinion Research Council (ORC) to gather consumers’ top ten questions related to GMOs. Below are those questions in order of interest, followed by the facts about genetically modified foods for each. See …

Improving cassava processing

September 22nd, 2016 / CGIAR Roots, tubers and Bananas

Much of the cassava grown in developing countries is processed to produce starch or flour used as ingredients in an array of food products. As demand for those products grows, the cassava processing industry will play an increasingly important role for farmers and local economies. The CGIAR Research Program on …

Great Green Wall: ambitious plan to beat back the Sahara

September 14th, 2016 / AfkInsider.com

Eleven African countries are making headway in their ambitious pan-African effort to plant trees along the edge of the Sahara desert, the world largest, and beat back its spread into more arable land southwards.
The plan dubbed the ‘Great Green Wall’ seeks to counter the spread of Sahara Desert in Africa …