Wednesday, June 25, 2008

ECO CLIPS

Gordon Brown was urged not to rush "headlong" into embracing genetically modified crops amid claims there is little evidence they will solve food shortages or cut rising costs. Sir Martin Doughty, chairman of Natural England, the Government's countryside and wildlife agency, said that the Prime Minister should not consider GM foods a "quick fix" for a "huge challenge". He also warned that the crops could prove harmful to Britain's wildlife. . . Sir Martin said there was little evidence that the current generation of biotechnology crops will help to solve food shortages or preserve wildlife. In a letter he wrote: "The evidence of field-based trials on GM crops previously proposed for commercial release in England demonstrates that they can have a detrimental indirect impact on farmland biodiversity." Telegraph, UK

Nowhere in [the campaign] discussion does anyone raise a hand and ask either candidate whether their energy policies might be augmented with a plan to radically expand public transit in the United States. Transportation policy isn't on Obama's list of campaign issues, or as a subset of his energy policy. Energy policy itself, let alone a public transportation policy is absent from McCain's issue list. A discussion about what is the better bio fuel, how much fossil fuel can be displaced by them, who's in whose pocket, is lacking if not linked with a discussion of reducing the base need for these fuels through investment in public transportation and automobile alternatives, as well as changes in urban planning. . . It's only [about] whether we can change the fuel or increase the efficiency of the current energy/transportation paradigm, never whether there might not be a better paradigm. We mobilized nationally to build the interstate highway system. What can't we mobilize nationally to reinvigorate public transportation? Matthew Mcdermott, Tree Hugger