THE BIG BIOFUEL DEBATE RUMBLES ON

By JULIA DAY, STEPS Centre member Biofuels have little impact in cutting greenhouse gas emissions so governments should concentrate instead on lowering energy consumption to fight climate change, according to an Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) report published today. Governments should boost the so-called second generation biofuels that do not use food crops,…

RISKING REGULATORY CAPTURE AT THE UK’S FOOD STANDARDS AGENCY

By JULIA DAY, STEPS Centre member “The delivery of safe food and health governance is challenging and contested, and knowledge and institutions independent of vested interests are essential for public health,” write Erik Millstone – STEPS Centre food and agrciulture co-convenor – and Tim Lang in this week’s Lancet. But how independent of vested interests…

BRAZIL: WHAT LIES BEHIND THE NATURAL KNOWLEDGE ECONOMY?

By ADRIAN SMITH, STEPS Centre member The tone of the launch of Demos’ Brazil, the Natural Knowledge Economy report by Kirsten Bound, was aimed at boosting innovative activities and potential in the country in general. The distributional consequences (social and environmental) of that innovation were acknowledged as a challenge, but not covered at the event,…

AVIAN ‘FLU: THE POLITICS AND POLICY PROCESSES OF A GLOBAL RESPONSE

By JULIA DAY, STEPS Centre member When the potential of a flu pandemic derived from Avian Influenza emerged, alarm bells rang across the world. The prospect of a major public health catastrophe caused by the human-human transmission of so-called bird flu sparked considerable investment into developing surveillance and response systems for the disease. But how…