As I head towards Doha where through the World Economic Forum I will be continuing the battle to encourage governments and policy makers to be proactive about technology rather than reactive, Andrew Maynard’s excellent posting on the kerfuffle over using ‘nano’ dispersants to clear up oil is more grist to the mill.
I often despair when policy on environment and health issues seems to be made without any recourse to science, whether on MMR vaccines, GMO’s or the Louisiana clean up. For a background on the alleged dangerous nanotech you can take a look at Andrews blog. But the big issue here is a ridiculous system which often results in us to be unable to make use of technology.
Making wise choices on the dispersants used in the Gulf of Mexico is vitally important, and bad choices could have lasting consequences. And it is right and proper that questions should be asked over the use of one product over another. But if the spill is to be dealt with effectively, these choices must be science-informed – otherwise no-ones interests are served in the long run.
The real question I’ll be looking at in Doha is much longer are we going to have to wade through obfuscation from all sides while the planet dies?