Plant biotechnology : a key technology in the 21st century




    • SHINMYO Atsuhiko
    • Graduate School of Biological Sciences, Nara Institute of Science and Technology


Although we enjoy convenient and happy lives as a result of using large amount of fossil fuels, this convenience comes at a steep price: global warming, pollution, and destruction of the environment. It took more than a hundred million years for the Earth to accumulate its current reserves of fossil fuels. It is sure that the earth will confuse, if we exhaust it within 1-2 centuries.<br>Solar energy supports all life on the earth, and plants are able to use this energy. Annually, plant biomass produces 8 times as much energy as we consume globally. Therefore, if we could harness 12% of plant biomass for the production of energy and industrial materials, in place of fossil fuels, we could establish a sustainable world. Plant biotechnology is progressing rapidly, and research aimed at producing both fuels and plastics from plant biomass is already underway. Because carbon dioxide generated from plant products will ultimately be consumed by other plants, the recycling system is built in. Our future therefore may not so dark after all.


  • Plant biotechnology

    Plant biotechnology 25(3), 211-212, 2008-06-01

    Japanese Society for Plant Cell and Molecular Biology

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