A New Biology for the 21st Century by National Research Council, Division on Earth and Life

By National Research Council, Division on Earth and Life Studies, Board on Life Sciences, Committee on a New Biology for the 21st Century: Ensuring the United States Leads the Coming Biology Revolution

Now greater than ever, biology has the aptitude to give a contribution sensible recommendations to some of the significant demanding situations confronting the us and the realm. a brand new Biology for the twenty first Century recommends "New Biology" approach--one that relies on larger integration inside biology, and nearer collaboration with actual, computational, and earth scientists, mathematicians and engineers--be used to discover strategies to 4 key societal wishes: sustainable nutrients creation, environment recovery, optimized biofuel creation, and development in human future health. The strategy demands a coordinated attempt to leverage assets around the federal, inner most, and educational sectors to aid meet demanding situations and enhance the go back on lifestyles technology examine regularly.

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Astronomers related the light received from stars and the sun to the chemical properties of the atoms generating that light. In this way, new connections within the physical sciences became apparent and drove further advances. These theoretical advances also led to practical applications that transformed society. Having a “parts list” of the physical world enabled scientists and engineers to develop technologies that would not have been possible without this understanding.

Biofuel today is made by using fermentation to convert starch from corn into ethanol. S. corn crop is used for ethanol production (USDA, 2009). As a result of the application of biotechnology to agriculture, per-acre corn yields are increasing at 2 to 3 percent per year (Egli, 2008). Grain alone, however, will not allow dramatic expansion of biofuel production, and must be supplemented, and ultimately replaced, with other sources of biomass. Development of energy crops that are direct sources of fermentable sugars, such as sugarcane or sweet sorghum, or sources of cellulosic materials, such as switchgrass, miscanthus, or agricultural and forestry byproducts, is an important priority.

Measuring qualities like the impact of ecosystems on air and water quality, or placing Copyright © National Academy of Sciences. All rights reserved. html 26 A NEW BIOLOGY FOR THE 21ST CENTURY a value on the carbon that is stored in undisturbed ecosystems, is challenging. Detecting changes in biodiversity and predicting the impact of extinctions on ecosystem services is even harder. But if the value of ecosystems is to be appreciated, the impact of human activities understood, and management decisions made on a scientific basis, it is important to develop a methodology and the necessary tools to monitor the state of ecosystems.

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