Report by Deneesha Pillay & Megan Flemmit at SciFest Africa 2014.
One of the workshops that The South African Agency for Science and Technology Association held concerned the use of Biotechnology. High school students attended workshops that presented a technique to extract DNA from wheat using everyday household products to give them an understanding of the process and the science.
They also explored how biotechnology is used for genetic modification of organisms and the many controversies around this. The conflict between the humanitarian, corporate and science perspectives has led to great debate about the ethics of Genetic Modification (GM). This video proposes different ideas about the ethics involved and the concerns some environmentalists have with GM.
We also see how biotechnology is used in a sustainable way. The Institute for Environmental Biotechnology at Rhodes University works in parallel with the Belmont Valley Water Treatment Works to clean sewage water to produce water that is less harmful for the environment.