Friday, July 12, 2024

Big Tech, AI and the Global Electricity Conundrum

While the ruling technocracy loves to tout its record and promote the anti-greenhouse gas mantra when it comes to their own operations, a recent release from Google (the host company of this blog) shows us that the rubber does not always meet the road when it comes to environmental stewardship.

  

In its 2023 Environmental Report:

 


...Google's Chief Sustainability Officer Kate Brandt and Senior Vice President of Learning and Sustainability Benedict Gomes state the following in the introductory Executive Letter:

 

"Our annual Environmental Report offers a deep dive into our efforts to harness technology—particularly AI—to drive positive environmental change and operate our business sustainably. This year, we’re also offering a new experimental AI chatbot, powered by NotebookLM, to help summarize key findings, clarify complex topics, and explore the details about our environmental work."

 

In fact, one section in the report outlines Google's use of "AI for sustainability":

 

"We know that scaling AI and using it to accelerate climate action is just as crucial as addressing the environmental impact associated with it."

 

...and in these graphics:

 



Google boldly claims that AI has the:

 

"…potential to help mitigate 5–10% of global greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions by 2030. "

 

Google also claims the following:

 

"We have a bold goal to reach net-zero emissions across all of our operations and value chain by 2030, supported by a goal to run on 24/7 CFE (carbon-free energy) on every grid where we operate. In addition, we’re working to advance water stewardship, build a circular economy, and restore and enhance nature and biodiversity. This year’s report shows how we continue to make progress across all of these areas:


1.) Ten of our grid regions 10 achieved at least 90% CFE, and even with our total electricity load increasing across our data centers, we maintained a global average of 64% CFE. We also celebrated a first-of-a-kind enhanced geothermal project now delivering CFE to the grid

 

2.) We signed contracts to purchase approximately 4 gigawatts of clean energy generation capacity 11 in locations such as Texas, Belgium, and Australia—more than in any prior year."

 

All of this sounds just magical, doesn't it.  Unfortunately, this is where reality doesn't meet expectations.  Google's target is to "reduce 50% of its combined Scope 1, 2 (market-based), and 3 absolute greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions by 2030."  Unfortunately, that goal looks increasingly unlikely as shown on this graphic from the report:

 


Google's total GHG emissions in 2023 increased by 13 percent on a year-over-year basis and a 48 percent increase when compared to 2019.  The company's total emissions of 14,314,800 tonnes of CO2 equivalent consists of the following:

 

Notice the large Scope 2 emissions.  The main source of these emissions is purchases of electricity for the company's data centres and offices despite the fact that the company claims that its data centres are among the most efficient in the world.  The company will procure carbon-free energy to reduce its Scope 2 emissions with the goal of running on carbon-free energy 24 hours a day, seven days a week by 2030.  In 2023, the company's data centres and offices ran on carbon-free energy for 64 percent of its electricity use on an hourly basis, the same percentage as in 2022 ranging from 0 percent in Qatar and Saudi Arabia and 4 percent in Singapore to 100 percent in Canada (thanks to Hydro-Quebec) and 98 percent in Finland. 

 

While artificial intelligence is being touted as the panacea to the global climate crisis, as Google is finding out, such is not the case.  Here is a graphic from my favourite globalists at the World economic Forum have observed the conundrum between AI and energy usage as shown here:

 

 

Here's an example of the AI/global environment conundrum from Tom’s Hardware:

 

"Nvidia's H100 GPU is projected to consume approximately 3,740  kilowatt-hours (kWh) of electricity annually. Assuming that Nvidia sells 1.5 million H100 GPUs in 2023 and two million H100 GPUs in 2024 and that there is a 61 percent annual utilization, there will be 3.5 million such processors deployed by late 2024. In total, they will consume a whopping 13,091,820,000 kilowatt-hours (kWh) of electricity per year, or 13,091.82 GWh."


This is roughly the annual power consumption of entire nations like Georgia, Guatemala and Lithuania and that the 3.76 million Nvidia GPU shipments could consume as much as 14.38 TWh, the same annual power needs as 1.3 million American households...for one model of a GPU.

 

The International Energy Agency projects that global electricity demand from AI, data centres and cryptocurrencies could reach more than 1000W TWh in 2026, a 217 percent increase from 2022, equivalent to the electricity consumption of Japan and you can assure yourself that much of this growth in demand will NOT be fulfilled with renewable sources.

 

With Big Tech and Google in particular spending untold hundreds of billions of dollars on accelerating AI development and increasing both the speed and power consumption of GPUs, it's increasingly looking like the move to AI is going to be the global energy/environment canary in the coal mine and most certainly not the solution to the problem (that they are creating). 


Thursday, July 11, 2024

Electric Vehicles and Forever Chemicals - The Real Environmental Impact of the EV Movement

Governments and many individuals (EVangelists) promote the use of electric vehicles as the spotlessly clean solution to the global climate "crisis".  One would almost think that there is absolutely no negative environmental impact to the growing and government-mandated use of electric vehicles.  That said, recent research by Jennifer Guelfo et al in Nature Communications shows that there is a rarely reported environmental impact of lithium ion batteries that are used to energize the growing global fleet of electric vehicles.

  

The article, entitled "Lithium-ion battery components are at the nexus of sustainable energy and environmental release of per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances" examines the use of these chemicals that are released during lithium-ion battery manufacturing, usage and disposal.  According to the article, lithium-ion technologies incorporate a class of per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) known as bis-perfluoroalkyl sulfonimides (bis-FASIs).  These compounds are also used in non-stick cookware coatings, windmill coatings, semiconductors and photovoltaic cells.  More to the point of this posting, ionic liquids, including the Li+ salt of bis(trifluoromethylsulfonyl)imide (bis-FMeSI), are used as a primary or secondary lithium-ion battery (LiB) electrolyte. The Li salt of bis-FMeSI is also incorporated as an anti-static agent in polyvinylidene fluoride (PVDF) composites which are used in LiBs as electrode binders and as part of the separator between the cathode and anode.  Up to 96 percent of bis-FMeSI is recoverable which is wonderful, however, studies estimate that as little as 5% of LiBs are currently being recycled.  Between now and 2040, the growing use of lithium-ion batteries for transportation could result in an estimated 8 million tons of LiB waste by 2040 meaning that there is potential for the widespread environmental release of per-and polyfluoroalkyl substances including bis-FMeSI during the lifecycle of lithium-ion batteries.

  

The authors of the study collected surface, tap and groundwater samples along with sediment and soil samples from 87 locations near Cottage Grove, Minnesota (MN), USA, Paducah and Louisville, Kentucky (KY), USA, Antwerp, Belgium, and Salindres, France between January and October of 2022.  These locations were chosen because of their proximity to manufacturing facilities (3M) that produce PFAS or are located in a downstream location.  It is important to note that PFAS are very mobile in aqueous environments and can move long distances from their source as was found in the samples taken for this study.  In fact, these chemicals have been found in the environment all around the world, including the Arctic.  Snow and soil samples used in this study exhibited significant concentrations of bis-FMeSI suggest that there is atmospheric deposition of bis-FMeSI.  The authors also found that there is a potential significant end-of-life issue with lithium-ion batteries with bis-FASIs detected in untreated landfill leachate.  While the source of the bis-FMeSI in the leachate cannot directly be confirmed, it is likely that increasing use and disposal of LiB technology will increase the concentration of bis-FMeSI over time.

 

Here is a quote from the discussion section of the paper with my bolds:

 

"This study demonstrates an international release of LiB-associated PFAS (bis-FASIs, particularly bis-FMeSI) to soil, sediment, and surface water and that concentrations of these compounds in the parts per billion are common, near manufacturing areas. When coupled with low-level detections in three Chinese seawater samples and characteristics consistent with vPvM classification, this suggests bis-FASI release is global. Furthermore, atmospheric emission of bis-FMeSI, as suggested by the MN data, may facilitate long-range transport of this subclass of PFAS. Toxicity data demonstrated that bis-FMeSI could change behavior and fundamental energy metabolic processes of aquatic organisms at low ng L−1 levels, suggesting that even relatively low-level concentrations will be of concern for aquatic vertebrates and invertebrates. In addition, the use of bis-FMeSI and other PFAS in LiB-enabled consumer products will lead to environmental contamination at end-of-life disposal (i.e., municipal solid waste landfills)....

 

In general, the challenges associated with bis-FASI occurrence, mobility, ecotoxicity, and recalcitrance are similar to those that have been realized for other PFAS; however, the potential for ongoing and increasing release of bis-FASIs resulting from exponentially growing demand for LiBs is distinct.

  

Let's close this rather technical posting with these thoughts.  Per- and polyfluorinated alkyl substances or PFAS are a chemical family of over 10000 chemicals that do not appear in nature, they are persistent man-made (anthropogenic) chemicals which break down very, very slowly over time.  This has earned them the moniker "Forever Chemicals".  According to Chemtrust, the negative impact of these these chemicals can:

 

1.) Interfere with the reproductive system and the development of the foetus


2.) Impact the immune system and have been linked to reduced responses to vaccines in children


3.) Promote the development of certain cancers (e.g. kidney and testicular cancer)


4.) Interfere with the hormonal system (so they are called endocrine disruptors)


As noted in this posting, PFAS are found globally.  Here is a map showing contamination sites across Europe to give you a sense of the scale of the problem:

 


In conclusion, when you hear your local politician tout the greenness of electric vehicles, keep in mind that the batteries powering these vehicles contain "forever contaminants/forever chemicals" that will have a significant negative impact on life on Planet Earth and that the growing mandated use of EVs will only worsen the problem.  I would also recommend that you remember that the vast majority of politicians have absolutely no training in chemistry and the ultimate impact of their decisions on the global environment.


Monday, June 24, 2024

Chrystia Freeland and the 2024 World Economic Forum Meeting in Davos - A Conflict of Interest?

Canada has the dubious privilege of having a Deputy Prime Minister and Finance Minister who serves Klaus Schwab as a member of the Board of Trustees of the World Economic Forum.  As such, Chrystia Freeland's attendance at the annual WEF meeting held in Davos, Switzerland is a rather questionable adventure given that she has the option of attending the meeting as a representative of the voters of Canada or as a representative of Klaus Schwab or both.  This has become a sticking point for the federal Conservatives, particularly MP Leslyn Lewis who has repeatedly brought up the subject in Canada's House of Commons.

 

Here is an exchange between Ms. Lewis and Ms. Freeland as recorded in Hansard, the official written record of the proceedings of the House of Commons for Wednesday June 19, 2024:

  

Ms. Leslyn Lewis:

 

"With regard to Canada’s participation in the World Economic Forum Annual Meeting in Davos, Switzerland, from January 15 to 19, 2024: (a) how many individuals were part of Canada’s delegation; (b) who were the members of the delegation, including, for each, their (i) name, (ii) title, (iii) role; (c) what are the details of all meetings held in Davos involving the Deputy Prime Minister, including, for each, the (i) date, (ii) names and titles of the attendees, (iii) purpose of the meeting, (iv) agenda items, (v) summary of what occurred at the meeting, including any agreements made; (d) what are the details of all meetings held in Davos involving members of the Canadian delegation other than the Deputy Prime Minister, including, for each, the (i) date, (ii) names and titles of the attendees, (iii) purpose of the meeting, (iv) agenda items, (v) summary of what occurred at the meeting, including anything that was agreed to; (e) what are the details, including the summary of terms, of any agreements entered into during the forum; (f) what are the details of all follow-up action taken by the government as a result of what happened at the forum; (g) what are the details of all memoranda or briefing notes prepared to support Canada’s delegation to the forum, including, for each, the (i) date, (ii) sender, (iii) recipient, (iv) title, (v) subject matter, (vi) summary of contents, (vii) file number; and (h) what was the total cost to the taxpayer, broken down by category of expense?"


Hon. Chrystia Freeland (Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Finance, Lib.): 

 

"Mr. Speaker, the Department of Finance response to parts (a) through (h) is as follows:


The World Economic Forum Annual Meeting was held in Davos, Switzerland, from January 15 to 19, 2024. As the Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Finance, I attended from January 16 to January 19, 2024, to advance Canadian economic interests.


"I held meetings with business leaders and other participants, including members of the Ukrainian delegation; a variety of business leaders about opportunities for Canada; and foreign government leaders and elected representatives.


I also participated in a panel entitled “No Recovery without Trade and Investment". Participants included Brian Moynihan, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of the Bank of America; Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, Director-General of the World Trade Organization; and Valdis Dombrovskis, European Commissioner for Trade.

 

Regarding the Department of Finance response to part (h): please note that travel expenditures for senior level departmental officers or employees, Ministers, ministerial advisors and ministerial staff are proactively disclosed on Open.Canada.ca (https://search.open.canada.ca/travel/)."

 

You will notice that Ms. Freeland was particularly reluctant to provide any details about the contingent that accompanied her to the 2024 edition of the Davos meeting nor did she provide any of her memoranda or briefing notes used during the meeting.  One thing that we do know is that the trip cost Canadian taxpayers significant tax dollars as shown here:

 


This is not the first time that Freeland has availed herself of Canadians' tax dollars for her junkets to Davos.

 

While she claims that she represented Canada at Davos 2024, we have no way of knowing how much time she spent on her duties as a World Economic Forum representative.  At the very least and as I have pointed out in the past, the World Economic Forum is quite capable of financing the travel expenses of its Trustees as shown on this screen capture from its 2022 - 2023 Annual Report which you can find here:

 


With total revenue of US$457.6 million and assets of US$840.4 million effective June 30, 2023, one would think that Ms. Freeland would avail herself funding provided by her "globalist masters" rather than stiffing Canadian taxpayers for $12,170.73 when travelling to the annual Davos extravaganza.

 

But, then again, this is what happens when you put yourself into a situation where there is clearly a conflict of interest.


Sunday, June 23, 2024

How Washington is Begging for War with China

In the monthly archive of the foreign military sales which appear on the Defense Security Cooperation Agency's website for the month of June 2024, we find the following announcements of sales to Taiwan:

 

1.) Sale of Switchblade 300 Anti-Personnel and Anti-Armour Loitering Missile Systems:

 


Here is some background on the Switchblade 300 Block 20:

 


2.) Sale of Altius 600M-V Unmanned Aerial Vehicles:

 



Here is some background on the Altius 600M:

 


3.) Sale of F-16 Non-Standard Spare and Repair Parts:

 


4.) Sale of F-16 Standard Spare and Repair Parts:

 

 

These four sales of materiel to Taiwan in the month of June 2024 total $660.2 million.

 

All four of these sales fall under the proclamation that "the proposed sale of this equipment and support will not alter the basic military balance in the region".  If that was the case, why approve the sales?  As well, I'm sure that China's leadership would wholeheartedly agree that this is not a direct threat to their plans for the region.

 

Of the sales, the sale of 291 Altius 600m-V Unmanned Aerial Vehicles and 720 Switchblade 300 drones follow this speech by Deputy Secretary of Defense Kathleen Hicks' comments at a lunchtime speech in September 2023:

 

"Last week I gave a speech, you all may know, about our need to innovate with urgency in this enduring age of strategic competition with the PRC. And there I described, in some detail, much of what we have been doing to enable and unleash the potential of U.S. and partner innovators....

 

And we've been doing quite a lot: Mapping and debugging DoD's innovation ecosystem. Rapidly iterating and investing to be a data-driven and AI-empowered military now. Incentivizing more joint experimentation and concept development. Extending bridges and express lanes over the so-called valley of death; of course, there are many valleys of death. Accelerating software acquisition and procurement of innovative technologies. And so much more. 

 

Why the urgency? Because our main strategic competitor today, the PRC, has spent the last 20 years building a modern military carefully crafted to blunt the operational advantages we've enjoyed for decades....

 

Last week, I announced our Replicator initiative — the latest effort to overcome the production valley of death, beginning with accelerating the scaling of all-domain attritable autonomous systems.

 

First, let's be crystal clear: Replicator is not a new program of record. We're not creating a new bureaucracy. And we will not be asking for new money in FY24. Not all problems need new money; we are problem-solvers, and we intend to self-solve.

 

So, Replicator will use existing funding, existing programming lines, and existing authorities to accelerate production and delivery at scale — by exerting leadership focus and attention on a singular operational challenge and maturing solutions, because that's what ultimately delivers....

 

With Replicator, we're beginning with all-domain, attritable autonomy, or ADA2, to help us overcome the PRC's advantage in mass: more ships, more missiles, more forces....

 

Let me give you a window into the possibilities of all-domain, attritable autonomy.

 

Imagine distributed pods of self-propelled ADA2 systems afloat, powered by the sun and other virtually-limitless resources, packed with sensors aplenty, enough to give us new, reliable sources of information in near-real-time.

 

Imagine fleets of ground-based ADA2 systems delivering novel logistics support, scouting ahead to keep troops safe, or securing DoD infrastructure.

 

Imagine constellations of ADA2 systems on orbit, flung into space scores at a time, numbering so many that it becomes impossible to eliminate or degrade them all. 

 

Imagine flocks of ADA2 systems, flying at all sorts of altitudes, doing a range of missions, building on what we've seen in Ukraine. They could be deployed by larger aircraft, launched by troops on land or sea, or take off themselves.

 

Bigger-picture, ADA2 systems let us think and act differently in doing things we've always done. Recall in Ukraine, a Patriot battery intercepted a Russian hypersonic missile; that's how traditional platforms do missile defense — and it's an incredible accomplishment, underscoring why we need them. 

 

Elsewhere, ADA2 systems might counter missiles differently — perhaps like active protection systems on a tank, or other types of countermeasures. 

 

And those are just a handful of the use cases for ADA2 systems."

 

She refers to it as "the small, smart and cheap" philosophy of warfare through the use of thousands of drones which will be used to overwhelm the Chinese advantage in "mass".

 

Washington has taken the first steps toward its new "Replicator Initiative" by arming Taiwan with Switchblade 300 Anti-Personnel and Anti-Armour Loitering Missile and Altius 600m-V drone systems.  How the nation's ruling class can think that China won't view these sales as anything but a provocation over its stated goal of reunifying Mainland China and Taiwan is beyond my comprehension.


Wednesday, June 19, 2024

The Outlook for Electric Vehicles - How Do Consumers Feel?

Western governments are doing their very best to force feed voters into a carbon-free (according to them), electric vehicle future.  Sometimes, getting the masses that sweat while they work to obey government edicts is like herding cats; it looks good on paper but it doesn't always work.

  

The 2024 edition of the Mobility Consumer Pulse study by McKinsey & Co found that consumers are not as enamoured with electric vehicles as the ruling class would have us believe.  Let's look at some key points from the study which looks at consumer preferences from the world's 15 largest automobile markets including Japan, China, the United States, Norway, South Africa, Australia and Brazil among others:

 

1.) Likelihood that current EV owners would switch back to Internal Combustion Engine (ICE) vehicles:

 

Australia - 49.21 percent

 

United States - 46.47 percent

 

Brazil - 38.4 percent

 

China - 27.64 percent

 

Germany - 24.41 percent

 

Norway - 17.78 percent

 

France - 17.68 percent

 

Italy - 14.8 percent

 

Japan - 12.86 percent

 

The reasons for switching back to ICE vehicles were because the total cost of ownership is too high (34.5 percent), inability to charge at home (33.8 percent) and the stress associated with needing to charge (i.e. range anxiety) (31.9 percent).  The inability to charge at home is a key issue for consumers living in densely populated urban areas where the only parking available is on-street which means that EV owners have to use inadequate and unreliable public charging infrastructure. 

 

2.) High cost of purchasing: 45 percent of respondents were unwilling to switch to EVs because they are too expensive even with taxpayer-funded government subsidies, 33 percent had charging concerns and 39 percent had range anxiety that would prevent them from switching to an EV.

  

3.) Range expectations are not being met: range expectations have increased by about 30 percent over the past five years and since 2022, consumers are demanding range increases of 5 percent but actual range has increased only 2 percent.  Consumers expect range of at least 291 miles (466 kilometres) on average before they would purchase an EV which puts many of the lower priced models out of contention, leaving consumers with premium-priced options like Tesla and a few others.  More specifically, in the United States, consumers expect an EV battery to have a range of 302 miles (486 kilometres) when the average advertised range is around 220 miles (354 kilometres) and the average actual experienced range is 190 miles (306 kilometres).  Consumers also must keep in mind that range decreases with high and low temperatures and battery aging so the vehicle with a 291 mile range today will not have that range in the future.  

 

Not everyone is going to agree with the findings of this study but it is interesting to see that there is some significant resistance to the government-mandated switch to battery electric vehicles.  Certainly, a BEV is of benefit to certain groups of consumers but it is also clear that consumers in some geographic locales will find that full EVs are less than a desirable option and that a one size solution does not fit all.

 

Sources - 


1.) Autopian

 

2.) Wards 100 

 

3.) Repairer Driven News 

Tuesday, May 28, 2024

Saudi Arabia's View on a Palestinian State

With Israel continuing with its punishment of Gaza's civilian population, recent comments from Saudi Foreign Minister Prince Faisal bin Farhan bin Abdullah bin Faisal bin Farhan Al Saud are of particular interest.  

 

Here are bin Farhan's comments on a two-state solution when asked about the reactions of Israel after the formal recognition of a Palestinian state from Norway, Spain and Ireland:

 


Here is a transcript of bin Farhan's views:


"That's the nub of the problem.  The issue of Israel recognizing that a two-state solution is in its own interest.  I firmly believe that a two-state solution, that the establishment of a credible Palestinian state serves not just the interests of the Palestinians.  It delivers their right to self-determination.  It is also in the interest of Israel and delivers the security that Israel needs and deserves and the fact that the current government in Israel doesn't realize that, of course, is a matter of extreme concern.  And, I've said before that we must move towards and, I think, that's one of the issues we discussed today..."

 

And, here's the key:

 

"....we're trying to work towards is building a momentum to reinvigorate the two-state solution independent of Israel's position because Israel doesn't get to decide whether or not the Palestinians have a right to self-determination.  This is something that is enshrined in the United Nations Charter.  It is something that is enshrined into international law.  It is also a founding principle of the United Nations' decision to found Israel so it is absolutely necessary that Israel accepts that it cannot exist without the existence of a Palestinian state, that its security is served by building a Palestinian state."

 

As historical background, on November 29, 1947, the United Nations adopted Resolution 181 which stated the following:

 

"Independent Arab and Jewish States and the Special International Regime for the City of Jerusalem, set forth in part III of this plan, shall come into existence in Palestine two months after the evacuation of the armed forces of the mandatory Power has been completed but in any case not later than 1 October 1948.  The boundaries of the Arab State, the Jewish State, and the City of Jerusalem shall be as described in parts II and III below."

 

Here is how Resolution 181 defined the boundaries of Israel:

 

"The north-eastern sector of the Jewish State (Eastern) Galilee) is bounded on the north and west by the Lebanese frontier and on the east by the frontiers of Syria and Transjordan.  It includes the whole of the Hula Basin, Lake Tiberias, the whole of the Beisan sub-district, the boundary line being extended to the crest of the Gilboa mountains and the Wadi Malih. From there the Jewish State extends north-west, following the boundary described in respect of the Arab State.

  

The Jewish Section of the coastal plain extends from a point between Minat et Qila and Nabi Yunis in the Gaza sub-district and includes the towns of Haifa and Tel-Aviv, leaving Jaffa as an enclave of the Arab State.  The eastern frontier of the Jewish State follows the boundary described in respect of the Arab State.

 

The Beersheba area comprises the whole of the Beersheba sub-district, including the Negeb and the eastern part of the Gaza sub-district, but excluding the town of Beersheba and those areas described in respect of the Arab State.  It includes also a strip of land along the Dead Sea stretching from the Beersheba-Hebron sub-district boundary line to Ein Geddi, as described in respect of the Arab State."

 

Here is a map showing the 1947 partition plan for Palestine which clearly shows that the West Bank and Gaza were to be part of the Arab state:

 


Here are a series of maps showing the dispossession of Palestinians from the land that was granted to them under Resolution 181 since 1946:

 

 

Lastly, here is a map showing the Israeli government's version of its own two-state solution:

 

Saudi Arabia has very significant influence among its peers in the Arab sphere.  These recent comments about Israel's reluctance to implement a two-state solution from a member of the Saudi royal family show that Saudi Arabia's recent moves toward a normalization of diplomatic relations between Saudi Arabia and Israel are dead on arrival.

 

Thursday, May 16, 2024

Making Meat out of Soya and Saving Planet Earth for the Ruling Class

There is little doubt that the "powers that ought not to be" are spending considerable energy on changing our eating habits all in the name of preserving the planet (for the ruling class) and making money (once again, for the ruling class).  This movement is leading to all sorts of new foods that are plant-based concoctions that attempt to mimic meat.  As a very long-term vegetarian, I find these developments very interesting.

 

A Luxembourg-based company called Moolec Science touts themselves as a science-based food ingredient company focussed on the use of Molecular Farming technology as shown here:

 


Moolec is a spin-off from Bioceres Group and a partner of Bioceres Crop Solutions which are "enabling the transition to a carbon neutral agriculture".

 

Moolec's purpose is to "redefine the way we produce animal-based food, for good and for all", another phrase for genetic modification or GMO.  In their case, Moolec refers to their position in the industry as a pioneer in Molecular Farming for the alternative protein food industry.  The company is accomplishing this goal by using its technology to "include animal proteins' gene DNA code inside the genome of the main plants used in food" with the target of improving taste, texture and nutritional value, using broadly used crops like safflower, soybean and pea.  The company claims that their cost-effective and environmentally friendly approach will create plants that work as small factories, producing animal proteins with just sun and water.

  

Here's the company's key claim:

 

"Simple.  Just science."

 

Here's a screen capture from their website outlining one of their products, Piggy Sooy:

 

 

According to a June 2023 press release, Piggy Sooy produced an animal protein expression level of up to 26.6 percent of total soluble protein in soy seeds which can be directly observed due to the pink coloration of Moolec's soybeans as you can see on this graphic:

 

 

Here is a quote from the press release:

 

"Moolec’s CEO & Co-Founder Gastón Paladini said: “Piggy Sooy represents tangible and visual proof that Moolec’s technology has the capacity to achieve significant yields in plants to produce meat proteins. With this groundbreaking achievement, Moolec consolidates its position as a category creator and a pioneer in Molecular Farming for the food industry. Our plant biology team is writing the history of science in food, I couldn’t be prouder of them.”

 

This scientific milestone consolidates the Molecular Farming path as one of the most valuable alternative technologies to produce animal proteins, given that plants can function as animal protein factories in a more efficient manner than initially expected. This enhanced efficiency of plants has the potential to improve the economics of the Company's business model.

 

Moolec Science is producing several meat proteins in plants as functional ingredients to improve the taste, appearance, texture, and nutrition of meat alternatives. Due to its enhanced functionality and final application, the Company also highlighted that these food ingredients could also be potentially commercialized within the ~$600 billion traditional processing meat industry."

  

You might ask yourself why anyone would want to do this to a helpless soybean seed.  Apparently the inclusion of pig genes in soy beans will make for a tastier fake meat product.  

  

According to the company's fiscal year 2024 update from March 13, 2024, the Piggy Sooy Platform has started its third generation of soybean seed propagation and the fourth generation of seeds are expected to be harvested in April 2024. Molecular analysis of the third generation seeds shows that they contain a stable number of porcine myoglobin gene copies.

  

The company is also working on pea seeds that contain bovine (cow) myoglobin genes and that the genes are stable across plant generations and a novel yeast strain that is being developed as a dietary supplement and food ingredient. 

  

And, here is the latest development courtesy of our friends at the United States Department of Agriculture:

 

It may be just me and my vegetarian  ways but it is beyond my comprehension why anyone would want to eat a pork-based soya product.  Plants producing meat proteins would seem to be the zenith of the Frankenfood world but, then again, maybe it will save Planet Earth (for the ruling class because we know that they only have our best interests at heart).