When the Green Party, by way of its London Assembly member Jenny Jones, appeared to endorse the recent anti-GM protests at Rothamsted Research in Hertfordshire, which involved a plan to “decontaminate” (read “vandalise”) a wheat trial, its commitment to science was loudly called into question. Writer Nick Cohen branded the protest organisers a “quasi-religious movement”, adherents of the “green faith” who harboured “an almost pagan delusion that nature is pure and must be saved”.
Mark Lynas, author of The God Species and a longstanding critic of environmentalist orthodoxy, is similarly scathing. “There’s a sense that a substantial proportion of conventional eco-philosophy is not based on rational empirical evidence,” he says. “They claim to be comfortable with science on climate change, but show the reverse inclination when it comes to issues like GM and nuclear power.”