Dan Charles

Dan Charles is an independent writer and radio producer who contributes regularly to NPR's technology coverage. He is currently filling in temporarily as an editor on the National Desk, responsible for coverage of the environment and the western United States. He is author of Master Mind: The Rise and Fall of Fritz Haber, the Nobel Laureate Who Launched the Age of Chemical Warfare (Ecco, 2005). He also wrote Lords of the Harvest: Biotech, Big Money, and the Future of Food (Perseus, 2001), about the making of genetically engineered crops. From 1993 to 1999, Charles was a technology correspondent for NPR.

Charles covers a wide swath of advanced technology, including telecommunications, energy, agriculture, computers, and biotechnology. He's reported for NPR from India, Russia, Mexico, and various parts of Western Europe. Before joining NPR, Charles was a U.S. correspondent for New Scientist, a major British science magazine.

He studied economics and international affairs at American University, graduating magna cum laude in 1982. In 1982-83, he studied in Bonn, West Germany, under a scholarship from the German Academic Exchange Service. He was a guest researcher at the Institute for Peace Research and Security Policy at the University of Hamburg, Germany, in 1986. In 1989-90, he was a Knight Science Journalism fellow at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

Pages

6:00am

Sat June 24, 2006
Science

A Noah's Ark for Earth's Seeds

Originally published on Sat June 24, 2006 8:59 am

Cary Fowler is the executive director of the Global Crop Diversity Trust, based in Rome.
Dan Charles, NPR

Norway has launched a unique construction project on the remote Norwegian island of Svalbard, halfway between the Arctic Circle and the North Pole. It's an underground vault for agricultural seeds, a kind of Noah's Ark for millions of varieties of wheat, rice, and hundreds of other crops that farmers no longer plant in their fields.

For a soft-spoken man from western Tennessee named Cary Fowler, it's the culmination of a lifelong -- and controversial -- campaign.

Read more

Pages