How do you feed the world, provide biofuels and remain sustainable? Kristala Prather shows us how microbes could provide an answer.

Microbes, small living systems which take sugars and turn them into fuel, could help to solve the world’s energy shortfall as well as cutting greenhouse gas emissions, explains Kristala Prather in the above video.

We have to be able to take ideas from a lab into the real world, she argues. Synthetic biology is used to custom design microbes that produce replacements for diesel and gasoline. If this work succeeds, we’ll drastically reduce the consumption of oil, and emissions of greenhouse gases into the environment.

Kristala Prather is an Associate Professor of Chemical Engineering at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT).