Greg Koblentz, member of the Center’s Scientists Working Group of Chemical and Biological Threats, spoke with the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists about his work co-leading a project on BSL-3+ and BSL-4 labs and the government research policies that govern them.
George Mason University biosecurity expert Gregory Koblentz, who co-leads the project with Filippa Lentzos, a King’s College London researcher, said shining a light on the proliferation of the labs can help cut through misinformation about them and allow for a clear-eyed look at how these beneficial, yet also potentially risky facilities are managed. “One of the goals of our project is to increase transparency and educate the public and policy-makers about these labs’ activities and what governance measures are necessary to ensure they are operating safely, securely, and responsibly,” Koblentz said. “Accurate information is a prerequisite for an informed debate on the benefits and risks posed by these labs.” (The Bulletin partnered with the team to produce an interactive map featuring information on the labs.)
Why are many countries building new high-containment labs? Are there adequate regulations in place to ensure labs are managed safely? I talked to Koblentz to learn the answers to these questions and more. Read more