It looks as though “algae evangelist” Dr. Mark Edwards has a few more believers.Dr. Edwards, Vice-President of Corporate Development and Marketing at Algae Biosciences Incorporated, is an outspoken advocate regarding algae’s potential in freedom foods, agribusiness, and sustainable energy. An Arizona State University professor, Dr. Edwards is also an award-winning author — with another accolade now requiring space in the trophy case. Abundance, which advocates a revolutionary approach to agriculture by endorsing the growth of sustainable, fossil-free foods, has won the 2011 Pinnacle Award for Best Book in the Environment category. Contemporary industrial foods are grown in genetic monocultures and suffer from “hidden hunger” due to worn-out soils, delivering empty calories from nutrient dilution that promote diabetes and obesity in our children, writes Dr. Edwards. The abundance approach, meanwhile, reverses nutrient dilution and pollution by cleaning and repairing ecosystems, and uses plentiful, non-fossil resources that will not run out — sunshine, carbon dioxide, and non-potable water.Nutrients in “freedom foods,” which are superior in taste and nutrition, contain 85 per cent less fat and cholesterol than industrial foods while delivering 50 to 200 per cent more vitamins, minerals and antioxidants, offering a wide array of health benefits. Eating low on the food chain, writes Dr. Edwards, yields significant benefits for consumer health, growers, and our planet.“Abundance growing methods mimic nature with algae to produce food, feeds, fertilizers, and other forms of energy using non-fossil resources,” says Dr. Edwards.“Abundance regenerates ecosystems and will enable us to leave a positive legacy for our children — affordable, healthy foods, plentiful natural resources, and robust ecosystems.”Dr. Edwards has published more than 100 articles encompassing business and science disciplines, and the most recent nine of his 18 books are part of the Green Algae Strategy Series, which focuses on sustainable and affordable food and energy production.Two previous works by Dr. Edwards were also award winners. Green Algae Strategy, published in 2009, won an Independent Publisher (IPPY) Book Awards gold medal. Meanwhile, The Tiny Plant That Saved Our Planet, released in 2010, earned a silver medal in the Best Children’s Book category at the 2011 Nautilus Book Awards.Edwards’ books are used in colleges, universities, and other halls of learning in more than a dozen countries for courses in biology, botany, biotechnology, the environment, sustainability, energy engineering, and global hunger. His ongoing Algae 101 column was named the No. 1 visited site by AlgaeIndustryMagazine.com earlier this year.This fall, Dr. Edwards was chosen to present two scientific papers promoting the wonders of algae for the 100 Year Starship Study, an initiative spearheaded by the United States government’s Defense Advance Research Project Agency (DARPA) in collaboration with the NASA Ames Research Center. Dr. Edwards presented his papers — one in the habitats and environmental science category, the other in biology and space medicine.