We found out that aspestos causes a variation of diseases that are quite mean. We removed asbestos from the buildings, decommissioned the ships built with and had a generation of sailors and construction workers where bad lung diseases and some other sicknesses caused quite a few to live and die in agony.
If we find out that cellphones cause some form of super-agressive brain cancer that pops up quickly after 15-20 years of exposure to GSM microwaves, then tomorrow all cell-towser will be on the ground and our generation will the the one with brain cancer. No big deal. Some first world kids die off, humanity can live with that easyly.
Same with Nucler Power. Even such disasters as chernobyl or fukushima are compareatively contained. ... Ok, I'm sounding cynical here, fukushima isn't contained, it's a hideous mess, but one can still see this possibly retreating in the next few thousand years .... errrm, well ... anyway ...
All, or most of it, quite simple, lesson learned and humanity moves on. Aspestos is regulated, Germany drops nuclear, 3 more fukushimas and the rest will follow, all more or less fine and dandy.
However - big however - add in biotech and things look vastly different.
Only one haywire designed bacterium has to get into the wild and we're all dead 5 months later. All humans on the entire planet. Think "Planet of the Apes Prevolution" style, only without remaining protagonists.
Nuclear is kinda so-so (except for some idiot at the nuke warfare trigger of course), but biotech - no way. One wrong move and fukushima looks like a walk in the park. Imagine Ebola, but with the brakes removed.
Basically he's right. You don't fuck with biotech. And we need serious regulations in place for that. I second.