Simple genome engineering of bacteria and yeast is just the beginning of the rise of the true biohackers. This is a community of several thousand people, with skill sets ranging from self-taught software hackers to biology postdocs who are impatient with the structure of traditional institutional lab work.
The usual way of growing cotton is highly petrochemical-intensive, requiring 110 pounds of nitrogen fertilizer per acre. Some of the fertilizer is broken down by soil bacteria into nitrate, a toxic and highly soluble chemical that can leach into groundwater or get washed into lakes, creating oxygenless dead zones.
I've been collecting articles on extremophile bacteria for at least the last ten years. I find them fascinating, whether they live in boiling pools at Yellowstone, around thermal vents at the floors of the oceans, or on Mars, where NASA has been searching for them as the first evidence of life beyond Earth.