Factory Forests? USDA Considers Approval of Genetically Engineered Trees
2013 11 12

From: Organic Connections

As the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) considers whether to approve the first genetically engineered (GE) forest tree for commercial use, Center for Food Safety (CFS) released its new report, Genetically Engineered Trees: The New Frontier of Biotechnology. The report details the potential ecological and socioeconomic hazards of GE trees currently under commercial development.

USDA is currently reviewing a GE Eucalyptus for unrestricted planting. Eucalyptus is primarily cultivated to provide pulp for paper and “wood pellets,” which are used for fuel. The GE tree, developed by the biotechnology corporation ArborGen, is engineered to grow in colder climates. ArborGen hopes to cultivate GE tree plantations across much of the southeastern United States.

Debbie Barker, international program director for Center for Food Safety, and editor of the report, stated, “Commercializing GE trees could be devastating to the environment. ‘Factory forests’ will accelerate and expand large-scale, chemical-intensive, monoculture plantations. We need to understand the risks in order to determine if GE trees are a sustainable way forward or a dangerous diversion.”

GE trees have been promoted under a banner of environmental sustainability. However, the report reveals that GE tree plantations would require vast amounts of fertilizers, pesticides, and water. Further, tree plantations reduce biodiversity, can increase greenhouse gas emissions, and lead to deforestation.

[...]

Read the full article at: organicconnectmag.com



Related Articles
Japanese Scientists Engineer Pollenless Cedar Trees (What could possibly go wrong?)
UK to plant 250,000 ash trees to outwit deadly fungus
A crime by the highway: Poisoning trees to make billboards easier to see
Scientists Claim Trees Give Off Electricity
Leaves Of Gold: Researchers Find Gold Growing On Eucalyptus Trees
Indonesia’s "Frankentrees" turn cocoa dream into nightmare
Singapore’s man-made ‘Supertrees’ flourish amongst city’s concrete jungle


Latest News from our Front Page

Norway Joins the Race to Develop Killer Robots
2014 10 24
Norway is a large exporter of weapons, which makes the resolution of the debate about creating killer robots an important issue for everyone.  One could debate the overall merits or failings of robotic systems, but an area that clearly has become a point for concern on all sides is the emergence of "killer robots." According to robotics pioneer, David Hanson, ...
Gene That Once Aided Survival in the Arctic Found to Have Negative Impact on Health Today
2014 10 23
In individuals living in the Arctic, researchers have discovered a gene variant that arose thousands of years ago and most likely provided an evolutionary advantage for processing high-fat diets or for surviving in a cold environment; however, the variant also seems to increase the risk of hypoglycemia, or low blood sugar, and infant mortality in today’s northern populations. {snip} “Our work ...
The Ebola hoax: questions, answers, and the false belief in the “One It”
2014 10 23
“The Reality Manufacturing Company doesn’t just sell ‘fake paintings’ that are easy to spot. No. They also sell images that are geared to mesh with people’s deeply held instincts and thereby produce rigid false beliefs. People are sure that if they gave up such beliefs, their world would fall apart and blow away in the wind.” ...
New Controversial Theory Suggests "Hobbits" Were Not Human - Who Were These Mysterious Beings?
2014 10 23
The origin of the Hobbit species remains a challenging subject to scientists. The Hobbit’s discovery confirmed the view that the Earth was once populated by many species of human, but new research the Hobbit’s were not human at all! So, who were these mysterious beings? Where did they come from? The idea that our species, Homo sapiens, was the only species of human on ...
Right into enemy hands? ISIS shows off new weapons allegedly airdropped by US (VIDEO)
2014 10 23
Islamic State has published a new video in which a jihadist shows off brand-new American hardware, which was purportedly intended for the Kurds they are fighting in the Syrian border town of Kobani. The undated video, posted by the unofficial IS mouthpiece “a3maq news”, sees a jihadist showing several boxes of munitions with English-language markings, with a parachute spread out on ...
More News »