Introduction to Ecological Implications
"This is the Y2K of agriculture." - Chuck Simmons, President of Bio-Plant Research
Loss of biodiversity is the most serious ecological concern surrounding agricultural biotechnology. Biotech companies are claming that biotech agriculture will not only help efficient crop production, but will also improve ecosystem health. However, rising concern is calling for closer examination of genetically modified crops and their effects on the environment.
Some of the most prevalent concerns are:
Genetic engineering is a new and inexact science. Protecting crops from contamination may be nearly impossible considering the insistence of biotechnology in agriculture. Health damaging effects can never be reversed and without proper legislation, health and environmental damage will continue.
- The implications of genetic pollution - the spread of genes from GM crops to outside plants.
- Ecological concerns for farmers and how GM crops will effect their farmland, crops, and water sources.
- The effects of Bt crops, crops with a genetic coding for insecticide, and how it will affect insects and organisms that come in contact with them.
- Terminator seeds, that are genetically engineered to die after one year.
I. What is Biodiversity?
II. Bt and Monarch Butterflies
III. Current Uses Of Biotechnology in Agriculture
IV. Herbicide Tolerant Plant Varieties
V. Ecological Concerns for Farmers
VI. Dangers of Genetic Pollution
VII. Terminating Seeds