Calestous Juma, professor of the practice of international development at Harvard—and “one of the most innovative thinkers on how to harness new technologies for economic development”—believes genetically modified (GM) crops are a necessary agricultural solution to help address the challenges of climate change and population growth, a Council on Foreign Relations blog states.
“It doesn’t make sense to reduce the size of the toolbox when the challenges are expanding,” Dr. Juma said in an interview with Isobel Coleman, Senior Fellow for U.S. Foreign Policy at the Council on Foreign Relations. He predicts in 2012 “there will be more GM crops grown in developing countries than in developed countries.” READ MORE »
WSJ op-ed: Nestle’s Chairman says biotech is essential for global food security
In an op-ed in The Wall Street Journal, chairman of Nestlé Peter Brabeck-Letmathe says Europe’s refusal to use biotechnology “has halted the multi-decade rise in agricultural productivity that has allowed us, so far, to feed more mouths than many people believed was possible.” Read more.
Scientists point out EPA proposed regulatory burdens are obstacle to innovation
The Journal of the Federation of American Societies for Experimental Biology (FASEB Journal) published an article by Dr. Nina Fedoroff and Dr. Bruce Chassy which says the EPA’s proposal to expand regulatory burdens would create obstacles to scientific innovation.
“A further increase in the regulatory burden would impose steep barriers to scientific innovation and product development across all sectors of our economy and would not only fail to enhance safety, but would be likely to prolong reliance on less safe and obsolete practices.” Read more.
Prominent food industry expert condemns attacks on GM papayas in Hawaii
Perishable Pundit, an online publication by the prominent food industry author and news commentator Jim Prevor, calls the devastation caused by attacks on papayas in Hawaii “unacceptable.” His article features an interview with Delan Perry from the Hawaii Papaya Association, who points out the need for GM papaya varieties to fight plant disease. Read more.
The World Bank’s 2010 World Development Report highlights agricultural biotechnology’s contributions to international development and climate change mitigation. Excerpts from the report showcasing biotechnology’s benefits include:
“Biotechnology could provide a transformational approach to addressing the tradeoffs between land and water stress and agricultural productivity, because it could improve crop productivity, increase crop adaptation to climatic stresses such as drought and heat, mitigate greenhouse gas emissions, reduce pesticide and herbicide applications.” (p. 166)
“For example, advances in biotechnology offer potential for adapting to climate-related events (droughts, heat waves, pests, and diseases) affecting agriculture and forestry.” (p. 303)
“Agriculture and health depend on biotechnology to develop new technologies” (p. 315)
The entire report can be read here.