The Case for GMO's

By Keith Kloor | July 28, 2011 11:18 am

When you can grow more food using the same inputs of land, water and fertilizer, everyone — farmers, consumers, hungry people and anyone who cares about CO2 concentrations in the earth’s atmosphere — is better off.

From a profile of an environmentally-minded owner of a California-based R & D biotech company, who says he wants to

use the the tools of plant biotechnology, and point them at saving the environment.

I guess that makes him an enemy of Greenpeace and all the other anti-GMO fanatics who call themselves environmentalists.

CATEGORIZED UNDER: biotechnology, climate change, GMOs
  • Sashka

    Long term, GMO is not a solution. Condom is.

  • Keith Kloor

    But in the meantime, there are billions to feed, for many decades to come, so GMO’s better be the interim solution.

  • Tom Fuller

    I find opposition to GMOs to be of the same intellectual quality as opposition to vaccines. Funny how anti-vaxers get shifted from one pool of opponents to another, innit?

  • intrepid_wanders

    I was curious as to what some of the fuel was to the anti-GMO sentiment and found this from the wonderful Union of Concerned Scientists.

    Reading the article, one easily can see the bias and omissions  (i.e. Organic Farming is way better than Modern Convention etc.).  Anyhow, not being too knowledgeable in the field, I sought a counterview.  And, viola!

    An analysis of “Failure to Yield” by Doug Gurian-Sherman, Union of Concerned Scientists.

    Dr. Wayne Parrott of University of Georgia provides a more comprehensive and (dare I say…) scientific approach to point out Doug Gurian-Sherman’s nonsense.  

    Union of Concerned Scientists seem unconcerned with precision.  Though a side note, I do believe UCS have changed position on nuclear power from Greenpeace to neutral 😉

  • harrywr2

    intrepid_wanders Says:
    July 28th, 2011 at 2:16 pm
    <i>I was curious as to what some of the fuel was to the anti-GMO sentiment</i>
    Small farms(less then 100 acres) have a very hard time competing against large farms.
    Farm tractors range in size between something not much larger then a riding lawn mower to larger then a house. The cost of the person driving the tractor doesn’t change. The farmer with the largest acreage and biggest tractor is going to be able to win the price contest.
    Organic vs GMO provides a product differentiation that attempts to justify the higher unit costs of small scale farming.


  • Eli Rabett

    Harry, the cost of the person driving the tractor has increased orders of magnitude counting the training and knowledge that a modern farmer needs.


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About Keith Kloor

Keith Kloor is a NYC-based journalist, and an adjunct professor of journalism at New York University. His work has appeared in Slate, Science, Discover, and the Washington Post magazine, among other outlets. From 2000 to 2008, he was a senior editor at Audubon Magazine. In 2008-2009, he was a Fellow at the University of Colorado’s Center for Environmental Journalism, in Boulder, where he studied how a changing environment (including climate change) influenced prehistoric societies in the U.S. Southwest. He covers a wide range of topics, from conservation biology and biotechnology to urban planning and archaeology.


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