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Crop Biotechnology for the Environment?
KTH, School of Architecture and the Built Environment (ABE), Philosophy and History of Technology, Philosophy.ORCID iD: 0000-0003-0071-3919
KTH, School of Architecture and the Built Environment (ABE), Philosophy and History of Technology, Philosophy.
2013 (English)In: Journal of Agricultural and Environmental Ethics, ISSN 1187-7863, E-ISSN 1573-322X, Vol. 26, no 4, 759-770 p.Article, review/survey (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

In public debates, agricultural biotechnology is almost invariably discussed as a potential threat to the environment and to human health. Without downplaying the risks associated with this technology we emphasize that if properly regulated, it can be a forceful tool to solve environmental problems and promote human health. Agricultural biotechnology can reduce environmental problems in at least three ways: it can diminish the need for environmentally damaging agricultural practices such as pesticides, fertilizers, tillage, and irrigation. It can reduce the land area needed for agriculture, thus reducing the CO2 effect of agriculture and improving biodiversity. It can produce energy in a CO2-neutral way (especially if new technologies involving the cultivation of microalgae become successful). Furthermore, agricultural biotechnology can have positive effects on human health by decreasing occupational and dietary exposure to pesticides, improving the nutritional value of food, and producing pharmaceuticals more efficiently. We argue that those who wish to give high priority to environmental goals cannot afford any longer to be mere onlookers while others decide the future directions of agricultural biotechnology.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2013. Vol. 26, no 4, 759-770 p.
Keyword [en]
Agricultural biotechnology, Genetic modification, Recombinant DNA, Agricultural ethics, Food ethics
National Category
Philosophy Ecology Environmental Sciences related to Agriculture and Land-use
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-129121DOI: 10.1007/s10806-012-9405-zISI: 000323499700003Scopus ID: 2-s2.0-84883055883OAI: oai:DiVA.org:kth-129121DiVA: diva2:650177
Funder
Mistra - The Swedish Foundation for Strategic Environmental Research
Note

QC 20130920

Available from: 2013-09-20 Created: 2013-09-19 Last updated: 2017-12-06Bibliographically approved

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