Boulder County, Colorado’s GMO ban destabilizes the environment and economy

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This article or excerpt is included in the GLP’s daily curated selection of ideologically diverse news, opinion and analysis of biotechnology innovation.

[Editor’s note: Mara Abbott is the community columnist at the Boulder Daily Camera and a professional women’s bicycle racer.]

[“Economic, Environmental and Social Implications of Cropping Systems in Boulder County,” a 2015 briefing paper for the county commissioners, is] a snapshot of data gathered from six Northern Colorado farms between 2011 and 2015, and it documented organic crops that had released six times more sequestered carbon from the soil and used 10 times more water than genetically engineered varieties. GE crops also decreased pesticide use by 80 percent compared to their conventional counterparts. I was paralyzed. I had always self-identified as a good Boulder environmentalist, and figured that meant that non-organic was a non-starter (and the organic definition excludes GMOs). Now where was I supposed to buy my kale?

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Mara Abbott

My doubts about the GMO ban’s merits blossomed. After all, the ban’s loudest supporters claimed to be fighting for reduced pesticide use and more sustainable cropping methods.

The county’s Cropland Policy defines sustainability with a balance of environmental, economic and social terms. The GMO ban sacrifices potential environmental gains, destabilizes the economic livelihood of individual farmers and threatens the ability of multi-generational families to continue tending the land in community with one another and Boulder County.

The GLP aggregated and excerpted this blog/article to reflect the diversity of news, opinion, and analysis. Read full, original post: Mara Abbott: GMO debate about everything except GMOs

For more background on the Genetic Literacy Project, read GLP on Wikipedia

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