Feeding the world: Will GMO seeds rescue yields as global climates dry and heat up?

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Take the argument that more heat- and drought-resistant seeds are what’s needed to cope with climate change. The good people at Monsanto have spent lots of advertising money to spread this message.  And joined by two other high-profile backers of genetically modified organisms—the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and the Warren Buffet Foundation—Monsanto has claimed to have already increased corn yields in Africa by 25 percent to 35 percent. There’s a catch, though: The only documentation for those results was found on Monsanto’s own website and was later removed.

Most peer-reviewed research has found little reason for optimism that GMO seeds will revolutionize yields in the face of climate change. The most authoritative analysis is found in Agriculture at a Crossroads, the landmark report issued by the International Assessment of Agricultural Knowledge, Science and Technology for Development in 2009. Testifying before Congress, Robert Watson, the scientist who directed the assessment, explained in the gentlest possible terms that GMO crops are an unproven technology whose benefits remain highly uncertain: “[I]t is likely to be several years at least before these [GMO] traits might reach possible commercial application [my emphasis].”

So better seeds alone won’t save us.

The GLP aggregated and excerpted this blog/article to reflect the diversity of news, opinion, and analysis. Read full, original post: How To Feed the World After Climate Change