Viewpoint: GMOs are an overlooked but consequential solution to climate change

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Credit: Shutterstock

GMOs, or genetically modified organisms, are not only a lot less scary than pop culture would lead you to believe — they are one of the most overlooked solutions to combating threats to our planet.

Forty-nine years after the modern environmental movement was born in 1970, marking the start of the annual holiday we know as Earth Day, climate change is expected to cause 250,000 additional deaths per year. Ninety percent of all global disasters are caused by weather, and 1.9 million homes in the U.S. are projected to be underwater by 2100. It’s ironic, then, that as a society we’ve come to vilify a tool at our disposal that can help us in the fight against climate change: GMOs.

Related article:  Does Uganda need GMOs? Scientists look to gene editing to spur innovation

In 2016 alone, growing GMO crops helped decrease CO2 emissions equivalent to taking 16.7 million cars off the road for an entire year. GMOs also reduce the amount of pesticides that need to be sprayed, while simultaneously increasing the amount of crops available to be eaten and sold. Over the last 20 years, GMOs have reduced pesticide applications by 8.2% and helped increase crop yields by 22%.

If we truly want to unite in the fight against climate change, it’s imperative we establish public acceptance of GMOs.

Read full, original article: GMOs have benefits for health and the environment

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