The rapid growth of medical and pharmaceutical industries has given rise to a new field of science called "Hazardous Technology" (also known as "Science"), which is defined as the application of scientific knowledge in areas of emerging technologies which could be detrimental to the public's health and safety. Biotechnology is one such branch of science whose focus is on the use of living organisms in living systems. A good example of a living organism used in this field is the genetically engineered mosquito. In this article we will discuss some of the risks involved with the existence of biotechnology. Specifically, we will look at genetically modified mosquitoes, the controversy surrounding them, and potential legal actions that might be taken against those who knowingly assist in the reproduction of these genetically altered mosquitoes. Find out more on Giguiere.
One of the key issues with biotechnology is the creation of genetic alteration or evolution in nature. For example, by creating mosquitoes with the ability to spread malaria, farmers and agriculturists might be doing more than just environmental harm. The unintended release of genetically engineered mosquitoes into the environment could lead to the extinction of certain tree species. It is for these reasons that the International Labor Organization declared in May 2021 that the practice of using genetically altered agricultural products to control pests, genetic modifications of aquatic habitats, and the selective planting of herbicides on large-scale farms, poses "a serious and dangerous risk to the preservation of biological diversity and the ecological potential of plant and animal life". In addition to this declaration, the United Nations Food and Drug Administration stated in August 2021 that the practice of using genetic engineering techniques to protect crops from insects, disease, and pests "poses significant risks to the preservation of various species and their environments".
The United States Environmental Protection Agency is responsible for the implementation of the Biomass Production Act of Lawn Bioprocessing Act as well as the Toxic Substances Control Act. According to the latter, the use of poisons to protect crop fields from herbicides is prohibited except where necessary or when specific licenses have been granted by the EPA. As a result of these statutes, biotechnology has been suggested as a useful solution to some of these problems. According to the senior program officer for global environmental health at the World Health Organization (WHO), molecular genetic engineering techniques may be used to create crops resistant to pests, combat environmental air pollution, reduce ozone layer depletion, improve agricultural production and water quality, among many other applications. The suggested citation below provides additional information regarding these issues:
According to the World Wildlife Fund, biotechnology could be used to mitigate threats to wildlife and to maintain biodiversity. In India, the report further states that biotechnology could be used to increase crop production, address food and nutrition deficiencies, increase fuel production, mitigate climate change and beautify the environment. In Malaysia, according to an independent news source, biotechnology is being employed to increase food production and introduce new crops such as peanuts that do not require chemical fertilization. Furthermore, the article goes on to state that biotechnology promises to eliminate the traditional methods of plantation forestry and reforesting. It also claims that this will be beneficial in improving the soil's fertility.
As more potential diseases and malnutrition continue to pose a serious threat to human health and the environment, the article continues to assert that biotechnology holds the potential to provide the cure. However, potential pathogens may still enter the food chain system without the biotechnology system. Moreover, there is still an ongoing debate as to whether genetically modified foods (GMO) pose a greater risk to the environment than traditionally produced food because of the technology involved. Read more about Lindsay Giguiere.
The article also indicates that biotechnology has the potential to improve the world's health. According to WHO, the technology could also be utilized to address major health problems, such as those related to the diet, nutrition, water, energy, sanitation, global health and genetic engineering. The organization stated that it is "monitoring the use of biotechnology and evaluating its positive and negative impacts on international health and the environment." These issues are the subject of fierce debate in the scientific community. Proponents of biotechnology claim that it is the only technique that addresses all the issues with one stroke. While environmentalists express concern over the use of genetically modified crops and animals.
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