Some environmentalists are calling for a moratorium on growing genetically altered trees in orchards and forests. The Great Lakes Radio Consortium’s Lester Graham reports:
Some environmentalists are calling for a moratorium on growing genetically altered trees in
orchards and forests. The Great Lakes Radio Consortium’s Lester Graham reports:
Genetically modified crops have been in the fields for a number of years. Now, genetically
altered trees are being introduced. Fruit trees with genes spliced in to protect them from pests or
disease are becoming more common. And some forest trees are being genetically altered to make
them easier to process for paper.
Jim Diamond is with the Sierra Club. He says if these genetic traits are transferred into the wild,
it could mean biological contamination…
“When you put corporate-patented hacked genetic code out into the out-of-doors where it can
travel around, that genetic code can get into other related species and the way in which they can
interact and change nature is not understood at all.”
Orchards and paper companies say use of the genetically modified trees is safe. In some cases,
genetically modified trees have prevented the loss of entire fruit industries… and might be used
to restore some valuable trees back to the forests.
For the Great Lakes Radio Consortium, this is Lester Graham.