Scientists call for more access to biotech crop data

April 25th, 2008 - 4:01 pm ICT by admin  

Washington, April 25 (IANS) Researchers are seeking access to maps of locations where biotech crops are grown so they can figure out its implications on wildlife, water quality and on pest and beneficial insects. “Since 1996, more than a billion acres have been planted with biotech crops in the US,” said Michelle Marvier of the Santa Clara University, California. “We don’t really know what are the pros and cons of this important new agricultural technology.”

“People on both sides of the debate about genetically engineered crops have been making a lot of claims,” said Marvier, an associate professor of biology and environmental studies.

“One side has been saying that biotech crops reduce insecticide use, reduce tillage and therefore the erosion of top soil. People on the other side say that biotech crops could hurt native species.”

The scientists’ call was published as a Policy Forum in Friday issue of Science.

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