Science and Engineering Ethics 25 (5):1485-1497 (2019)

Chris MacDonald
Ryerson University
Genetically engineered organisms have been at the center of ethical debates among the public and regulators over their potential risks and benefits to the environment and society. Unlike the currently commercial GE crops that express resistance or tolerance to pesticides or herbicides, a new GE crop produces two bioactive nutrients and docosahexaenoic acid ) that heretofore have largely been produced only in aquatic environments. This represents a novel category of risk to ecosystem functioning. The present paper describes why growing oilseed crops engineered to produce EPA and DHA means introducing into a terrestrial ecosystem a pair of highly bioactive nutrients that are novel to terrestrial ecosystems and why that may have ecological and physiological consequences. More importantly perhaps, this paper argues that discussion of this novel risk represents an opportunity to examine the way the debate over genetically modified crops is being conducted.
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DOI 10.1007/s11948-018-0074-9
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Ethics of Dissent: A Plea for Restraint in the Scientific Debate About the Safety of GM Crops.Payam Moula & Per Sandin - 2015 - Journal of Agricultural and Environmental Ethics 28 (5):903-924.

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