• Entry
  • Reader's guide
  • Entries A-Z
  • Subject index

Biotechnology and Ecological Risk

  • By: Ian J. Mauro
  • In: Encyclopedia of Geography
  • Edited by: Barney Warf
  • Subject:General Geography, Earth & Environmental Science

Since the late 1970s, advances in biotechnology have allowed for the unprecedented crossing of genes between species, and over the past decade many of these genetically modified organisms (GMOs) have been released into ecological systems. The environmental release of GMOs has taken place at landscape and test plot scales, predominately involving crop and tree varieties, although livestock and fish species have also been modified and are on the verge of commercialization in some countries. While GMOs mainly offer production benefits, it is largely accepted that biotechnology is still in its infancy and may cause unanticipated ecological risks, which requires further study that may be aided by the holistic discipline of geography.

The terminology regarding biotechnology and risk is controversial and confusing. Industry often claims that biotechnology ...

    • Loading...
    locked icon

    Sign in to access this content

    Get a 30 day FREE TRIAL

    • Watch videos from a variety of sources bringing classroom topics to life
    • Read modern, diverse business cases
    • Explore hundreds of books and reference titles