SCIENCE IN THE NEWS DAILY
Genetically Modified Crops' Results Raise Concern
from the San Francisco Chronicle
Washington -- Biotechnology's promise to feed the world did not anticipate "Trojan corn," "super weeds" and the disappearance of monarch butterflies.
But in the Midwest and South--blanketed by more than 170 million acres of genetically engineered corn, soybeans and cotton--an experiment begun in 1996 with approval of the first commercial genetically modified organisms is producing questionable results.
Those results include vast increases in herbicide use that have created impervious weeds now infesting millions of acres of cropland, while decimating other plants, such as milkweeds that sustain the monarch butterflies. Food manufacturers are worried that a new corn made for ethanol could damage an array of packaged food on supermarket shelves.
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PODCAST & VIDEO: Engineering Around Extreme Events
Extreme events, such as super floods and hurricanes, are becoming more common, so civil engineers are trying to adapt civil infrastructure such as bridges to these unpredictable and sometimes devastating meteorological events. Engineer Ana Barros discusses how engineering can prepare us for extreme weather events, but also how changing climate and population conditions can affect the ability of infrastructure to hold up over time.
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