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Genetic Engineering and the Environment

             Effects of Genetic Engineering on the Environment .
             Genetic engineering is a processes that is used in multiple ways across the globe. Genetic engineering forcibly modifies or changes a plant's genes in a particular way that could not happen naturally. Genes can be inserted into major food crops such as rice, corn, wheat, and potatoes. This changes their genetic make up and causes them to be resistant to diseases and pests. These genes can even cause crops to withstand the freezing temperatures, heat, droughts, and other hostile conditions. Genetic modification also allows scientists to modify a plant so that it has the same traits that other plants have, such as greater leaf area or even a different color. It can also prevent a plant from manifesting certain genes. This process has become a highly controversial topic within the last decade. Gregor Mendel was the first person to ever experiment with this process. He first tried this with a pea plant where he changed the genetic sequence of them. Since then, humans have been genetically modifying plants and animals and trying to rearrange and mix up their genes to fit certain criteria. An example of this process would be inserting a bacteria gene into a tomato's DNA. This helps extend the tomatoes shell life. Genetic engineering was first brought to the United States around 1995. The main reason these genetically modified crops are grown in the United States is to make them able to withstand harmful pesticides and herbicides. Almost 400 million acres of farmland are used to grow these crops. One of the many concerns, is whether or not genetic engineering brings about changes in the environment. Although there are positive aspects of genetic engineering, there are speculations upon whether or not the good outweighs the bad. Although genetic engineering has positive effects on crops, the negative outcomes presented by genetic engineering on the environment outweigh the benefits because of the long-term, harmful consequences of this process.

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