• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

There have been major technical developments in genetically modified plants. Identify and briefly comment on the ethical, social and/or environmental issues associated with the advances.

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

There have been major technical developments in genetically modified plants. Identify and briefly comment on the ethical, social and/or environmental issues associated with the advances. Technology is about how society uses science. The study of technology developments belongs to the social science, and the social sciences insist on the adaptation of a critical attitude to technical developments. Forcing this on ones attention starts with the assertion that technical factors do not determine how the advances of science are used. Social factors shape both the design and implementation of technology developments. The new technologies usually called 'genetic engineering' or 'genetic modification' (GM) promise to revolutionise medicine and agriculture. An optimistic view is that GM plants will make a great, possibly indispensable, contribution to reducing mass hunger. Yet the development of GM crops has recently caused widespread unease around Europe. The unease comes in varying degrees of intensity. It is also based on a wide range of ethical beliefs. Humans have been modifying plants for thousands of years. Selective breeding and any other techniques have evolved into powerful tools for developing innumerable varieties of cultivated plants. ...read more.

Middle

A consumer who thought GM food unsafe would be unwise but not wicked to eat it. The consumption of GM food would be ethically problematic, but in an indirect fashion, if its production did harm, violated rights, or caused injustice. One major issue has been avoided in the evaluation of GM, namely the ethical status of the natural world itself. GM crops do not raise questions about the rights of plants. They do, however, provoke a reaction that is difficult to place within arguments about welfare, rights and justice. Entities that possess rights usually, although not always, possess the ability to waive their rights and to make choices about how they exercise them. Plants cannot pass that test. At another level, rights are often thought to protect the vital interests of creatures that cannot make choices for themselves: babies and unconscious people have rights even when they cannot make choices. It is a stretch of the imagination to think that plants have vital interests, as distinct from human beings having vital interests in what happens to plants. ...read more.

Conclusion

This would result in less food for birds and other animals further up the food chain. Secondly, a high level of illing would exert strong selection pressure on any resistant insects, so that the pest resistance might quickly become ineffective. This might force farmers to go back to spraying. Thirdly, in built pest resistance might affect non-target species, including susceptible beneficial insects that feed on pest species. The way that the costs and benefits of agricultural technologies fall on the citizens of well-off and poor societies respectively raises questions of justice, as well as difficult issues of how policy makers can steer technological change so that it does good to those who most need it. A considerable amount has been said and written already about both the potential benefits and risks to the environment of GM plants, but we are only beginning to accumulate the data that will enable us to evaluate precisely the pros and cons of these issues. If further research indicates that some particular applications of GM technology pose such risks to the environment that they should not go into commercial production, they should be withdrawn. BSc Computing CF102 Assignment 1 - Ethics Page 1 of 2 ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our GCSE Variation and Inheritance section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related GCSE Variation and Inheritance essays

  1. Genetics Research

    Then they took the egg of an unfertilized egg. They removed the DNA from the egg, and put in the DNA from the male udder cell. They then fused the DNA and egg together with electricity. Then they put it into a Culture with growth promoting protein hormones.

  2. Analysis of Charles Darwin's Origin of the Species

    nest of ants he found "...two bodies of sterile workers in the same nest, differing not only in size, but in their organs of vision, yet connected by some few members in an intermediate condition."(p. 240) To then tie the whole thing together, Darwin defends the concept of an ant being sterile being beneficial to the community.

  1. The Moral and Ethical Issues associated with DNA Technology

    So that they can be manufactured in bulk the cloned genes need to be mounted on a vector, an example of a useful vector is the E-coli bacteria. This has a small circular DNA and is widely used. Once the gene has been isolated and cloned, several modifications will be made before it can be inserted into a plant.

  2. Food Policy at a Crossroads, A World of Plenty or a World of Famine ...

    resist insects, grow at an accelerated rate, require less water and resist disease and chemicals. The isolated DNA, or gene, is then placed into a plant cell. As a result, the plant growing from this modified cell, carries the inserted gene and is "enhanced" to express new traits; however, the plants exhibit traits that are not possible under natural conditions.

  1. What are the possible environmental risks of Genetically Modified Crops? Is it morally permissible ...

    Once the crop is visible selective herbicides have to be used to combat weeds without damaging the crop. Several varieties of soya have been genetically modified to tolerate the herbicides therefore farmers can control the weeds. A third example is feeding the world, the global requirement for food is set to double in the next two generations.

  2. Cloning Human Beings Is Not Ethical.

    Many experts worldwide are very skeptical, because Clonaid would not allow them to take DNA samples. Regardless of whether any of these babies were actually born as claimed, we as American citizens should use this unsettling report constructively by speeding up our personal evaluation of human cloning.

  1. The moral and ethical concerns with the use of genetically modified crops.

    Not all of the public have the view that "people do not want its[the department of environment] food"6, there are also some neutral feelings about GM foods that adopt the 'if you can't beat 'em, join 'em' approach as they realize that they have "probably been eating them for years"7,

  2. Selective Breeding

    of the soil so it can?t be used again. Secondly if you selectively breed a plant you can get a plant with reduced resilience thus the plant actually has fewer yields as more die.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work