In Today’s News:
- GM Cotton and GEAC.
1. GM Cotton and GEAC
Genetically Modified(GM) cotton is being cultivated in India but it has brought only modest benefits and there are discrepancies between yield and the deployment of Bt-Cotton.
(Note: News summary in this article is not important for Civil Service Exam)
Prelims GS – Environment
- Genetically modified (GM) cotton is a plant containing the pesticide gene from the bacteria Bacillus thuringiensis (Bt).
- This Bt Cotton which consists of a pesticide gene protects the plant from bollworm(a pest in cotton farming)and helps in increasing yields and reducing insecticide spraying on the cotton plant.
- Bt. cotton is the only GM crop approved by the Genetic Engineering Appraisal Committee (GEAC) in 2002 for commercial cultivation in India.
- The approval of any new genetically modified crop is given on a case to case basis after thorough scientific evaluation of health and environment safety as per applicable guidelines made under Environment (Protection) Act, 1986 and Rules, 1989.
- The Genetic Engineering Appraisal Committee (GEAC) functions in the Ministry of Environment, Forest, and Climate Change (MoEF&CC).
- As per Rules, 1989, it is responsible for the appraisal of activities involving large scale use of hazardous microorganisms and recombinants in research and industrial production from the environmental angle.
- The committee is also responsible for the appraisal of proposals relating to the release of genetically engineered (GE) organisms and products into the environment including experimental field trials.
The functions of GEAC as prescribed in the Rules 1989 are as follows:
- To appraise activities involving large scale use of hazardous microorganisms and recombinants in research and industrial production from the environmental angle.
- To appraise proposals relating to the release of genetically engineered organisms and products into the environment including experimental field trials.
- The committee or any persons authorized by it has powers to take punitive action under the Environment Protection Act.
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