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Uncertain Peril: Genetic Engineering and the Future of Seeds

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Uncertain Peril: Genetic Engineering and the Future of Seeds Cover

 

Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

Life on earth is facing unprecedented challenges from global warming, war, and mass extinctions. The plight of seeds is a less visible but no less fundamental threat to our survival. Seeds are at the heart of the planet's life-support systems. Their power to regenerate and adapt are essential to maintaining our food supply and our ability to cope with a changing climate.

In Uncertain Peril, environmental journalist Claire Hope Cummings exposes the stories behind the rise of industrial agriculture and plant biotechnology, the fall of public interest science, and the folly of patenting seeds. She examines how farming communities are coping with declining water, soil, and fossil fuels, as well as with new commercial technologies. Will genetically engineered and "terminator" seeds lead to certain promise, as some have hoped, or are we embarking on a path of uncertain peril? Will the "doomsday vault" under construction in the Arctic, designed to store millions of seeds, save the genetic diversity of the world's agriculture?

To answer these questions and others, Cummings takes readers from the Fertile Crescent in Iraq to the island of Kaua'i in Hawai'i; from Oaxaca, Mexico, to the Mekong Delta in Vietnam. She examines the plight of farmers who have planted transgenic seeds and scientists who have been persecuted for revealing the dangers of modified genes.

At each turn, Cummings looks deeply into the relationship between people and plants. She examines the possibilities for both scarcity and abundance and tells the stories of local communities that are producing food and fuel sustainably and providing for the future. The choices we make about how we feed ourselves now will determine whether or not seeds will continue as a generous source of sustenance and remain the common heritage of all humanity. It comes down to this: whoever controls the future of seeds controls the future of life on earth.

Uncertain Peril is a powerful reminder that what's at stake right now is nothing less than the nature of the future.

Synopsis:

How genetic engineering threatens seeds, and the stories of those working to save this precious environmental resource Seeds are at the heart of the plant systems that provide us with food, energy, medicine, and even the air we breathe. Their power to adapt will be crucial to our ability to cope with a changing climate. In Uncertain Peril, environmental journalist Claire Hope Cummings examines how agriculture has changed dramatically, how corporate control of seeds undermines their biological integrity and natural abundance, and how communities can maintain seeds as the common heritage of all humanity and preserve the regenerative capacity of the earth.

Synopsis:

How genetic engineering threatens seeds, and the stories of those working to save this precious environmental resource
 
Seeds are at the heart of the plant systems that provide us with food, energy, medicine, and even the air we breathe. Their power to adapt will be crucial to our ability to cope with a changing climate. In Uncertain Peril, environmental journalist Claire Hope Cummings examines how agriculture has changed dramatically, how corporate control of seeds undermines their biological integrity and natural abundance, and how communities can maintain seeds as the common heritage of all humanity and preserve the regenerative capacity of the earth.

About the Author

Claire Hope Cummings is an environmental journalist specializing in stories about the environmental, health, and political implications of how we eat. For six years she produced and hosted a popular weekly public radio show on food and farming in Northern California, including a news segment called "Eater's Digest." She regularly reports on agriculture and the environment for public television in San Francisco. Cummings also writes for periodicals, webzines, and news services. She was an environmental lawyer for 20 years, including four years with the United States Department of Agriculture, then practiced environmental and cultural preservation public interest law. She has farmed in California and in Vietnam. She was a 2001 Food and Society Policy Fellow. Cummings lives in a rural area of Marin County, California. This is her first book.

Product Details

ISBN:
9780807085813
Author:
Cummings, Claire Hope
Publisher:
Beacon Press (MA)
Subject:
Agriculture - Agronomy
Subject:
Environmental Conservation & Protection - General
Subject:
Environmental Conservation & Protection
Subject:
Biotechnology
Subject:
Agriculture - Agronomy - Crop Science
Subject:
Transgenic plants -- Risk assessment.
Subject:
Agricultural biotechnology
Subject:
General Nature
Subject:
Biology-General
Edition Description:
Trade Paper
Publication Date:
20090331
Binding:
TRADE PAPER
Grade Level:
General/trade
Language:
English
Pages:
256
Dimensions:
8.5 x 5.5 x .65 in .75 lb

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Related Subjects

Home and Garden » Gardening » Propagation
Science and Mathematics » Agriculture » Crop Science
Science and Mathematics » Biology » General
Science and Mathematics » Biology » Genetics
Science and Mathematics » Environmental Studies » Environment
Science and Mathematics » Environmental Studies » Food and Famine

Uncertain Peril: Genetic Engineering and the Future of Seeds New Trade Paper
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$21.95 In Stock
Product details 256 pages Beacon Press - English 9780807085813 Reviews:
"Synopsis" by , How genetic engineering threatens seeds, and the stories of those working to save this precious environmental resource Seeds are at the heart of the plant systems that provide us with food, energy, medicine, and even the air we breathe. Their power to adapt will be crucial to our ability to cope with a changing climate. In Uncertain Peril, environmental journalist Claire Hope Cummings examines how agriculture has changed dramatically, how corporate control of seeds undermines their biological integrity and natural abundance, and how communities can maintain seeds as the common heritage of all humanity and preserve the regenerative capacity of the earth.
"Synopsis" by ,
How genetic engineering threatens seeds, and the stories of those working to save this precious environmental resource
 
Seeds are at the heart of the plant systems that provide us with food, energy, medicine, and even the air we breathe. Their power to adapt will be crucial to our ability to cope with a changing climate. In Uncertain Peril, environmental journalist Claire Hope Cummings examines how agriculture has changed dramatically, how corporate control of seeds undermines their biological integrity and natural abundance, and how communities can maintain seeds as the common heritage of all humanity and preserve the regenerative capacity of the earth.
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