The GE American chestnut is meant to launch us down the slippery slope of tree biotechnology. In the wings, and waiting to follow in that newly forged path are a host of other GE forest tree species, engineered for commercial industrial purposes. Natural forests meanwhile are rapidly declining, even as climate science dictates that protecting and restoring forests is a crucial part of regaining carbon balance. Yet logging, even of the precious remaining old growth forests, continues largely unabated, often subsidized with public funding.
Rachel Smolker and Anne Petermann