Mark Lynas' “environmental conversion” (part 4)

Lyman’s sudden reversal is all the more disquieting when he claims it is based on his new understanding of science and these supposed myths:

• I’d assumed that it would increase the use of chemicals. It turned out that pest-resistant cotton and maize needed less insecticide.

Why do we need insecticide at all! But GMO’s do increase the use of chemicals. Is he not aware of Roundup? Organic and biodynamic crops use no pesticides, insecticides, herbicides or fungicides whatsoever and are resistant to disease because their immune systems, which are centred in the soil, are healthy.

• I’d assumed that g.m. benefited only the big companies. It turned out that billions of dollars of benefits were accruing to farmers needing fewer inputs.

Fewer inputs? Farmers benefitting? What planet is he on!? After investing millions on research, the big bio-tech companies have made sure they will get returns on their investments by patenting seeds. How are farmers benefitting from this and when we say farmer, what in fact do we mean…?

• I’d assumed that Terminator Technology was robbing farmers of the right to save seed. It turned out that hybrids did that long ago, and that Terminator never happened.

The Terminator never happened? Again, where does he get this from? Farmers around the world have become legally bound to companies like Monsanto to buy their seed. Merely stating that this is a myth does not make it one. It is not a myth, it is a fact. (There are 434,000 articles on this subject on Google…)

The fact that he also supports nuclear energy because of its comparatively light contribution to CO2 emissions also reveals the nature of a profiteering half-cocked opinion maker who fails to see or even consider the global picture. What is his environmental solution to the increasing problem of storing spent uranium? Not even mentioned. But given there are already hundreds of viable alternatives to large grid scale energy supplies – green energy is not beyond our reach, simply beyond certain greedy economic interests – he’s clearly missed the boat.

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