[X] CLOSEMAIN MENU

  • Archives

  • Categories

    • ALS (2)
    • Announcements (586)
    • Antibiotic Resistance (10)
    • Aquaculture (23)
    • Aquatic Organisms (8)
    • Beneficials (30)
    • Biodiversity (45)
    • Biofuels (6)
    • Biological Control (15)
    • Biomonitoring (28)
    • Birds (4)
    • btomsfiolone (1)
    • Bug Bombs (1)
    • Canada (10)
    • Cannabis (22)
    • Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) (5)
    • Children (25)
    • Children/Schools (219)
    • Climate Change (36)
    • Clover (1)
    • contamination (80)
    • Environmental Justice (116)
    • Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) (131)
    • Events (82)
    • Farm Bill (10)
    • Farmworkers (126)
    • Fertilizer (3)
    • Forestry (2)
    • Fracking (3)
    • Fungicides (3)
    • Goats (1)
    • Golf (11)
    • Health care (32)
    • Holidays (24)
    • Household Use (1)
    • Integrated and Organic Pest Management (58)
    • International (296)
    • Invasive Species (29)
    • Label Claims (47)
    • Lawns/Landscapes (194)
    • Litigation (294)
    • Microbiata (5)
    • Microbiome (6)
    • Nanosilver (1)
    • Nanotechnology (53)
    • National Politics (386)
    • Pesticide Drift (134)
    • Pesticide Efficacy (1)
    • Pesticide Regulation (690)
    • Pesticide Residues (150)
    • Pets (18)
    • Preemption (19)
    • Resistance (81)
    • Rodenticide (22)
    • Synthetic Pyrethroids (2)
    • Take Action (434)
    • Toxic Waste (1)
    • Uncategorized (479)
    • Wildlife/Endangered Sp. (336)
    • Wood Preservatives (22)
  • Most Viewed Posts

Daily News Blog

11
Mar

Take Action: Call for Moratorium on the Release of RNAi Pesticides that Manipulate Genes

(Beyond Pesticides, March 11, 2019)  We must stop the expanded commercialization of genetically engineered pesticides. The failure of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to fully evaluate environmental impacts of gene-manipulating pesticides raises serious concerns in light of the agency’s ongoing failure to predict ecological effects of pesticides, such as the dramatic decline of pollinators.

With the release of a 2019 peer-reviewed scientific article, Environmental Fate of RNA Interference Pesticides: Adsorption and Degradation of Double-Stranded RNA Molecules in Agricultural Soils, on the potential impact on soil and non-target microorganisms in soil, the study’s co-author, Kimberly Parker, PhD, remarked, “The ecological risk assessment of these emerging pesticides necessitates an understanding of the fate of dsRNA [double stranded RNA] molecules in receiving environments, among which agricultural soils are most important.”

This technology, given that it is systemic to the plant and leaves traces in the soil, can cause widespread indiscriminate poisoning—as has been seen with bees, butterflies, birds, and the larger catastrophic decline of insect populations.

Tell your members of Congress that the ecological effects of RNAi gene-manipulating pesticides raise serious questions—they have not been fully studied by EPA and, until they are, the agency should issue a moratorium on their release.

Previously, technical hurdles in measuring dsRNA had stymied scientists’ ability to quantify the genetic material and its degradation products in soil, but these investigators are now able to “tag” the molecule so it can be followed through a series of simulated soil systems representative of those in the “real” world. The work of these researchers marks the beginning of understanding the ecological risks of these emerging dsRNA pesticides.

The dsRNA pesticides work by impeding the expression of essential proteins in target pest insects via a cellular mechanism called RNA interference (RNAi). In RNAi, the messenger RNA of the target organism (pest) is adversely affected and it is left either stunted or dead.

In the biochemical genetic engineering (GE) sector, “gene silencing” technology is engineered into plants so that they can, functionally, produce their own pesticides. EPA quietly registered Monsanto’s (now Dow’s) first product using this genetic engineering technology in the summer of 2017 and it is expected to be on the market in 2019 or 2020.

For decades, the silver bullet strategy to controlling the corn rootworm has eluded companies advancing approaches that do not take into account crop and soil management systems known to prevent insect problems, such as those utilized by organic farmers. Previous attempts that incorporate Bt (Bacillus thuringiensis, a bacterium that produces a toxin that kills some pests and non-pests) have been met with insect resistance over time. With the gene-manipulating pesticide, when the rootworm ingests the dsRNA in the corn plant’s tissue—grown from GE corn seeds called SmartStax Pro—a gene in the insect that is essential for rootworm survival gets turned off.

Too many mistakes have been made with the proliferation of pesticides and herbicide-tolerant genetically engineered crops, resulting in harm to consumers, farmers, and other organisms. With this new study, it is clear that we know less than we should to allow the marketing of a new pesticidal plant. Given that we have the tools to grow food productively and profitably without it, there is no need for EPA to move ahead without complete understanding of serious potential hazards.

Tell your members of Congress that the ecological effects of RNAi gene-manipulating pesticides raise serious questions—they have not been fully studied by EPA and, until they are, the agency should issue a moratorium on their release.

——

Dear U.S. Representative
Dear U.S. Senators

I respectfully request that you write to Administrator Andrew Wheeler of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), requesting that he issue a moratorium on the expanded commercialization of genetically engineered RNAi pesticides that manipulate genes.The failure of EPA to fully evaluate the environmental impacts of gene-manipulating pesticides raises serious concerns in light of the agency’s past failure to predict ecological effects of pesticides, such as the dramatic decline of pollinators. With the release of a 2019 peer-reviewed scientific article, Environmental Fate of RNA Interference Pesticides: Adsorption and Degradation of Double-Stranded RNA Molecules in Agricultural Soils, on the potential impact of RNAi pesticides on soil and non-target microorganisms in soil, the study’s co-author, Kimberly Parker, PhD, remarked, “The ecological risk assessment of these emerging pesticides necessitates an understanding of the fate of dsRNA [double stranded RNA] molecules in receiving environments, among which agricultural soils are most important.”

This technology is systemic to the plant and leaves traces in the soil and can cause widespread indiscriminate poisoning—as has been seen with bees, butterflies, birds, and the larger catastrophic decline of insect populations.

In the biochemical genetic engineering (GE) sector, “gene silencing” technology is engineered into plants so that they can, functionally, produce their own pesticides. EPA) quietly registered Monsanto’s (now Dow’s) first product using this genetic engineering technology in the summer of 2017 and is expected to be on the market in 2019 or 2020.

For decades, the silver bullet strategy to controlling the corn rootworm has eluded companies advancing approaches that do not take into account crop and soil management systems known to prevent insect problems, such as those utilized by organic farmers. Previous attempts that incorporate Bt (Bacillus thuringiensis, a bacterium that produces a toxin that kills some pests and non-pests) have been met with insect resistance over time. With the gene-manipulating pesticide, when the rootworm ingests the dsRNA in the corn plant’s tissue—grown from GE corn seeds called SmartStax Pro—a gene in the insect that is essential for rootworm survival gets turned off.

Too many mistakes have been made with the proliferation of pesticides and herbicide-tolerant genetically engineered crops that have harmed consumers, farmers, and other organisms. With this new study, it is clear that we know less than we should to allow the marketing of a new pesticidal plant. Given that we have the tools to grow food productively and profitably without it, there is no need for EPA to move ahead without complete understanding of serious potential hazards..

Please ask the EPA Administrator to stop the marketing of RNAi gene-manipulating pesticides.

Thank you.
Sincerely,

Share

One Response to “Take Action: Call for Moratorium on the Release of RNAi Pesticides that Manipulate Genes”

  1. 1
    craig clark Says:

    Too many mistakes have been made with the proliferation of pesticides and herbicide-tolerant genetically engineered crops that have harmed consumers, farmers, and other organisms. With this new study, it is clear that we know less than we should to allow the marketing of a new pesticidal plant. Given that we have the tools to grow food productively and profitably without it, there is no need for EPA to move ahead without complete understanding of serious potential hazards..

    Please ask the EPA Administrator to stop the marketing of RNAi gene-manipulating pesticides.

Leave a Reply

  • Archives

  • Categories

    • ALS (2)
    • Announcements (586)
    • Antibiotic Resistance (10)
    • Aquaculture (23)
    • Aquatic Organisms (8)
    • Beneficials (30)
    • Biodiversity (45)
    • Biofuels (6)
    • Biological Control (15)
    • Biomonitoring (28)
    • Birds (4)
    • btomsfiolone (1)
    • Bug Bombs (1)
    • Canada (10)
    • Cannabis (22)
    • Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) (5)
    • Children (25)
    • Children/Schools (219)
    • Climate Change (36)
    • Clover (1)
    • contamination (80)
    • Environmental Justice (116)
    • Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) (131)
    • Events (82)
    • Farm Bill (10)
    • Farmworkers (126)
    • Fertilizer (3)
    • Forestry (2)
    • Fracking (3)
    • Fungicides (3)
    • Goats (1)
    • Golf (11)
    • Health care (32)
    • Holidays (24)
    • Household Use (1)
    • Integrated and Organic Pest Management (58)
    • International (296)
    • Invasive Species (29)
    • Label Claims (47)
    • Lawns/Landscapes (194)
    • Litigation (294)
    • Microbiata (5)
    • Microbiome (6)
    • Nanosilver (1)
    • Nanotechnology (53)
    • National Politics (386)
    • Pesticide Drift (134)
    • Pesticide Efficacy (1)
    • Pesticide Regulation (690)
    • Pesticide Residues (150)
    • Pets (18)
    • Preemption (19)
    • Resistance (81)
    • Rodenticide (22)
    • Synthetic Pyrethroids (2)
    • Take Action (434)
    • Toxic Waste (1)
    • Uncategorized (479)
    • Wildlife/Endangered Sp. (336)
    • Wood Preservatives (22)
  • Most Viewed Posts