Più Culture per Goccia

STANFORD – Le Nazioni Unite hanno definito la siccità il "più costoso disastro naturale del mondo," sia sul piano finanziario, dato che impone un costo annuale di  6-8 miliardi di dollari, che in termini di vite umane; dal 1900, ha colpito due miliardi di persone, portando a oltre 11 milioni di morti. Ciò è dovuto al fatto che gran parte del mondo è vulnerabile; le zone attualmente colpite sono l'Australia, l’Africa sub-sahariana, l’Asia meridionale, il Nord ed il Sud America ed il Medio Oriente.

Dato che l'agricoltura rappresenta il 70% del consumo di acqua , in media, a livello mondiale, sembra logico che questo settore debba essere al centro delle misure di conservazione idrica. E, in effetti, esiste una tecnologia collaudata che potrebbe aiutare sensibilmente a ridurre l'impatto della siccità: l’ingegneria genetica (IG).

A volte chiamata "modificazione genetica," l’IG consente ai selezionatori di sementi di far fare alle colture esistenti nuove attività - come ridurre il consumo di acqua. Anche se la ricerca e lo sviluppo sono ostacolati dalla resistenza da parte degli attivisti e da un’eccessiva regolamentazione del governo, colture modificate geneticamente resistenti alla siccità stanno emergendo da diversi processi di sviluppo in molte parti del mondo.

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