By Anastasia Gubin
The reasons why scientists, farmers and residents around these monocultures reject them, focuses on the destruction of the environment, pollution and the dramatic increase in water consumption, which causes an imminent drought.
In the vast Pampas biome that occupies large areas of Brazil, Uruguay and Argentina, the gauchos call monoculture tree plantations "green desert, where nothing lives."
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When in 2011, the UPM Forestal company established a transgenic eucalyptus nursery in Uruguay, 12 kilometers from Guichón, promised a 30 percent increase in production, according to the OLCA media, ensuring that to maintain the boilers it would use its fuel as fuel. own wood, but their representatives did not clarify the issue of water and pesticides that would be used.
Today, FuturaGene, owned by the paper and cellulose company Suzano, promises in Brazil through its portal and on YouTube, a 20 percent increase in the production of eucalyptus with transgenics, ensuring that this benefit is a socio-environmental economic benefit .
But the reality is different according to the report by Paolo Giardelli, in the film released by Organizacao e Filmagens in 2012:
• "The eucalyptus tree consumes approximately 30 liters of water per day, causing erosion and salinization of the soil."
It can be concluded that the cloned transgenic eucalyptus will consume 20 to 30 percent more water per day.
• A single [eucalyptus] factory consumes "an immense amount of water per day and emits gases that are harmful to people and the environment."
• There is nothing alive or natural in monoculture plantations. "They produce absolutely nothing that has a connection with nature and its species," according to biologist María Carmen Sastrem Bastos of InGá.
• The biologist stated that in 2012, the transgenic eucalyptus was introduced and that its additional consequences - the already harmful effect of monocultures - is unpredictable.
• As it is impossible to traverse the kilometer-long stretches of trees stuck side by side, animal species disappear because there is no food in those places.
• "Every chemical process is highly residual and this is harmful to nature and eliminates species", according to Serdio Reis, of the World Rainforest Movement.
• Despite attempts to maintain crops around the plantations, in their surroundings, the reality of environmental destruction is evident, in addition to other human activities.
• The transgenic eucalyptus trees, planted side by side, do not produce flowers in the lower part, and they are big problems, "it is a very big risk," said the specialist (see image gallery).
• Herbicides are applied to whole trees, emphasizes Enio Paiva, forestry technician, so that after cutting they do not sprout anymore.
Due to the conflict in Brazil, the World Rainforest Movement highlighted the following risks of transgenic eucalyptus on February 27, in an appeal to the Brazilian government to prevent the official legal release of these products:
• The important sector of the economy of organic honey, free of GMOs would be lost. In this regard, he explained that the scientific studies presented are insufficient. "Brazil's current honey production is more than 40,000 tons per year, and the sector encompasses 500,000 honey producers, mainly small-scale family farmers, and two million hives."
• An alert is declared for the large-scale application of pesticides used on these trees, "and the voracious consumption of water by eucalyptus monocultures in a country that is currently facing one of the most serious water crises."
• The insertion of transgenic eucalyptus trees in this model will not alleviate, and will only worsen the impacts on the environment, biodiversity and indigenous and local communities.
• "The living conditions of the communities surrounded by Suzano operations have been destroyed to the point that they are now fighting to guarantee their food sovereignty and are increasingly at risk of losing their territories."
• The impact on pollinating bees affects all agriculture.
One way that legislative commissions use to approve transgenic plantations is to omit environmental studies that demonstrate the risks, said the director of the Soil Association, Peter Melchett, a couple of weeks ago, referring to the case of the United Kingdom, where a group of MPs seek to release the products by announcing only the economic benefits for entrepreneurial companies.
Malcon Mallison, in the 2011 report on GMOs in South America, explained that “in South America, the first commercially transgenic crops began to be planted on Argentine soil in 1996 using transgenic soybean seeds (Soya RR). Almost simultaneously they were illegally introduced into the State of Rio Grande do Sul in Brazil and from there they went to Paraguay and Bolivia ”.
At the legal level, Mallison stressed that the authorization measures were taken, in general, by the Executive Powers of the governments through supreme decrees or ministerial agreements, with confidentiality clauses in the files, justified for commercial reasons.
The Epoch Times