A nipa hut quitely sits amidst fields of organic rice standing witnessing hardwork and persistence of the farmers in Sitio Canaan, Barangay Crossing, Magallon, Negros Occidental. © Greenpeace/Gigie Cruz-Sy

Only a couple of decades ago, genetically modified organisms (GMO) would have been something out of science fiction. In the not so distant past, we never imagined we would find on our dinner tables strawberries with fish genes, corn with bacterial genes, and soybeans with built-in herbicides. Little did we know that such scenes would turn into reality in a dizzyingly short period of time. But this is now part of today's reality.

In the natural world, organisms develop specific desirable traits through evolution. This is usually a very slow process and driven by natural laws---not by human beings. Typically, an organism develops a color that will camouflage it from potential predators through hundreds or thousands of years of selection and adaptation. And, in the natural world, species never breed with unrelated species.

Greenpeace activists dressed to symbolize the "bul-ul", a traditional Ifugao rice guardian, carried out a protest at the Department of Agriculture in Quezon City. © Greenpeace / Joseph Agcaoili

With the advent of genetic engineering, the natural barriers between species have been broken down. Today, different species can be genetically manipulated to give rise to totally new organisms, presumably with a human-desired trait. Today, through human intervention, a fish can contain genes from a plant, and a plant can be 'shot' with genes from a bacterium. The possibilities for novel organisms are endless with this technology. They are also unpredictable and frightening.

Greenpeace is in the forefront of the campaign to oppose the release of GMOs into the environment. Greenpeace insists that because the technology is very new and imprecise, the potential ill effects on public health and on the environment are still widely unknown. The truth is no one knows for sure how these new man-made creations will affect life on planet Earth. Therefore, because there is still no scientific consensus as to long-term impact, and in accordance with the precautionary principle, it is best that no releases of GMOs into the environment be allowed.

This technology must be approached with great caution and more study! Releasing GMOs into the environment could have lasting effects that we cannot yet even imagine.

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Giving the gift of Time

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Blog entry by Tricia Aquino | December 23, 2018

Think plant-based food is plain and boring? Make your way to Little India Healthy Cuisine for your next holiday gathering and it'll change your mind in one bite! Located at 24F Malingap St., Teachers Village, the restaurant...

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Groups Welcome Assurance Given by BOC for the Re-Export of Korean Garbage by End of...

Press release | December 3, 2018 at 11:35

30 November 2018, Quezon City. The environmental groups EcoWaste Coalition and Greenpeace Southeast Asia - Philippines welcomed the assurance made by the Bureau of Customs (BOC) that the tons of illegally imported garbage from South Korea will...

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Blog entry by Tricia Aquino | November 15, 2018

When Karla Rey was a child, she would spend weekends in her grandmother's backyard, tending to the garden, propagating cuttings, and picking fresh fruits and vegetables to eat. Mangoes, bananas, star apples, guavas, aratilis, makopa,...

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Blog entry by Tricia Aquino | November 13, 2018

What does red taste like? How about green, yellow, and blue?  Certified plant-based cook and published writer Mabi David offers these fanciful questions to think about in her new children's book,  Paano Kumain ng Kulay? ...

Global survey reveals FMCG companies’ contribution to plastic pollution crisis

Press release | October 23, 2018 at 14:23

Jakarta, Indonesia, 23 October 2018 - Fast moving consumer goods (FMCG) corporations are a predominant force behind the throwaway economic model driving the plastic pollution crisis, according to a comprehensive sector survey Greenpeace...

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