QI am a farmer growing rice in India. I understand rice emits 10-15% of Methane Gas Emission. Though it is relatively a small percentage of Green House Gas at Global level,it is significant at National level. Is it possible develop GMO rice using the tool

I am a farmer growing rice in India. I understand rice emits 10-15% of Methane Gas Emission. Though it is relatively a small percentage of Green House Gas at Global level,it is significant at National level. Is it possible develop GMO rice using the tools of AgriBioTechnology which would prevent rice from transmitting CH4 around the root zone in to the atmosphere through it's aerenchyma cells?

AExpert Answer

There is often more than one solution to a challenge; and similar to corn and other crops, a farmer could most effectively address this specific challenge through a systems approach. For example, there are a number of reports out of China that support farmers changing their agronomic practices to reduce emissions. There seems to be a growing consensus that mid-season drainage decreases the emissions from rice paddy fields as long as nitrogen is applied in appropriate doses. According to calculations, midseason drainage generally tends to be an effective option for mitigating emissions, although 15 to 20 percent of the benefit gained by decreasing methane emission was offset by the increase in N2O emission. (See http://www.ifpri.org/sites/default/files/publications/focus16_03.pdf.) Studies also show that application of manure and blue green algae not only recorded higher yield, but were also found to emit less methane in paddy cultivation than the application of manure alone. http://www.bioforsk.no/ikbViewer/Content/100861/13_TB_Photosynthesis.pdf

 

In addition, scientists believe that there are genetic ways to increase yield through breeding and/or transgenics and that this will also reduce methane output.  There is ongoing research on changing the photosynthesis of rice to be more like corn.  This is expected to increase uptake of CO2 and may reduce methane production (see http://homepage.agron.ntu.edu.tw/~menchi/2010%[email protected]%aa%ab%be%c7%afS%bd%d7/Strategies%20to%20lower%20greenhouse%20gas%20level%20by%20rice.pdf).

 

Monsanto is proud to support research on rice in developing countries.  Monsanto announced in 2009 that we were contributing $10 million to establish Monsanto’s Beachell-Borlaug International Scholars Program, which will identify and support young scientists interested in improving research and production in rice and wheat since these are staple crops in developing countries, providing essential calories to feed billions of people every day. Many of the world’s poorest people rely on the two grains as a key source of food.

Posted on April 11, 2018
Interesting question - that's a good example of how the term "GMO" (genetically modified organism) is too vague to be really useful. In a sense, yes, your genes are modified compared to both of your parents. And you're definitely not genetically identical to your parents (unless you're a yeast, or a starfish, or a willow tree, or some other organism that can reproduce asexually).   But in common usage, the term GMO refers to an organism containing a gene... Read More
Posted on March 1, 2018
I don't see organic foods becoming obsolete in the future, but I could see what qualifies as certified organic changing over time. There is some debate right now about whether or not the meaning of organic is being diluted. For example, look at growing produce hydroponically. There are some who do not want hydroponics to fall under the organic label. They believe organic should be about taking care of the soil as much if not more than growing the crop, and when there's no soil involved... Read More
Posted on March 1, 2018
GMOs are crops - and like any other version of the same crop, where you grow them and how you grow them is far more important than whether they are GMOs. No known system of agriculture can promise that it is sustainable forever; much agricultural research is being devoted to improving the sustainability of agriculture. In this regard, it appears likely that using GM technologies may improve sustainability of a particular crop cultured in a specific manner and place. Other... Read More
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