Are GMOs causing an increase in pesticides?

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Overall, pesticide applications have decreased, largely due to the adoption of insect-resistant crops, particularly in cotton, according to Agricultural Economist Graham Brookes.
 

Reducing pesticide applications saves farmers’ time and money by decreasing the amount of chemicals they need to purchase and the number of times they need to apply them to fields over the course of a growing season. This has translated into documented benefits to the environment, including a reduction in greenhouse gas emissions, equivalent to taking 12.4 million cars off the road for one year.1*

 

Furthermore, Andrew Kniss, associate professor of weed ecology and management at the University of Wyoming, notes that the adoption of the herbicide-tolerant crops available today has allowed farmers to use less toxic herbicides in the field.

 

Sources:
[1] GM Crops: Global Socio-Economic and Environmental Impacts 1996-2013. Retrieved from www.pgeconomics.co.uk
* Information updated to reflect 2013 data.