Two distinct paradigms have developed in the European Union (EU) and the United States (US) with respect to the regulation of genetically modified organisms (GMOs), products of modern biotechnology.1 These paradigmatic differences were fully apparent in the complaint the US brought to the World Trade Organization (WTO) in 2004 against EU policies affecting the approval and marketing of genetically modified (GM) crops. Defending its besieged biotechnology policies, the EU made a number of arguments. First, the technologies which produce GMOs are new and GMOs therefore cannot be treated as ―like‖ or ―equivalent to‖ their non-GMO counterparts; second, determining GMOs‘ advantages and risks is `scientifically complex‘ and their long-term consequences–to human, animal and plant life and health, as well as the environment– are ‗relatively unknown‘; and third, the `inherent characteristics‘ and potential risks of GMOs `require them to be subject to rigorous scrutiny‘ to ensure they do not cause harm (European Communities 2004: 5, 1 and 3). By contrast, the US government‘s submission to the WTO articulated an alternate epistemic understanding of GMOs. It stated that the current products of biotechnology are simply `the latest technique‘ –and the most `precise‘ technique–of many centuries of genetically engineering plants in order to improve their productivity and functionality, stressed the benefits of GMOs with no mention of any potential harms, and argued GMOs had a ‗proven safety record‘ (United States 2004: 4, 9). Its own domestic regulations do not view GM foods as novel; indeed, their `substantial equivalence‘ to non-GM foods exempts GM foods from pre-market regulatory approval in the United States.
Besides the divergence of its epistemic framework from that in the US, another feature of the EU GMO paradigm is noteworthy. It, and the regulations based upon it, are controversial not only across the Atlantic but within the European Union itself. Indeed, the contestation that surrounds the regulations based on the EU GMO paradigm, and the unwillingness of some member states to implement and comply with these rules, denote the failure of the EU GMO epistemic framework to acquire the ‗taken for granted‘ quality that marks a Kuhnian/Hall paradigm.
In your first paragraph, describe the topic(s) of the readings and the author(s) main arguments. (250 words)
In the second paragraph, explain what are the implications of the author(s)’s arguments for how environmental science and technology are used to address environmental problems? Your discussion can refer to, but does not have to be limited to or address all of the following: ethical, political, legal, economic and social implications. (250 words)
Click here for further assistance on this assignment