Green Revolution and GMOs

Natalia Freire

Green Revolution

The green revolution took place in India along with the Bengal Famine in 1943. The causes of the Bengal Famine in India were crop faliures in 1942 combined with continues exports of rice from Bengal to other regions of India and the British empire. The results of the Bengal Famine were that at least 3 million people dies from starvation and malnutrition. This was a partly man made disaster. Agricultural production was not keeping pace with the growth of population. The three basic elements of the Green Revolution is 1) continued expansion to farming areas, The expansion of cultivable land was a important part for the Green Revolution, it continued with the quantitative expansion of farmlands. 2) Double-cropping existing farmland, it was said that there had to be two monsoons per year. One monsoon was natural and the other was artificial. The artificial monsoons came in the form of huge irrigation facilities. Dams were built to arrest large volumes of natural monsoon water which were recently being wasted. 3) Using seeds with improved genetics, this was a scientific aspect of the Green revolution. It developed new strains of high yield value seeds, which was mostly wheat, rice, millet, and corn. Even though the Green Revolution was a tragic era in the 1900s there were several positive aspects. Such as wheat production nearly double in a 5 year period. India went from 12.3 million tons of wheat to 20 million tons, this made India very successful in cereal production. The Green Revolution was able to contribute to the overall economic growth of India, by increasing the incomes of farmers (who were able to afford tractors and other modern technology), the use of electrical energy, and consumer goods. This increased the pace and volume of trade and commerce. The Political results were that India transformed itself from a starving nation to a nation of exporting food. India earned admiration in the comity of nation, specifically in the third world. The Green Revolution was also one factor that made Mrs. Indira Gandhi and the Indian National Congress a very powerful political force in India. Along with all the results there were also limitations. There was more inequality for the farmers, and the new technology requires a large amount of investment which can only be afforded by the big farmers. Most people who weren't as wealthy was the farmers didn't receive the same benefits.


GMO positive and negative results


1) improved standard of living for millions of people worldwide

- 75% rice in Asia

- 80% wheat in third world countries

- 70% corn worldwide

2) contributed to better nutrition by raising incomes and reducing prices

3) people were preventing from consuming calories and more diversified diet

4) Plants were genetically modified to reduce susceptibility to disease which can reduce modified food

5) provided many job opportunities for people


1) Increased the use of pesticides which were necessary to limit the high levels of pest damage

2) Affected both agriculture biodiversity and wild biodiversity.

3)Increased farmers cost of production

4) rate of which production increased in the early years of HYVs could not continue indefinitely. (production increase)

5) Irrigation projects have created significant problems of salinization, waterlogging, and lowering of water tables in certain areas.