Changing Nature's Course: The Ethical Challenge of Biotechnology

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Gerhold K. Becker, James Porter Buchanan
Hong Kong University Press, 1996 - 208 Seiten
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Biotechnology marks a new scientific revolution which will change our lives dramatically. It holds the promise of generating almost limitless resources to meet the needs of a rapidly growing world population in its fight against hunger, diseases and environmental disasters. Expectations range from designer foods to biodegradable pesticides, virus-resistant plants, and bacteria which consume oil spills; from gene therapy to eugenics.
Yet, critics paint a different, nightmarish picture. Biotechnology, they argue, will change the course of nature once and for all. It will jeopardize evolution and add incalculable, self-made risks to the fragile conditions of life on this planet. Nature will cease to be 'natural' but will be re-created in our own image.
By providing solid information about a new and fascinating scientific development and by exploring the complexity of its ethical dilemmas, the book offers orientation in a difficult terrain and stimulates the search for answers adequate to the severity of the challenge. What becomes obvious from the articles collected here is that the issues arising from biotechnology are significant and thus are in need of wide-ranging public debate. It is hoped that this volume will contribute to that debate.

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