DNA provides instructions for building living things . Between each generation DNA is mixed up – this is a natural process . Humans can now artificially mix the DNA of plants, using clever procedures in the lab, to make better crops . These are called Genetically Modified Organisms (GMOs) .
More than 181 million hectares of GM crops were planted in 2014 . People worry that they harm the environment and human health [5,6,7], but GM foods are evaluated to make sure that they do neither . In fact, far more checks are done on GM foods than on other new crop types . No effects on human health have been seen [8,9].
But what have GMOs got to do with climate change? Many GMOs can better resist insect pests , so it would be possible to use less pesticide, and in some cases, this is already happening , potentially saving money and wildlife . If GM can allow us to grow more food on less land , then we save other areas for wildlife and planting trees (carbon stores) .
Some GM plants use less fresh water and fertilizer [13,14], stay fresh longer (which reduces waste) , photosynthesise faster  or grow longer roots . Longer roots may be able to store more carbon and for longer . In addition, we may be able to genetically modify crops to grow in unused salty or dry areas and put nutrients back into damaged soil .
GMOs could help us grow food in the more extreme environments  which climate change is creating [18,19,20,21]. As long as they are well regulated to prevent things like outcrossing (breeding with other plants) [8,9,21], we could make use of the potentially huge climate change solutions that they could offer!
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