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The Super Tree

Sophia H.

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I am here from the future where we beat global warming through a bio-engineered tree that takes in more carbon dioxide, and uses less water. Genetic engineering changes the genes of a living thing by adding, removing, or exchanging genes and DNA sequences. The genes used to produce our trees are taken from a variety of species or synthetic DNA.

Scientists used three key ideas to produce these trees. First, in nature, some trees are better at storing carbon dioxide than others. One study lists the, Red Pine, White Pine, Hispaniolan Pine, Scarlet Oak, Red Oak, Virginia Live Oak and Bald Cypress as examples of trees especially good at absorbing and storing CO2. So today’s trees have genes from all of these species.

The second key idea, today’s super trees is that older trees grow faster and take in more carbon dioxide. To make forests take in more carbon, scientists have used genetic engineering to produce plants whose growth is initially sped up so they become older quickly.

The third idea addresses drought resistance. Monsanto is working on a drought resistant line of corn. The corn contains a bacterial gene that enables it to better retain water. Scientists put the same bacterial gene into our trees that Monsanto used so that our trees can live on less water.

Finally, scientists ensured that today’s climate fighting trees would not disrupt local ecosystems. Like navel oranges, today’s climate change fighting trees are seedless. They are reproduced through grafting.