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What Are GMOs?

Genetically modified organisms (GMOs) are organisms that have been modified in a laboratory in order to produce a specific result. For example, many types of food sources, especially corn and soybean crops, are genetically modified in order to withstand herbicides and insects. This method stems from the concept of selective breeding and dates back to at least 8000 BCE, although genetically altering DNA didn't happen until 1973.

Austrian monk Gregor Mendel is credited with identifying the founding principles of genetics when he crossbred two pea breeds in 1866. In 1922, hybrid corn made its commercial debut, while plant breeders discovered how to alter DNA with radiation and chemicals in 1940. After 1973, the FDA approved insulin in 1982 as the first genetically engineered product for human use. However, genetically modified food didn't get FDA approval until 1994, when a GMO tomato became the first to go commercial. While on the surface it appears that GMOs are 100 percent positive, they have been surrounded by controversy for decades.

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Miles of unused pipe, prepared for the proposed Keystone XL pipeline, sit in a lot on October 14, 2014 outside Gascoyne, North Dakota.

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What Is the Keystone Pipeline?

The Keystone pipeline is an existing structure that carries oil from Alberta, Canada, down to Cushing, Oklahoma. The major controversy surrounds a proposed 1,200-mile extension, or shortcut, between Alberta and Nebraska. Dubbed the Keystone XL pipeline, this additional route would connect into the existing Keystone pipeline in Nebraska, which extends onward to Texas. It's worth noting that the proposed shortcut shouldn't be confused with an already existing Keystone XL extension between Oklahoma and Texas, called the Gulf Coast pipeline, which has been operating since 2014.

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A good backup generator can help you keep your home running smoothly, even in the event of a major power outage. And, when you choose a solar generator, you can power your home using clean, renewable energy from the sun. By contrast, gas and diesel generators burn fossil fuels, and are extremely loud and spew harmful emissions into the atmosphere. Here are the best solar power generators available today that can provide a cleaner alternative for home generators.

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This picture taken on February 11, 2021 shows a view of Dragon's blood (Dracaena cinnabari) trees at the top of Dixam mountain in the Yemeni Island of Socotra, a site of global importance for biodiversity conservation, located in the northwestern Indian Ocean some 200 kilometers south of the Yemeni mainland. AFP / Getty Images

What Is Biodiversity?

Polar bears, honeybees, mango trees and coral reefs are all examples of the countless animal and insect species, plant life and ecosystems that comprise the planet's vast biodiversity. Every living organism has a role to play in an intricate web of connectedness, no matter the size, and without them, there would be no life on Earth. Removing just one from the chain can send significant ripple effects throughout the system, even if those effects aren't immediately felt. More crucially, every species lost increases the extinction risk to another connected species.

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Paul Souders / Stone / Getty Images

What Is Climate Change? Is It Different From Global Warming?

Climate change is actually not a new phenomenon. Scientists have been studying the connection between human activity and the effect on the climate since the 1800s, although it took until the 1950s to find evidence suggesting a link.

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