Building Future-Pigs: Less Phosphorus, Fewer Dead Zones

A genetically engineered pig recently approved for limited production in Canada makes urine and feces that contain up to 65 percent less phosphorous, officials have announced. That could be good news for lakes, rivers, and ocean deltas, where phosphorous from animal waste can play a role in causing algal blooms.

These outbursts of algae rapidly deplete the water’s oxygen, creating vast dead zones for fish and other aquatic life. (Related: “World’s Largest Dead Zone Suffocating Sea.”)

Dubbed Enviropig, the genetically altered animal cleared a major hurdle last month, when the government-run Environment Canada approved the animal for production in controlled research settings. Read more in National Geographic.

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