Wednesday, 30 April 2008

Intensive industrial agriculture, reasons why not,-part two.

Email the Commission before May7th GMO vote!

An important vote on GMO's is due to take place on May 7th in Brussels. The agro-chemical industry wants EU permission to grow pesticide-producing maize plants and a GM potato that contains an antibiotic resistant gene.
(For information about GM crops and intensive, industrialized arable agriculture with pesticides, please see my previous post)
Greenpeace International wants EU commissioners to say "No!" when they discuss the applications and vote them. The Greenpeace International website provides more information and the email addresses of all EU commissioners.(Go to 'Greenpeace International' and on the right hand side of the webpage under "things you can do now" follow the link- "Help make Europe GM free.")

Points made by Greenpeace:-

  • "The two maize varieties that will be debated on May 7th produce their own pesticide. According to current practices these crops were only tested for 90 days for health effects whereas pesticides are tested for two years!
  • The GM potato contains a gene that makes cells resistant to antibiotics! If this were to get released into the environment there could be serious problems in treating diseases such as tuberculosis.
  • Recently 37 scientists wrote a letter to the commission pointing out from a scientific point of view the many gaps and uncertainties in relation to GMO's.
  • The majority of European citizens oppose the use of GMO's and this opposition has been consistent for the last ten years.
  • Industry promotes GM crops as potentially feeding the world, however this has not materialized whilst ecologically sound farming models and methods show real potential. Recently even the UN admitted that genetically engineered crops are not a solution for poverty, hunger or climate change.
  • The body responsible for advising the Commission on GMO's, the European Food Safety Agency (EFSA) is not doing its job properly. First of all it has recognized that it lacks the methods for carrying out long term assessment of the health and environmental impacts of GMO's. Secondly it is relying on incomplete data that is submitted by the agro-chemical industry-and it hardly ever checks it properly." (Greenpeace)

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