Genetic Engineering (GMO land use) has no place in QUALITY primary production
and puts our economy, key markets, environment and health at risk.

Opportunity to make submissions supporting Whangarei District Council & Far North District Council GMO Plan change


Great news!

Opportunity to make submissions supporting Whangarei District Council & Far North District Council GMO Plan change

Whangarei District Council and Far North District Council recently publicly notified their collaborative GMO Plan change to BAN all GMO releases and make any EPA approved outdoor GE experiments/ field trials a Discretionary activity, subject to additional local stringent requirements (that the HSNO Act does NOT require!)  This is in alignment with Auckland Council, who has already begun the process through its proposed Unitary Plan consultation.

Please support our Northern councils innovative work to protect our biosecurity, unique biodiversity, existing non GM primary producers, our economy and the public health from the risks of outdoor use of GMOs.

 

WHANGAREI DISTRICT COUNCIL and FAR NORTH DISTRICT COUNCIL collaborative GMO Plan change

(This is a collaborative GMO Plan change, in alignment with Auckland Council, so please make supportive submissions to both FNDC and WDC).

Deadline: 9 September 2014 but let's start writing submissions now!

Key points for easy submission writing will be provided by GE Free Northland in the next few days...we need thousands of supportive submissions for this innovative Plan change, in the interests of Northland farmers, horticulturists, beekeepers, foresters, gardeners and other ratepayers.

NORTHERN COMMUNITIES WANT STRICTER GE CONTROLS

GE Free Northland Press Release

2 July 2014
NORTHERN COMMUNITIES WANT STRICTER GE CONTROLS

GE FREE Northland welcomes the news that Far North District Council and Whangarei District Council voted unanimously last week to jointly publicly notify the GMO Plan Change to ban all GMO releases and make any EPA approved outdoor GE experiments/ field trials a Discretionary activity (subject to additional local requirements that the Hazardous Substances and New Organisms Act does not require).

"This process is in keeping with the proposed collaborative GMO Plan change with Auckland Council, who has already begun the process through the proposed Auckland Unitary Plan," said Martin Robinson, spokesman for GE Free Northland.

Monsanto sues tiny, rural, farming state of Vermont, USA

Just hours ago, Monsanto, an overseas multinational with a horrendous public health and environmental track record made a chilling decision.

Monsanto and its allies have just announced they're suing the tiny, rural U.S. state of Vermont to stop a new law that simply requires genetically engineered foods to be labeled. In fact, the mere threat of a multi-million dollar lawsuit nearly caused the state to back off the labeling law altogether.

But Vermont is refusing to back down -- and they’re asking for our help. They're getting ready to fight back against Monsanto, and have even created a legal defense fund so people around the world can make donations to help them beat back Monsanto’s lawsuit.

The SumOfUs community is already fighting Monsanto on every front, but we need to show Monsanto now that we won't be intimidated. We won't let Monsanto bully our elected officials into submission.  People worldwide are being asked to help Vermont stand up to Monsanto, and pass comprehensive GE labelling laws in their own countries.


ACTION ALERT from SUM OF US, United States

Vermont is a small, entirely rural state with just 600,000 people. Vermont vs. Monsanto, one of the most powerful corporations in the world, is a classic David and Goliath fight.

But there’s much more at stake here than just whether GMO foods will be labeled in a single U.S. state. Vermont is actually the very first state in the U.S. to require labeling, and dozens of other states have said they will require labeling as well -- but only if Vermont’s law can survive this legal challenge.

High Court Prevents GM Developers Bypassing GM Laws

High Court Prevents GM Developers Bypassing GM Laws

      Media Statement, May 22 2014  Sustainability Council of NZ
 
The High Court has quashed a decision by the Environmental Protection Authority (EPA) that would have allowed developers of genetically modified crops to bypass New Zealand’s GM laws.
 
The Court found the EPA misinterpreted the law when it decided that GMOs from two new breeding techniques could go into New Zealand fields without any formal consultation or assessment of the impacts.  The EPA was also criticised for failing to act cautiously in the face of uncertainty. 
 

GE Free Northland Annual General Meeting (AGM) in Whangarei, Monday 26 May 2014

GE FREE NORTHLAND (in food and environment)
Notice of Annual General Meeting


Date: 26 May 2014   

Time: 7pm


Venue: EcoSolutions 3 Bank St Whangarei


All Welcome


More information: 09 4322155 email: linda.grammer@gmail.com
Thanks for your support and see you there!

GE Free, organic nibbles and tea provided, Naturally :)

Global Development and Environment Institute article "Monsanto meets its Match in the birthplace of Maize"

 

Victory in Vermont, USA- first State to enact Statewide GE food Labelling!

Vermont just handed Monsanto and the biotech industry a massive defeat! Now mandatory GMO labeling will be required in the state of Vermont, USA... and the GMO industry is panicking as they want to continue to sell GE food unlabelled/ invisible to the eye/ consumer

www.naturalnews.com/044870_Vermont_GMO_labeling_consumer_slavery.html

 

www.centerforfoodsafety.org/press-releases/3100/vermont-set-to-be-first-state-to-enact-statewide-ge-food-labeling

 

Vermont Set to be First State to Enact Statewide GE Food Labeling
April 23rd, 2014

Legislature Passes First No Strings Attached Law

Today, the Vermont legislature passed the first no strings attached law to require labeling of genetically engineered (GE) foods. The House voted 114-30 to accept the Senate version of the bill passed last week. It now heads to Governor Shumlin, who is expected to sign the bill. The law would go into effect July 1, 2016.

US corn exports to China drop 85 percent after ban on GMO strains – industry report

http://rt.com/usa/china-gmo-corn-ban-120/

US corn exports to China drop 85 percent after ban on GMO strains – industry report

Published time: April 12, 2014 
AFP Photo / Philippe Huguen

AFP Photo / Philippe Huguen

China’s rejection of shipments of US corn containing traces of unapproved genetically modified maize has caused a significant drop in exports. According to a new report, US traders have lost $427 million in sales.

Overall, China has barred nearly 1.45 million tons of corn shipments since last year, the National Grain and Feed Association (NGFA), an American industry association, said Friday.

RUSSIA WILL NOT IMPORT GMO PRODUCTS- Prime Minister Medvedev

http://rt.com/news/russia-import-gmo-products-621/

 

Russia will not import GMO products - PM Medvedev

Published time: April 06, 2014 00:58
Edited time: April 07, 2014 10:33
RIA Novosti / Maksim Bogodvid

RIA Novosti / Maksim Bogodvid

Russia will not import GMO products, the country’s Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev said, adding that the nation has enough space and resources to produce organic food.

LOCAL REGULATION OF OUTDOOR USE OF GMOs ON THE RISE IN NZ

GE FREE NZ Northland
 

Court decision empowers local body protection against GMO risks

www.organicnz.org.nz/node/819

 

BACKING FOR LOCAL RIGHT OF PROTECTION AGAINST RISKS OF GMOs

http://press.gefree.org.nz/press/20140210.htm

 

10/02/2014

Backing for Local Right of Protection Against Risks of GMOs

Prime MInister Urged to meet Mayor of Hawaii to Learn about GM Ban

 

GE FREE NZ AOTEAROA Press Release

6 December 2013 


Prime Minister Urged to Meet Mayor of Hawaii to Learn About GM Ban

Overwhelming support for local decisions on GM free status- National Poll

 Pure Hawke's Bay is a group of primary producers (conventional, IPM and organic) in Hawke's Bay committed to retaining their existing valuable GE free status, and continued access to key markets and premiums for GM free produce

Overwhelming Support for Local Decisions on GM Free Status: National Poll

Four out of five New Zealanders think councils should be able to keep their districts GM Free using local plans, according to a Colmar Brunton poll.

The poll was commissioned by Pure Hawke’s Bay, a group of premium food producers who are asking councils in the region to secure Hawke’s Bay’s GM free status through local plans.

Earlier this year, the Government announced its intention to change the law to prevent the regions from doing so. But 79% of New Zealanders participating in the national poll said that councils should be able to use the RMA to prohibit GM releases in their territories.

The response shows that the Government is way out of step with New Zealanders, says Bruno Chambers of Pure Hawke’s Bay.

Several councils – including Hastings, Whangarei, Far North and Auckland City – are proposing to use local plans to protect their regions from GMO releases, with strong backing from their communities.

79% want councils to have power over GM crops, Colmar Brunton poll

RADIO NZ programme

79% want councils to have power over GM crops - Colmar Brunton poll

http://www.radionz.co.nz/news/national/229508/79-percent-want-councils-to-have-power-over-gm-crops-poll



A group opposed to genetic modification has released a poll showing almost 80% of respondents want councils to retain the power to create GM-free zones.

The phone survey of 1000 people was commissioned by Pure Hawke's Bay and carried out by Colmar-Brunton.
Under proposed changes to the Resource Management Act, central government rather than councils would have the power to decide where GM crops can be grown.

However, Pure Hawke's Bay says 79% of the people surveyed want decision making powers to stay with the councils.

Spokesperson Bruno Chambers says GM free products command a premium price and the group wants GM-free zones so farmers can grow unmodified crops with less risk of contamination.

The survey has a plus or minus margin of error of 3.1%.

Listen to more from Bruno Chambers on Morning Report

Landmark court case on GE

Precaution vital to prevent GE contamination

 

http://press.gefree.org.nz/press/20131126.htm

 

GE FREE NZ Press Release

26/11/2013

Precaution Vital to Prevent GE Contamination

Comvita adds voice to GE trials caution

Comvita adds voice to GE trials caution

By John Cousins      Bay of Plenty Times

8:30 AM Friday Nov 29, 2013 
  •   www.nzherald.co.nz/bay-of-plenty-times/news/article.cfm?c_id=1503343&objectid=11164655
Cultural consultant Buddy Mikaere is standing for a tougher council stance on genetic engineering. Cultural consultant Buddy Mikaere is standing for a tougher council stance on genetic engineering.

One of the Bay's biggest exporters Comvita has backed moves to single out genetic engineering as deserving a "precautionary approach" by the region's environmental watchdog.

The Paengaroa-based company joined seven others in the Environment Court yesterday to fight a bid by the New Zealand Forest Research Institute (Scion) to stop the the Bay of Plenty Regional Council adopting a cautionary stance toward GE field trials.

Comvita, whose honey exports of $80 million rely on New Zealand's clean green image, has highlighted the huge financial impact if a GE organism was released into the environment.

Scientists, activists, orchardists, organic farmers and Maori culture united to support the council which wants to signal its concern about the risks from genetic modification trials in its regional policy statement.

Scion has challenged the validity of the council singling out genetically modified organisms (GMOs) as warranting a precautionary approach.

But the council stopped short of elevating GMOs to a "matter of significance" which would have had a flow-on effect into its planning documents by the introduction of specific rules.

WAR AGAINST GMO'S EXPECTED TO ESCALATE

letters to editor needed, in response to today's Whangarei Leader GE story

(inflammatory comments from WDC's Clr John Williamson- but he is correct in anticipating that Federated Farmers of NZ and...who knows what nefariou multinational or NZ Crown Research Institute will appeal Whangarei District Council, Far North District Council and Auckland Council's collaborative Plan change to BAN all GMO releases and make EPA approved outdoor GE experiments/ field trials a Discretionary activity

(try and keep it to 250 words, provide full contact details :)

WAR AGAINST GMO's EXPECTED TO ESCALATE       15 October 2013     Whangarei Leader
by Denise Piper

Whangarei District Council- important GE agenda item, Wednesday 9 October 10am Forum North

 


There will be an important GE agenda item at next Wednesdays 9 October 2013 meeting of the
Whangarei District Council "District Living committee"
(Council chambers, Whangarei)

AGENDA (now online, GE documents available in attachment form, upon request)
www.wdc.govt.nz/YourCouncil/Events/Pages/EventDetail.aspx?EventID=320
Whangarei ratepayers and residents- please JOIN US in making a positive presence at council on the day... and ...celebrate the expected win on the day.

All welcome :) (including from other parts of Northland)

Where: WHANGAREI DISTRICT COUNCIL
Forum North, Rust Avenue  (council chambers, upstairs) 

When: 10am -llam

Wear: GE free t-shirts, bring banners or placards celebrating and encouraging WDC's excellent leadership on the GE issue, our council continues to work hard to protect our existing valuable GE free status
(In keeping with the WDC's strong precautionary and prohibitive GE policy in our Long Term Council Community Plan 2012/22...and... in keeping with WDC's unanimous vote to undertake the proposed Plan change.

 

GM stance deepens divisions

"GM stance deepens divisions" 
by Jamie Ball
STRAIGHT FURROW   10 September 2013     (front page)

Federated Farmers of NZ is "clearly out of touch with markets" in their opposition to councils' plans to introduce tighter regulation for genetically modified organisms, says Pure Hawke's Bay (PHB) spokesman Bruno Chambers.

Mr. Chambers said the PHB coalition of regional food producers seeking to improve the region's global reputation for safe, sustainable, high quality food production had proposed securing GM free food producer status through local authority planning, for l0 years.

"We had a meeting with the President, Bruce Wills, who said that Federated Farmers would not stand in the way of the Pure Hawke's Bay initiative, so it surprises me that Federated Farmers are taking the position they have."

"They are basically out of touch with the markets. NZ relies on premium markets- our future is not with low-price commodity markets," he said.

Environment Minister Amy Adams recently announced that hazardous substances and new organisms were comprehensively regulated on a national basis and councils should not use the Resource Management Act (RMA) to set up their own independent regulatory frameworks.

However, like some other regions, the Hawke's Bay coalition believes that the Environmental Protection Authority has no mandate to protect regions, regional rands or regional returns.

Mr. Chambers said it was a pity that the federation's representative on the subject, Wililam Rolleston, was entrenched in an ideological position.

new report: An overview of genetic modification in New Zealand 1973-2013: the first forty years

new report: An overview of genetic modification in New Zealand 1973-2013: the first forty years 

excellent new report/ expose (from the McGuiness Institute in Wellington) of how the NZ government has failed to implement many of the key useful recommendations from the Royal Commission into Genetic Modification
Download this report here:

http://apo.org.au/research/overview-genetic-modification-new-zealand-1973-2013-first-forty-years

An overview of genetic modification in New Zealand 1973-2013: the first forty years
Wendy McGuinness, Renata Mokena-Lodge | McGuinness Institute
29 August, 2013

An overview of genetic modification in New Zealand 1973-2013: the first forty years
29 August 2013

This report argues that strategically, New Zealand is no further ahead on public policy regarding outdoor use of GMOs than it was when the Royal Commission on Genetic Modification reported its findings in 2001.

Govt coalition partners reject RMA proposal

www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=11123339

 

Govt coalition partners reject RMA proposal

By Isaac Davison @Isaac_Davison

Sep 12, 2013  NZ HERALD
National had the support of Act for the bill, which is still being drafted, but needed one more vote to get it over the line. Photo / Getty Images
  
National had the support of Act for the bill, which is still being drafted, but needed one more vote to get it over the line. Photo / Getty Images

Prime Minister John Key has underlined the importance of speeding up building consents to make homes more affordable after the Government's major reforms of the Resource Management Act hit a roadblock.

Mr Key admitted the proposed RMA legislation would need to be changed after National's support parties United Future and the Maori Party made a rare, joint statement of opposition to the reforms.

National had the support of Act for the bill, which is still being drafted, but needed one more vote to get it over the line.

RMA changes strike a rock

http://community.scoop.co.nz/2013/09/maori-party-united-future-rma-changes-strike-a-rock/

 

Māori Party, United Future: RMA changes strike a rock

Press Release – Joint Media Statement

The Mori Party and United Future have decided that they cannot support the governments latest proposed changes to the Resource Management Act, and have written to Environment Minister Amy Adams to outline their concerns.EMBARGOED UNTIL 10:00 am, WEDNESDAY 11 SEPTEMBER 2013
11 September 2013

RMA changes strike a rock

The Māori Party and United Future have decided that they cannot support the government’s latest proposed changes to the Resource Management Act, and have written to Environment Minister Amy Adams to outline their concerns.

“The changes do far more than rebalance the Act to make consenting procedures more efficient. We say the changes to remove emphasis on the ‘maintenance and enhancement of the quality of the environment’ fundamentally rewrite the Act and put a spanner in the works of the legal system, that will take years of litigation to fix up,” said Tariana Turia and Peter Dunne.

“The Resource Management Act was designed to ensure that our use of natural resources is sustainable. Changes to Part Two, which enshrine the driving principles, undermine the whole purpose of the Act,” said Mrs Turia.

Gaping Hole Created by Proposed Change to RMA, Weakening Governance and Democracy

RMA changes threaten fight against GMOs


"RMA changes threaten fight against GMOs"

9 July 2013  Northern Advocate


by Lindy Laird
Northland individuals, groups and authorities who have fought to protect their backyard from GMO threats may yet find they have won a battle but lost the war if the Resource Management Act (RMA) is changed.

Environment Minister Amy Adam came out recently in support of changes to the RMA that could exclude local government having a role in managing GMO (genetically modified organism) risks. Her comments drew fire from the Auckland and Northland-wide Inter-council Working Party on GMO Risk Evaluation and Management. Other groups have said that in threatening to shut down local authorities' efforts to protect their territory, Ms Adams was undermining local democracy.


Inter-council Working Party convenor and Whangarei District Council Futures Planning manager Kerry Grundy said although the Government holds that GMOs were most appropriately controlled under the Hazardous Substances and New Organisms ACT (HSNO), local authorities were still entitled to plan their own cover, ``provided that this action meets the relevant requirements of the Resource Management Act 1991.''


Dr Grundy said should the RMA be amended, more pressure would come on the national regulator, the Environmental Protection Authority, to take into account local government controls on GMOs.

Northland communities want stricter GE controls

GE FREE NORTHLAND in food and environment

Communities want 'stricter' GE controls

hurrah for Lawrence Yule, President of Local Government NZ and Mayor of Hastings  District Council, and Mayor Phil Halse of Whangarei District Council, standing up for democracy...the rights of local existing non GM farmers and other ratepayers

(link to Lois Williams RADIO NZ piece that ran last Friday and on Monday morning- brilliant comments by our Deputy Mayor Phil Halse, telling rookie Minister "for" the Environment Amy Adams to pull her head in and have a wee chat to former Minister Nick Smith!

GE Free Northland putting out a Press Release later today, praising the work of our local councils to create an additional tier of protection against the risks of outdoor use of GMOs (on top of what the HSNO Act requires).

www.radionz.co.nz/news/national/138819/communities-want-%27stricter%27-ge-controls

Communities want 'stricter' GE controls

Updated at 9:59 pm on 28 June 2013

Local Government New Zealand says communities are asking for stricter controls on genetically-engineered material than those set by central government.

Lawrence Yule.

Lawrence Yule.

RNZ

Environment Minister Amy Adams believes the Government's controls on genetically-modified trials and releases are strict enough and said she will change the law to stop councils restricting the growing of genetically-engineered crops and animals in their districts.

Local Government New Zealand president Lawrence Yule said on Friday that councils have taken those steps because many people want a more precautionary approach than central government.

GE CONTROLS NEED STRENGTHENING, NOT SLASHING

GE controls need strengthening, not slashing

The Green Party is calling for Environment Minister Amy Adams to back off from her threats to strip councils of their power to regulate for genetic engineering in their communities.

The New Zealand Herald today reported that the Minister is investigating how to change the law to stop councils from putting in place controls on genetic engineering (GE) in their communities.

“These councils have established that our current regulations don’t adequately cover them or farmers in the event of a GE contamination and they need to step in and provide those protections,” said Green Party GE spokesperson Steffan Browning.

“So what is this Government’s response? Same as usual, change the law to take away local democracy.

“The controls that councils are putting in pace would place the responsibility, accountability, and liability on the person or company growing the crops, which is where it should be.

“This is how nuclear-free New Zealand started, with local councils taking the stand their community wanted them to take and that is a stance that the whole country is very proud of now.

“This Government wants to strip local councils of their ability to regulate what happens in their own regions.

“Without adequate regulation from central government the burden of risk for GE is placed entirely in the wrong place; on GE-free farmers whose crops have been contaminated from neighbouring GE farms, and on the councils themselves.

“It’s entirely rational for a council to ask GE growers to put aside resources to pay for any crop contamination, and to publically notify an application to release GE crops. Farmers have a right to know if their neighbours are going to be using GE, and ratepayers shouldn’t have to pay for contamination or liability costs.

Tougher GE rules likely by Christmas

www.northernadvocate.co.nz/news/tougher-ge-rules-likely-by-christmas/1904336/

Tougher GE rules likely by Christmas

 

 

 

The Far North and Whangarei District Councils have decided to investigate plan changes enabling them to regulate the use of GMOs after massive protest against it. Michael Cunningham

Syndicate content