The Herald reports:
Environment Minister Amy Adams has confirmed she will block councils from setting their own rules on genetically modified organisms, saying that central Government’s controls on GM trials and releases were strict enough.
The minister was challenged in Parliament yesterday after the Heraldrevealed she was investigating attempts by North Island councils to introduce higher standards on GMOs in their planning documents.
Ms Adams said in the House that she was concerned that councils were trying to go against central Government’s rules on new organisms.
“Local councils are local councils – they operate under the national framework. There has never been the ability for them to rewrite national rules that they don’t like.
“And if councils have concerns about the way GM regulation in New Zealand works, they should raise those with the [Environment Protection Agency] and attempt to address the legislation on a national basis. They should not set up their own independent states…”
Excellent. This will stop the anti-science nutters from bullying Councils into bans. New Zealand had a Royal Commission of inquiry into GM. It was demanded by the Greens and others. They said that GM should not be banned in NZ, but allowed under strict conditions.
It is worth recalling that in over 20 years of genetically modified crops and food, there has never been any documented ill effects from it. Wikipedia states:
- the American Association for the Advancement of Science has stated “Foods containing ingredients from genetically modified (GM) crops pose no greater risk than the same foods made from crops modified by conventional plant breeding techniques.
- The American Medical Association, the National Academies of Sciences and the Royal Society of Medicine have stated that no adverse health effects on the human population related to GM food have been reported and/or substantiated in peer-reviewed literature to date.