Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | Video | Questions Of the Day | Search


Sustainability Council jumps to wrong conclusions

Sustainability Council jumps to wrong conclusions

The Sustainability Council is wrong to claim that the government has postponed co-existence work and that this will lead to an officially tolerated presence of genetically modified material, Environment Minister Marian Hobbs said today.

"The reality is that no one is likely to apply to the Environmental Risk Management Authority to grow genetically modified crops commercially in the near future once the moratorium expires on October 29," Marian Hobbs said. "But if they do, strict conditions, including the size of buffer zones, will be imposed by ERMA. This will prevent cross-pollination of GM and non-GM crops."

The Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry (MAF) is currently working, in consultation with ERMA and potentially affected groups, including beekeepers, organic producers and conventional farmers, to put in place practical means to allow coexistence between GM and non-GM agriculture.

"We can develop a generic code of practice based on the current seed certification scheme and on agreements between organic and conventional farmers," Marian Hobbs said. "But until we know which particular crop we are dealing with, if at all, the Environmental Risk Management Authority will use its abilities to set conditions on a case-by-case basis to refine the existing seed certification scheme, and to protect neighbours from possible adverse effects.

"It is the case-by-case consideration of applications that is so important because plants behave differently and require particular controls. For example, pine trees and onions require totally different controls. One size does not fit all."

The Sustainability Council posed three questions in its media release.

"The Council should read the New Organisms and Other Matters Bill and associated policy," Marian Hobbs said. "These contain the answers to their questions. For example the Bill beefs up the liability regime if any loss were incurred."

© Scoop Media

Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Let It Go: MP Pay To Be Frozen

The Government is freezing MP salaries and allowances for a year while developing a fairer formula for future pay increases.

The Remuneration Authority is due to make a decision on MP pay shortly.

“Today Cabinet agreed to freeze MP Pay till July 2019, and to reassess the funding formula used by the Authority to ensure it is fair and in keeping with this Government’s expectations and values,” Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said. More>>


Cop Shop Top-Up: 1800 New Police Through NZ

Police Commissioner Mike Bush has today confirmed further details around the allocation of the 1800 additional officers, following a $298.8 million increase for Police in Budget 2018... “These 1800 officers, alongside 485 support staff, will really enhance our work to keep people safe, and ensure they feel safe,” says Mr Bush. More>>


Human Right Commissions: Concern On Aged Care And Consent

A new report published by the Human Rights Commission raises concerns about the legal and human rights safeguards for an estimated 5000 elderly New Zealanders in secure dementia units and psychogeriatric facilities. More>>


Justice Reform: Andrew Little Interviewed By Corin Dann

“We’ve had thirty years of the auction of more penalties, more crime, more people in prison but it‘s not working, it’s not making us safe.” More>>


Greens AGM: Leadership Stands Firm On Waka Jumping Bill

The Green Party leadership have dug in their heels and will not be reversing any of the decisions they have made in government. Former MPs Jeanette Fitzsimons and Sue Bradford had hoped the caucus might be persuaded this weekend to pull its support from the waka jumping bill. More>>


TOP Still Going, Actually: New Leader For Opportunities Party

New leader Geoff Simmons' aim as the leader of TOP is to take the party into Parliament at the next election where it can advocate and implement progressive reform in areas including fair taxation, cannabis legalisation, affordable housing, and environmental protection. More>>


Gordon Campbell: On Another Reason To Loathe HR Departments (And On The Teachers Strike)

This morning’s news item about Police emergency call centre staff turning up for work while they’re sick – because they’re afraid their sick leave statistics will be used against them, and their jobs put in jeopardy – is not an isolated case... More>>

MPs' Computers To Be Searched: Inquiry Into Leak On Simon Bridges' Expenses

An inquiry has been launched to find out who leaked the National Party's expenses to the media... Parliament's speaker, Trevor Mallard, said a Queen's Counsel would lead the inquiry with the help of an employment lawyer and also someone with forensic IT skills. More>>


Teachers Strike: Nationwide Rallies And Marches

Teachers and principals voted for a full day strike to be held on 15 August to send a strong message to the Government that the current collective agreement offers from the Ministry of Education would not fix the crisis in teaching. More>>





Featured InfoPages