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Central Government Over-riding Locals on Genetic Engineering

Alarm at Central Government Over-riding Locals on Genetic Engineering

Everyone who has opposed the introduction of Genetically Modified Organisms (GMOs) into their districts needs to be alarmed at the way central Government is moving to over-ride local council regulations about this matter, says Kelvin Davis, Labour MP for Te Tai Tokerau.

Mr Davis says the Ministry for Primary Industries has inserted a clause (Cl. 6.4) into its proposal for a National Environment Standard on Plantation Forestry which specifically includes a provision permitting afforestation using genetically modified tree stock where it has been approved by the Environmental Protection Authority under Hazardous Substances legislation.

He says this proposal will loosen restrictions on genetically modified pine trees and force councils to remove preventive wording about GMO trees from their policies and plan changes.

Auckland Council, Whangarei District Council, Far North District Council and Northland Regional Council are among those that have used the Resource Management Act to put restrictions on the release of GMOs, in addition to those provided under the Hazardous Substances and New Organisms (HSNO) Act.

Kelvin Davis was speaking at a public meeting in Whangarei on Friday evening where he outlined the proposal and said that under this new environmental Standard local councils will lose the right to use their Resource Management Act powers to restrict the planting of GE trees.

Submissions on this matter need to be at the Ministry for Primary Industries by 5pm on Tuesday 11 August 2015.

Email to NES-PFConsultation@mpi.govt.nz or

Post to : Stuart Miller, Spatial, Forestry & Land Management
Ministry for Primary Industries
P O Box 2526, WELLINGTON 6140

ENDS


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