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26.11.2007 |

Victoria’s (Australia) Labor MPs fight to keep GM ban

STATE Labor MPs have expressed ”grave fears” that lifting the Brumby Government’s controversial ban on genetically modified crops would harm the environment and economy, as well as damage the state’s green image. Newly elected MP Martin Foley has joined four caucus colleagues from across Labor’s factions in calling for the ban on genetically modified canola crops to remain. The group have all written to a scientific panel chaired by Sir Gustav Nossal, which has handed its report on the economic impact of removing the ban to Premier John Brumby.

26.11.2007 |

Scottish government supports ban of GM crops in Europe

THE SCOTTISH government will this week make an unprecedented intervention in Brussels to try to help ban genetically modified (GM) crops throughout Europe. The environment minister, Michael Russell, is planning to back a controversial bid by the European environment commissioner, Stavros Dimas, to block applications by three multinational companies to grow GM maize.

26.11.2007 |

German Minister for Agriculture urges suspension of GE crop approvals

Germany’s agriculture minister urged the European Union on Monday to suspend its approval procedure for new biotech crops and seeds, demanding governments undertake a wide-scale review of how genetically modified products can be used in Europe. ”This (system) should be stopped and we should check: can the procedures stay as they are,” Horst Seehofer said before EU farm ministers talks. He said that the current system, which has been criticized by several EU nations, is ”highly unsatisfactory.”

23.11.2007 |

EU wins WTO extension to end GMO bans

The European Union has won an extension until until Jan. 11 to comply with the World Trade Organisation (WTO) ruling from last November. The case which pitted the EU against the United States and other GM crop producing countries over its bans on GMO imports found some national bans as well as a general moratorium on GM approvals illegal under WTO rules.

23.11.2007 |

EU officials propose ban on genetically modified corn seeds

European Union environment officials have determined that two kinds of genetically modified corn could harm butterflies, modify food chains and disturb life in rivers and streams, and they have proposed a ban on the sale of the seeds, which are made by Pioneer Hi-Bred, Dow Agrosciences and Syngenta. The preliminary decisions, seen by the International Herald Tribune, are circulating within the European Commission, the EU executive, which has the final say. Some officials there are skeptical about a ban that would upset the powerful biotechnology industry and could exacerbate tensions with important EU trading partners like the United States.

18.11.2007 |

EU considers 'pause for thought' on GMOs

"Here we have one member state, Austria, wanting to opt for one particular position and some other member states feel that this position should be respected, independently of that country's particular opinion about GMOs or GM food," he added, saying that majority of member states are against (187 votes) the Commission proposal to order the ban to be lifted. "The Commission proposal still prevails against the explicit will of one member state and that is something that has to give us a pause for thought".

16.11.2007 |

Establishment of ”GMO free Macedonia” network

On the 1st of November on the initiative of Eco-sense from Skopje and Vila zora from Veles the ”GMO free Macedonia” network of NGOs was established in Veles. The initial meeting took place in Veles, because Veles is the first GMO free zone in Macedonia. Representatives from five NGOs from different municipalities and one foundation were the founders of the Network. The mission of the network is to fight against GMOs through education, exchange of experiences, lobbying, promotion and development of organic farming and declaring new GMO free zones.

13.11.2007 |

Three million people vote to make Italy GM-free

More than 3 million Italians have signed a petition calling for Italy to ban all genetically modified foods. Campaigners collected signatures at marketplaces and food fairs across the country over the last few months and hope the government will respond by banning all imports and cultivation of GMOs.

26.10.2007 |

EU environment chief opposes GE maizes Bt-11 and 1507

The European Union’s environment chief is proposing that two types of genetically modified (GMO) maize not be authorized for cultivation in the bloc, setting up a clash within the 27-member EU executive body. The maize types in question are Syngenta’s Bt-11 and the 1507 maize developed jointly by Pioneer Hi-Bred International, a subsidiary of DuPont Co, and Dow AgroSciences unit Mycogen Seeds, according to documents seen by Reuters on Thursday. But the other members of the European Commission oppose the position of Environment Commissioner Stavros Dimas, sources familiar with the situation said, implying the rejection may not take effect. One EU source said all 26 other members of the EU executive body were against Dimas’ proposal.

26.10.2007 |

France suspends planting of GMO crops until early 2008

French President Nicolas Sarkozy said on Thursday he would suspend the planting of genetically modified (GMO) pest-resistant crops until the results of an appraisal of the issue later this year or early in 2008. Unveiling the country’s new environment policy, Sarkozy said no GMO crops would be planted in France until the government had received the results of an evaluation by a new authority on GMOs set to be launched later this year. ”I don’t want to be in contradiction with EU laws, but I have to make a choice. In line of the precautionary principle, I wish that the commercial cultivation of genetically modified pesticide GMOs be suspended,” he said.

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