According to Natural News, a new record has been set on the island of Kaua’i, where the county council passed measure 2491, which places unprecedented new restrictions on toxic agricultural chemicals frequently used in conjunction with GMOs.
Few people realize that Kaua’i is ground zero for chemical experimentation in agriculture. The island hosts 15,000 acres of crop land which are experimentally exploited by biotech companies and chemical manufacturers. As a result, Hawaiians who live on Kaua’i are exposed to a toxic cocktail of synthetic chemicals on a routine basis.
The bill passed by a vote of six to one, with councilman Mel Rapozo siding with the biotech industry and voting no. Hawaii Governor Abercrombie appears to be set against the bill and tried to block its passage.
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According to the Huffington Post, DuPont, Syngenta and Agrigenetics Inc. (an affiliate of Dow AgroSciences) has filed a federal lawsuit arguing against Measure 2491, which is intended to set buffer zones between schools and fields sprayed with pesticide, for instance, and requires companies to disclose when and where they are spraying their poisonous concoctions, as well as report genetically modified crops.
As it currently stands in Kaua’i, chemical companies have very few restrictions on where they are allowed to plant GM crops and how often they are allowed to spray undisclosed chemicals on fields. Because of this, many areas of the island have become toxic hotbeds, with local residents reporting allergies, neurological damage and other major afflictions stemming from exposure to GMOs and crop chemicals, one of the many issues that stands to be addressed by Measure 2491.
Dupont, Syngenta and Agrigentics Inc. filed the lawsuit in federal court, claiming that the Kaua’i law is unconstitutional.
The law requires large agricultural companies to disclose pesticide use, report genetically engineered crops and create buffer zones between pesticide-sprayed fields and public areas like schools, hospitals and homes.
“The ordinance is invalid,” Paul Minehart, a spokesman for Syngenta, said. “It arbitrarily targets our industry with burdensome and baseless restrictions on farming operations by attempting to regulate activities over which counties in Hawaii have no jurisdiction. These activities are already regulated by governmental agencies under state and federal laws.”
The three companies collectively lease 11,500 acres on the island of Kaua’i for test farms and research facilities. They grow a mix of biotech seed crops, including corn, soybeans, canola and rice, according to the lawsuit. The temperate climate of Kaua’i gives the companies “the invaluable opportunity to triple or quadruple the pace of development of GM crops” and is “crucial” to the companies’ success.
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