The best of EcoWatch, right in your inbox. Sign up for our email newsletter!
Kauai Council Overrides Veto to Mandate Disclosure of Genetically Modified Crops
Kauai has a ground-breaking new law that mandates disclosure of pesticide use and the presence of genetically modified crops by agrochemical companies on the Hawaiian island, and establishes buffer zones between these operations and schools, hospitals and residential areas.
Kauai County Council on Saturday voted 5-2 to override a mayoral veto of the bill, which council had approved, 6-1, in October. Overriding the veto required five council votes.
The measure applies to farms that use more than five pounds or 15 gallons of restricted-use pesticides annually. The island hosts 15,000 acres of crop lands that are used by biotech companies and chemical manufacturers to test their products.
The bill mandates:
- Disclosure of what genetically modified crops are being grown on the island
- A 500-foot buffer zone near medical facilities, schools and homes, among other locations
- Notification of the public before spraying
- County assessment of the effects of the sprayed chemicals
- Disclosure of what pesticides/herbicides are being sprayed, location and quantity
- A health and environmental impact study on effects of the pesticides.
Violators could face up to one year in jail or up to $25,000 a day in fines per offense.
In vetoing the bill, the mayor said he agreed with the intent of the bill, but believed it was flawed legally.
GMO Free Kaua’i, which supported the measure, called the final passage of the bill, "a victory for people, health and the environment in the face of incredible pressure from the world’s largest chemical corporations."
“It’s remarkable how hard we’ve had to fight simply for our right to know what pesticides are being sprayed in massive amounts right next to homes and schools," bill supporter Fern Rosenstiel said in a GMO Free Kaua'i media release. "We’ve met every possible obstacle, but we’ve been persistent and stayed grounded in our values of protecting our people and land.”
Visit EcoWatch’s GE FOOD page for more related news on this topic.
EcoWatch Daily Newsletter
By Cathy Cassata
Are you getting your fill of Starbucks' new Almondmilk Honey Flat White, Oatmilk Honey Latte, and Coconutmilk Latte, but wondering just how healthy they are?
1982 American Petroleum Institute Report Warned Oil Workers Faced 'Significant' Risks From Radioactivity
By Sharon Kelly
Back in April last year, the Trump administration's Environmental Protection Agency decided it was "not necessary" to update the rules for toxic waste from oil and gas wells. Torrents of wastewater flow daily from the nation's 1.5 million active oil and gas wells and the agency's own research has warned it may pose risks to the country's drinking water supplies.
The mounting climate emergency may spur the next global financial crisis and the world's central banks are woefully ill equipped to handle the consequences, according to a new book-length report by the Bank for International Settlements (BIS), as S&P Global reported. Located in Basel, Switzerland, the BIS is an umbrella organization for the world's central banks.