Posts Tagged ‘august 11’
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this user is a new Matilda supporter. Joe Politico Posted Wednesday, 31 August 11 at 12:28PM
The trouble with GM foods is that the only real test of how safe they are comes when they enter the ecosystem and the foodchain.
Scientists only generally test what they are looking for i.e.
Does it have a lower G.I.What does the starch content look like
and so forth.
They can’t really test for:
What effect will it have in the long term on soil fertility.might it present an long term increased risk of cancer.is it killing off bees.
History shows that what the scientists are looking at, they find answers for. As seen with the introduction of the Cane Toad – it was very effective in controlling the Cane Beetle population. it just has a few side effects…..
CSIRO are, in my opinion, probably much more principled and concerned about safety than Monsanto – who also bought us DDT and Agent Orange, and who prosecute farmers who, through no fault of their own – find their stock contaminated with Monsatos patented gene crop.
The megacorps are also very good at picking up on bits of public research “under licence” – a euphamism for taking public research and coating it in a heap of their own patents to make megabucks whilst paying back a few shillings into the public purse for the privelege.
Whatever the goals and ethics of the CSIRO scientists, the big businesses that use their research will likely be much more gung-ho about it knowing that the odds of them being held to account for anything that goes wrong are very small.
There are some simple solutions to dealing with world hunger – simple but not politically very easy. like wealth redistribution and vegetarianism.
As Malcolm Turnbull might say – GM food needs a risk management approach. When the risk is messing up the ecosystem beyond fixing then very tight regulation is needed.
Feeding cattle meal created from mincing up the offal of other cattle looked like a good idea – because it has all the right nutrients. Cow is – well – made of cow, isn’t it? So canabalism comes up trumps in the scientific food industry.
Then along comes BSE.
Scientists are good at finding the data outcomes they look for, but not much money is going into some vital questions about safety.
The track record of agribusiness suggests Greenpeace are right to be concerned, whether you agree with their methods or not.
alwayslearning Posted Wednesday, 31 August 11 at 1:02PM
Presumably Greenpeace wants it’s article, mentioned above, entitled ‘Australia’s Wheat Scandal: The Biotech Takeover ’ to be taken seriously by both government and the scientific community. Surely these actions undermine their credibility and give reason to question their ability to enter into rational debate?
Correct, we need checks and balances in place to ensure that scientists do not “jump the gun” and we don’t have another cane toad debacle on our hands, as Joe Politico mentions. however it is clear that Greenpeace is not capable of providing these checks and balances.
Imagine if everyone went around destroying and vandalising for what they believe to be a well-intentioned cause. Society would not progress and the world would remain a stagnant, non-progressive and violent place.
shindig Posted Wednesday, 31 August 11 at 1:08PM
oh interesting. I think you’ve got the headline wrong, though. it’s not Greenpeace vs Scientists, it’s Greenpeace vs Corporations.
This is not “science”, it’s “how corporations can make the most amount of money possible by taking over institutions like the CSIRO and getting their GM wheat crops patented and bought by farmers across the country, but dress it up to look like science.”
Science is finding new things out. like research being done on climate change.
GM crop research is not about finding out about an issue. It’s more about working out how to maximise profit for corporations. to take the climate analogy further, GM is to agriculture what something like geo-engineering is for climate. Geo-engineering poses as a set of technologies that purport to help the climate, but really are aimed at generating millions for the companies that own those technologies.
WhyAreThereNeverAnyGoodUsernamesLeft Posted Wednesday, 31 August 11 at 1:25PM
The whole basis of this article is completely flawed. What kind of scientist works on genetically modifying food crops anyway? certainly not any scientist with a speck of environmental conscience.
Who let this pro-Biotech nonesense through? Sorry Myles but you should go and ask News Ltd for a job.
shindig Posted Wednesday, 31 August 11 at 1:54PM
this article spells out the relationship between CSIRO and the multinationals
“an article in the journal Australasian Science written by a former CSIRO senior executive accused the head of CSIRO of subverting the CSIRO’s traditional role of public research in favour of lucrative consulting work for government and the private sector. Research into GM crops, with its promise of intellectual property and revenue streams, is ‘in’ at the CSIRO, he reported; research into organic farming is ‘out’. he described morale among staff as at rock bottom. ”
Madeleine love Posted Wednesday, 31 August 11 at 3:09PM
re David Tribe’s statement, I think that if Greenpeace aimed as claimed they trimmed the GM wheat that was NOT intended for the developing world. it was a wheat altered to have a higher proportion of resistant starch, effectively a dietary fibre that is not as readily digested, with “potential to reduce the incidence and impact of lifestyle diseases including obesity, type II diabetes, bowel cancer and cardiovascular disease.”2006 csiro.au/news/ps1ja.htmlAlso 2011 abc.net.au/rural/nsw/content/2011/07/s3263709.htm
Horrible.Clarity Posted Wednesday, 31 August 11 at 3:23PM
What kind of scientist works on genetically modifying food crops anyway? certainly not any scientist with a speck of environmental conscience.
That is a completley ludicrous statement. I imagine the kinds of scientist who works on genetically modifiying food crops are the kinds of scientist who care about tackling obesity, world hunger, soil salinity, and the over use of pesticide and fertilizers.
This kind of over reaction to GM products is exactly what this article acusses Greenpeace of and so far the commentators have followed suit. Simply saying that this has connections to big “agribuisness” and is therefore evil is not helping anything. how about addressing the valid points made by this article? Primarily that a diverse range of scientists (many with no connection to the CSIRO) all conclude that this is valid research and the fears of Greenpeace are completley unfounded, while the criticisims come from Chefs and ‘Mothers’ with no qualifications to comment on this.
How about the accusation that the GTRO is underpowered? That is a reasonable concern and I would be the first to argue for increasing its powers if someone made a real case for it being warranted.
Madeleine love Posted Wednesday, 31 August 11 at 3:46PM
re genetic engineer Andrew Jacobs statement: “a single gene in the background of a plant is not going to have an effect on the overall quality of the grain in terms of any health concerns,” Jacobs said.
Jacobs is being quoted on a human health issue but I don’t think this is where his expertise lies. I understand his work is in GM product invention.
Perhaps his statement was misunderstood. The whole point of this crop is to silence one gene to change the overall makeup of the grain for the purpose of creating a health effect. this of course, without considering the risks associated with GM crop development.
In a barley crop patented by CSIRO bit.ly/oAqDtUa single nucleotide changein one barley starch genestopped production of one proteinthat resulted in drastic changes in genetic output, bit.ly/py30MVleading to drastic changes in the seed,and consequently in the food.
We would expect to see many changes in the genetic output of CSIRO’s GM wheat, all for the silencing of one gene (even assuming it was the perfect GM transformation – info not av yet)
AnonymousHero Posted Wednesday, 31 August 11 at 3:47PM
“What kind of scientist works on genetically modifying food crops anyway?”
Norman Borlaug for one – look him up on wikipedia, I bet he has saved more people from starvation than you will ever meet. Gustav Nossal is another. What have you ever done for world food security?
“despite the backlash, Greenpeace continues to question the safety of GM wheat and they have plenty of supporters: organic farmers and grassroots organisations, such as Madge and the Truefood Network, for starters.”
Truefood Network is funded by Greenpeace – so of course it supports them. MADGE is a bizare organisation that seems to claim that mothers are experts on biochemistry (are they heart surgeons too MADGE?) and the organics industry has a MASSIVE vested interest in scaring people about GM because it claims to be GM free (but it isn’t).
Madeleine love Posted Wednesday, 31 August 11 at 4:37PM
re Wilson Da Silva’s comments on “anti-science zealots”.
Since when did patented for-profit product invention become Science?
Da Silva’s article, like a number of similar articles, tried to cast the Greenpeace action as ‘anti-science’.
The angle is far-fetched… [prev posted on the topic] “After working to support Climate Science on the massive accumulation of independent studies is it more likely that Greenpeace would suddenly reject another genuine independent science, or is it more likely that Greenpeace would recognise the corporate patent corruption of GM product invention and trade-based regulation and make an effort to display it for us all to see?”
Independent study on commercial GM crops has been restricted by the patent owners such that there are few independent studies on commercial GM crops looking at human safety endpoints. emilywaltz.com/Biotech_crop_research_restrictions_Oct_2009.pd…
WhyAreThereNeverAnyGoodUsernamesLeft Posted Wednesday, 31 August 11 at 6:33PM
@AnonymousHeroThe first genetically engineered organisms were bacteria developed in 1973. The green revolution started in 1940 and was almost over by then. most of Norman Borlaug’s brilliant work was done without GE and he was certainly given his Nobel Prize before GE was even possible (1970).I understand why you might be a fan of the concept of GE as a way of solving the worlds food problems but it has been co-opted as a way of patenting food, which is criminal. anyone working in the field should be aware of that and if they aren’t then fine, but they are unlikely to be running to assist greenpeace in anything. The theme of the article is that Greenpeace have somehow lost the support of those scientists and it is quite clear that they would never have had it anyway.
this user is a new Matilda supporter. libelula Posted Wednesday, 31 August 11 at 8:34PM
The Green revolution did not help feed the hungry. These days, it is usually recognized that it was RESPONSIBLE for much of the food security problems we are seeing today. GM foods are just an extension of the Green revolution – the progressive takeover of control of food production by mega-agribusinesses.
Remember, no matter how miraculously good a GM variety is, it won’t feed you if you can’t pay for it, or the fertilizers / chemicals you need to grow it. do the scientists doing this work really think Monsanto and their ilk are developing and patenting all these crops so that they can give them away? Don’t insult our intelligence by saying you are doing this to feed the hungry.
WhyAreThereNeverAnyGoodUsernamesLeft Posted Wednesday, 31 August 11 at 9:34PM
@libelula Nicely put!
this user is a new Matilda supporter. GB Posted Wednesday, 31 August 11 at 10:21PM
“to shut down a scientific trial by effectively destroying the laboratory it is conducted in is deplorable [and] undemocratic.”
Shutting down an unsafe engineering trial can be entirely sensible. nothing CSIRO has said has indicated that they are testing for any of the problems that transgenic crops have already demonstrated. The first commenter here is on the money. The fact that they are scientifically studying the starch levels tells us nothing about the safety of the research.
CSIRO has unfortunately traded away its brand and moral high ground – they are slightly more trustworthy than TEPCO, but only just.
Greenpeace is often wrong, but the fact that they have pissed off the people developing this product does not mean they are wrong here.
At the risk of edging close to Godwin’s Law: there was a lot of good science being done in nuclear research in Australia. The Marilinga tests were still wrong.
WhyAreThereNeverAnyGoodUsernamesLeft Posted Thursday, 01 September 11 at 5:59AM
@Annonymous hero (Part 2)Gustav Nossal was an immunologist which doesn’t have anything to do with GE either? Interestingly (according to wikipedia) he was forced to leave Germany when Hitler rose to power so this thread may already have edged very close to Godwin’s law.I guess you are relying on people not bothering to check what you say which seems to me a very strange way to act.Sorry for overposting folks.
alwayslearning Posted Thursday, 01 September 11 at 9:06AM
I think the point of this article is missed, and that is that Greenpeace’s message to the community has been lost by the method they employed. Performing acts like this will only earn them a reputation for being a bunch of vandals and holigans, not a group to be taken seriously.
Imagine if the situation had been reversed and a bunch of climate-change deniers had gone around and smashed up research being done for some form of renewable energy. Surely their actions would not be justified because they are passionate about the cause, or because they don’t support the funding mechanisms behind the research, or because they could point to some expert slamming the research?
I think that if you have a serious message to send to the people of Australia respect our intellegence – present us with the facts and let us make our own decisions. Then, if your cause is truely justified you can mobilise the people and take action using appropriate mechanisms. Irreversible action in the name of the “common good” shouldn’t be done as a publicity stunt, to generate interest/awareness in an issue.
Greg.Revell Posted Thursday, 01 September 11 at 9:58AM
There’s a difference between “science” and “corporate science”. GM proponents like to ride on the coat tails of the good name of science while hiding GM’s true corporate pedigree. They like to portray GM research as being gentlemen scientists all working on life’s big problems for the betterment of humanity. That good name of science is being eroded by corporate interests driven by the profit motive. Are all scientists involved in GM research Dr. Evil? no, of course not, but they are unwittingly playing their part in diminishing science’s rightful place as a powerful force in society by eroding public confidence in that institution.
Its also very telling that the premise of this article is between scientists and environmentalists. I haven’t seen any “outrage” in any media at Greenpeace’s actions by civil society and community groups – only by pro-GM advocates whose collective throats must be hoarse from all the yelling to be heard above the silence from the broader community.
Those selective pro-GM voices are increasingly becoming irrelevent, being drowned out by the growing chorus of a new, environmentally sensitive and ecologically sustainable food future in which GM will play no part.
Examinator Posted Thursday, 01 September 11 at 11:32AM
It seems to me that this issues is focusing on the symptoms rather than the cause.Firstly it is scientifically/ logically naive to declare outright that human manipulation of genes is intrinsically good or bad.Reality is that gene manipulation is essentially what evolution is all about. likewise man has been selectively breeding it’s food since domestication of animals and growing food.The logical difference it that we’ve been doing it with imprecise bulk hit and miss techniques. sure we may get say a sheep with extra long coat but it comes with an uncontrolled, anticipated list of other less desirable results too.Current techniques are dealing with a much narrower arguably more predictable of probabilities.I’d like the anti GM people to tell me who has a dog that isn’t a wolf. and to prove to me that their favoured breed hasn’t got introduced undesirable genetic traits due to breeding to some fashionable standard.i.e. toy poodles, bull dogs, caviller spaniels et alSo in truth the problem is what we are doing with GM not GM per se.
Enter the feral Capitalism’s agenda. e.g. Monsanto et al aren’t about feeding the starving world nor are the GM drug corps about curing diseases…..they are about maximising profit.this can be done by several well worn techniques.
Dominating a market via vertical marketing (controlling all aspects from seed to table). Monsanto et sec sell the seed that allows to use more Roundup… they and other ‘life science’ conglomerates (sic) are restricting choice to those products that make them money on the seed *and* more Roundup (the patent has expired). in effect also excluding cheaper brands of same constituency products… Again this has nothing to do with feeding the 3rd world merely an aggressive (counter productive usage of competition and capital) defence. it is their ultimate goal to become gatekeepers to food thus endless profit potential…..pity about the poor.in order to make more profit sooner they tend towards rushing the science and or bullying those lease able to push back.
In the case of the Drug Corps they’re not interested in curing say malaria, arguably the biggest killer in the third world behind wars and undernourishment. The need for the product is from those least able to afford it (3rd world)instead they prospect ( pharm) native plant resources for genetic compounds then buy the rights from Botanic gardens to reduce their costs for such wonders as appetite suppression pills for the profligate (obese) westerners, the comparatively rich. Yes that means us.
From those few actual (provable) the real problem is what we *do* with the technology and who abuses the control of it.
In reality much of the genetic mods are geared to make money e.g. roundup ready, longer shelf life, cosmetics etc. to enhance marketing to and for the rich ….over fed spoilt us.
Generally speaking CSIRO’s research is about improving yields and resistance to conditions….ultimately the problem will be what is done with the technology….not the science or the effort of the scientists involved.
IMHO Greenpeace have lost the plot and my support on this one….It’s the corporations to blame not CSIRO or the science per se.
Mr Crapulent Posted Thursday, 01 September 11 at 12:02PM
when science goes corporate there nothing much else to do except hit their pockets hard. well done Greenpeace. GM is a scam.
Horrible.Clarity Posted Thursday, 01 September 11 at 12:17PM
There are two seperate arguments being made by the anti-GM crowd and they are being conflated: 1) That GM organisms are unsafe and should not be bred in the field as they will get into our food supply with unknown effects. 2) That GM research is being sponsored/controlled/ran by large multinational agribuisness concerns and is inherently tainted.
These are seperate issues and the primary one that Greenpeace pushes is the one of safety; for instance the concerned mother that took part in this protest
“As far as I’m concerned, my family’s health is just too important. GM wheat is not safe, and if the government can’t protect the safety of my family, then I will.”
However destroying this trial prevents scientists from gathering exactly the sort of evidence that would tell us what potential effects of these GM organism would have when used as food. it is an act of intellectual cowardice to destroy the very experiment that would prove whether the arguments you are making are true or false.
As for the claim that
“There’s a difference between “science” and “corporate science”.
that is simply a nonsense statement. Science has no inherent value, it is a method of investigation, a process not an object. it has no moral standing whatsoever and the notion that anything sponsored by powerful corporate interests in inherently wrong is ridiculous. is medicine developed by Pfizer ‘bad’ because of their shady buisness practices? no, its not, it saves lives, something I take to be a good thing. Of course corporate governance could be better and the state of patent law that allows the registration of genetic products as a method or practice is ludicrous, but that in no way taints all science that may one day be the intellectual property of a large company as evil.
Greg.Revell Posted Thursday, 01 September 11 at 12:47PM
Sorry Horrible.Clarity, the statement that:
“Science … (has) has no moral standing whatsoever and the notion that anything sponsored by powerful corporate interests in inherently wrong is ridiculous”
is itself, ridiculous. Of course, not everything corporates produce is “inherently wrong” but nor does it mean that everything they do is benevolent so to suggest that somehow scientists are individuals who sit on some morally inert plane of existence, devoid of values, politics and belief systems is clearly a nonsense. you have to separate the discipline of science (rational and logically underpinned by observation, theory and proof) from its practitioners (inherently human and influenced by societal values, politics and financial influence).
Think of the endless episodes in scientific history where individuals were persecuted for suggesting that (for example) the sun revolved around the earth, that smoking causes lung cancer, that humans evolved from primates. all were persecuted by using the “science is all-knowing” argument of the day.
An editorial in Scientific American reveals the level to which biotech companies control GM research
all of which you’ll note, discusses the undue corporate influence distinct from the discipline of science itself. for the record I have a BSc in mathematics/physics
Mr Crapulent Posted Thursday, 01 September 11 at 1:20PM
@ Horible.Clarity: The two arguments you mention are linked. GM products may or may not be safe but if they are produced for profit by unaccountable industry there is no way to know until it is too late. Also, there is no credible argument for the risk – there are more crop varieties than we know what to do with and science concerned with human well-being (which obviously includes the health of our planet) would exhaust safe possibilities before spending vast amounts on high risk products.
Science won’t provide useful answers if they aren’t asking the right questions. If we let profit drive our science it will continue to be weighted towards the patentable and profitable (bugger the long term consequences). this is short sighted, undemocratic and, if history is any guide, disastrous.
Horrible.Clarity Posted Thursday, 01 September 11 at 1:39PM
I completley agree with you that
“you have to separate the discipline of science (rational and logically underpinned by observation, theory and proof) from its practitioners (inherently human and influenced by societal values, politics and financial influence). ”
That is the point I am trying to make; the practice of science is neither good nor bad, whether being done at home in a garage or in the biggest corporate laboratories on the planet. What is done with such work can be, but as far as I can tell the Greenpeace argument on this front is simply to yell “Monsanto” as loudly as possible.
Just because you can draw connections to companies does not mean that this work is tainted. furthermore, as far as I am aware, the CSIRO owns the products of its research and typically enters into arrangements with corporate partners to commercialise them, the profits of which go back into funding CSIRO research.
I don’t see anyone complaining about CSIRO research into long lasting contact lenses being co-opted by corporate interests, yet its exactly the same sort of arangement that gets that product distributed.
I’ve also been looking through Greenpeace’s ‘Australian Wheat Scandal’ Brochure and it is needlesly alarmist in many places. for instance:
This removes the capacity for any external review of the testing of potentially unstable, experimental GM products on Australians.
Yet the OGTR Risk managment plan for the trial clearly states that any human trial must be approved by a human research ethics committee, the same sort of board that approves trials for new medications. These boards are not rubber stamp committee’s and it is not a trivial task get them to approve studies.
The Greenpeace position on this issue is overly dramatic and hypocritical, they insist these products aren’t safe or that there is no evidence to show that there is and then they actively destroy the research that would answer the question.
this user is a new Matilda supporter. grevillea Posted Thursday, 01 September 11 at 1:59PM
“That is a completley ludicrous statement. I imagine the kinds of scientist who works on genetically modifiying food crops are the kinds of scientist who care about tackling obesity, world hunger, soil salinity, and the over use of pesticide and fertilizers.”
We do not need GM to tackle world hunger. There is enough food, more than enough, to feed all the people in the world. The problem is distribution and access and they are hampered by political, economic and military factors.
LukeMR Posted Thursday, 01 September 11 at 2:33PM
Lively discussions around GM are necessary. however, people should avoid making definitive factual claims on a topic so complex.
Of course, everyone is entitle to their opinion, including Greenpeace. The question is: can Greenpeace justify their act of vandalism? in this instance, I don’t believe so.
Protest is great for black and white issues – no war, stop the whaling etc. anyone who thinks that GM is just as black & white is pushing the boundaries of credibility.
Eric Posted Thursday, 01 September 11 at 3:23PM
Personally, I have no problem with the concept of GMOs in themselves, as long as they are tested properly.
Does Greenpeace believe all GMOs are inherently unsafe? Would Greenpeace like us to stop using Taq polymerase as well? or do they only oppose the genetic modification of multicellular organisms? how about single celled eukaryotes like yeast? is it OK to genetically modify bacteria? Phages? how do people feel about using GMOs to produce enzymes for biomedical or forensic applications? Where do they think we should draw the line?
this user is a new Matilda supporter. cmardon Posted Thursday, 01 September 11 at 3:37PM
chrismIt is not widely known that the insertion of foreign genes through GM technology is accompanied by other genes (known as marker genes) which are used to isolate the GM organism using specific properties of the marker gene (such as antibiotic resistance) to select the particular organisms containing the foreign genes. I used to work with GM bacteria and yeasts to produce specific proteins for pharmaceutical research, but the organisms are destroyed in the process of isolating the specific proteins. with GM crops, the seeds, or in this case the wheat grains can contain the marker genes, and transfer antibiotic resistance to us when the crop is eaten.
The OGTR Technical Summary for these CSIRO experiments shows that the GM wheat lines also contain the nptII gene which provides resistance to antibiotics such as kanamycin. The GM barley line contains the hpt gene which provides resistance to the antibiotic hygromycin B. Many common bacteria, including human gut bacteria, can become antibiotic resistant when the gene is transferred to them from the GM crop when it is ingested.
I have never heard of the OGTR pointing this out when it approves field experiments of GM crops, which become uncontrolled as soon as the plant pollens are carried away by the wind, or when the GM crop is eaten. The narrow Terms of Reference of the OGTR prevent it from straying into politically difficult areas such as these.
Greg.Revell Posted Thursday, 01 September 11 at 4:56PM
I’ve seen this debate become heated and unnecessarily so, in the past. I sense that this forum is making some ground towards mutual understanding. I’m hopeful.
The GM debate is so heated because at its heart its a battle of values.
There are many here that support GM research who feel that when GM-free voices attack GM , they feel its an attack on them and their integrity and in defending themselves they unfairly tag GM-free advocates as scientifically ignorant morons. I can assure you that I have no truck with science nor do I make a personal value judgement about those who do GM research. and I can assure you, neither do many of my GM-free colleagues. Their truck is with the corporatisation of genetic material for financial gain and the health impacts those products present to society in the pursuit of that wealth.
For the other side, they have a deep affinity with the intrinsic value of food and the natural world and so vociferously defend its integrity, especially when those corporate institutions manipulating its fundamental building blocks then assume exclusive ownership through the patenting system for what has long been the intellectual commons of mankind for mellenia. some GM-free advocates unfairly ascribe “guilt by association” on individual scientists because they are in the same industry as the much maligned Monsanto et al. this is clearly is not logical and is further perceived as a personal attack on the scientists thereby exacerbating misunderstanding.
So this is not a debate between science vs. environmentalism – thats too simple and convenient. Its a clash of values with the “holistic integrity of food and nature” on one side and the “progress through reductionist science and technology” on the other.
Will we ever see a resolution?
Examinator Posted Friday, 02 September 11 at 12:28PM
Realfood et al.The dominant focus isn’t about values any more than Anti AGW is it’s almost purely emotional and self interest one. in this case to protagonists have reversed roles.I repeat GM isn’t scientifically intrinsically good or bad it is like a gun…merely a tool. The problem is with either is the intentions of the human at the trigger end.
On one side you have the extremist green/lefty who rabbits on about the purity of nature et al ; on the other side you have the so called conservative equally spuriously blabbering on about the market having “rights” and expedience ad nauseum.What is missing from both arguments is reality.
Yes there is enough food produced today to feed the worlds people sufficient calories etc . however two glaring points seem to be missedThe first that statement is an aggregate and ignores delivery,culture, wars access, capitalism, human nature, culture and a myriad of other *real world obstructions and/or conditions.(conditions= impassible road blocks, obstructions = solvable speed bumps)
On the other side- history is littered with the consequences of over exploitation, irresponsible development, pollution, profligate life styles, wars and even the excesses of profit. e.g. The Mayans, original Icelanders, Bopal, Chernobyl, BP Gulf oil spill….. (that back today english.aljazeera.net/news/americas/2011/09/201191163236563698.ht…),even over clearing and over cropping, over stocking in Australia, especially in marginal land. amongst them I include the Corporate greed induced disasters As if we needed proof motherjones.com/mojo/2011/09/25-giant-corporations-paid-their-ceo…NB the chemical corp listed and trace BopalAnd Monsanto et al predatory marketing are legendaryguardian.co.uk/science/2011/sep/01/psychopath-workplace-jobs-…
Clearly this leads us to the inevitable we need or will need GM to survive (good) and GM as it’s practised dominated by corps is (Bad).CSIRO develops GM food usually based for good reasons (disease resitant) sadly due to lack of govt support it often does so in partnership with the corps (not so good)Solution CSIRO should revert to it’s old non commercial partenership objectiveand be funded by us…the good results could then be licensed where it benefit the most people . not just the avaricious minority.
Bob.Phelps Posted Monday, 05 September 11 at 5:00PM
Industry and government hise the real hazards and costs of risky new technologies. Whipper snipping GM wheat destined for our bread and pasta was a last resort, in the public interest, when CSIRO hid GM information as secret, ‘commercial-in-confidence’.
When CSIRO is praised for its earlier history of public good research, its present commercial links and conflicts of interest must be disclosed. CSIRO’s genetically manipulated (GM) wheat trial that mums whipper snipped is grown under contract to the French GM giant Limagrain and CSIRO’s contacts with GM companies such as Bayer, Monsanto, Syngenta, Aventis, Novartis, Novo Nordisk and Pfizer were also hidden. Bayer, for example, pays for CSIRO’s ‘educational’ kits which push GM crops to our kids without mentioning the risks, hazards and costs of GM organisms.
The federal government’s National Enabling Technologies Strategy (NETS) promotes GM and nano-technology products with $38.2 million of our money! The West Australian Government recently allowed Monsanto to acquire 19.9% of WA public plant breeder, InterGrain, for $10.5 million. Intergrain produces 40% of Australia’s wheat seed, bred over decades by Australian farmers and governments. this deal would allow Monsanto to insert its GM traits into the best Australian wheat and claim ownership of those GM varieties.
The Office of the Victorian Premier and the Queensland Government are both members of the Biotechnology Industry Organisation (BIO), a Washington DC-based organisation that promotes its corporate members’ GM products and interests around the world, with the support of US government diplomats (see Wikileaks). The Victorian Government aspires to be the largest hub of GM research and development in the Asia Pacific region and, for example, signed a $50 million public private partnership (PPP) with Dow AgroSciences at the BIO trade show in Atlanta Georgia, in 2009. The Queensland trade commissioner to the USA makes a priority of biotechnology promotion.
Further development of the National Food Plan and the Blewett review of food labelling also continue behind closed doors, away from the public’s gaze. When will our governments stop secretly selling Australia out to foreign interests and deliver on their promises of real public participation in policy development?
DrGideonPolya Posted Tuesday, 06 September 11 at 11:50AM
The destruction of the CSIRO experimental plot was an outrageous attack on scientific research for the benefit of Humanity. no doubt Greenpeace and those responsible will be brought to account by the authorities.
Greenpeace also needs to be brought to account for its appalling betrayal of science-informed climate activists by its support of the retrograde Gillard Labor Carbon Tax-ETS-Ignore Agriculture (CTETSIA) plan that will entrench climate change inaction in climate criminal Australia.
Greenpeace and similar environmental groups that support the disastrous Gillard Labor Carbon Tax-ETS proposal are a themselves great threat to the environment by supporting Labor’s spin-based, dishonest proposal that on Treasury and other rmodelling will simply INCREASE Australia’s Domestic and Exported greenhouse gas (GHG) pollution (for the awful Truth see “Oz Labor’s Carbon Tax-ETS & gas for coal plan means INCREASED GHG pollution”, Bellaciao, 27 August: bellaciao.org/en/spip.php?article21140 ).
It is not just Greenpeace and like climate-lite organizations that have betrayed Australia and the Planet. thus the Neocon American and Zionist Imperialist (NAZI)-infested, pro-Labor ABC has an appalling record of lying by omission and commission in relation to Labor’s climate change inaction as well as about many other critically important matters from who did 9-11 (see “Experts: US did 9-11”: https://sites.google.com/site/expertsusdid911/home ) to 9 million war-related Muslim deaths SO FAR in the Australia-complicit US War on Terror (see Muslim Holocaust, Muslim Genocide”: https://sites.google.com/site/muslimholocaustmuslimgenocide/ ).
In short, the Australian Labor Government has proposed a highly controversial Carbon Price-based plan to “tackle climate change” and create what it calls a “clean energy future” by an implied DECREASE in greenhouse gas (GHG) pollution. unfortunately Australian Government-endorsed Treasury modeling report “Strong growth, low pollution” shows that under the Carbon Price plan Australia’s domestic greenhouse gas (GHG) pollution will INCREASE to 621 Mt CO2-e (million tones of CO2-equivalent) in 2020, 25% BIGGER than that in 2000.
However searches of the taxpayer-funded Australian ABC’s own search engine for “621 million” and “Strong growth, low pollution” yield 1 and 0 reports, respectively, whereas a search of the ABC for the Government’s propaganda document and dishonest mantra “Clean energy future” yields 348 items. further, the ABC shamelessly reports immense climate falsehoods such as “gas is clean” (gas is dirty, it is not clean and indeed because of systemic leakage can be DIRTIER than coal GHG-wise) (for the awful Truth see “MSM lying: Australian ABC lying by omission and commission over climate crisis”, Bellaciao, 4 September 2011: bellaciao.org/en/spip.php?article21154 ).
Peace is the only way but Silence kills and Silence is complicity.