International business briefs: GM crop officially not safe, EPA’s positive annual report, EIP says EPA report dresses up bad record, Methane to markets agreement, Australia faces climate crisis
A peer-reviewed scientific paper published this week in Biotechnology and Genetic Engineering Reviews debunks the myth that biotech or genetically modified (GM) crops are thoroughly tested, regulated and proven safe. The paper, Safety Testing and Regulation of Genetically Engineered Foods, reveals fundamental flaws in how biotech companies test and the US government regulates GM crops. The paper thus raises serious questions about whether GM foods, which have been on the market since 1994, are in fact safe, as claimed by the biotech industry and US regulators. The scientific paper includes a comprehensive case study of two types of insecticide-producing GM corn (chiefly the MON810 variety of biotech giant Monsanto), showing how flawed testing and regulation permitted these varieties onto world markets despite evidence that they could cause food allergies. The European Union recently approved 17 corn hybrids derived from MON810 over the objections of several European countries.
European business briefs: Environmental funding in Ireland, Soil strategy needed, Spain’s oil spill precautions, Voluntary waste regulations, Dutch dioxin scare
Announcing record funding for his Department, the Minister for the Environment, Heritage and Local Government, Dick Roche TD, stated that the money his Department was investing was "bringing real continued improvement to our quality of life". The Minister was speaking on the occasion of the publication of the estimates, which showed a net estimate of almost ¬2.5 billion for the department. Much of the cash will be spent on combating climate change, improving Ireland's water and wastewater infrastructure, and invested in waste infrastructure and the Environment Fund.
UK business briefs: Environmental taxes, Hazardous waste landfill alternative, Sustainable centre, Diesel clean-up register, Organic growing programme
Increasing tax on gas-guzzling vehicles, including 4x4s, giving cash incentives for motorists to buy greener cars, and helping householders to be more energy efficient, are just some of the measures Friends of the Earth is urging Chancellor Gordon Brown to adopt in his forthcoming pre-Budget statement (2 December) as part of the Government's pledge to tackle climate change. Friends of the Earth is calling on the Chancellor to introduce four new road tax bands - with £50 between each band - to encourage people to buy less-polluting cars, as well as financial incentives for installing renewable energy - such as solar panels - in the home.
Action inspires action. Stay ahead of the curve with sustainability and energy newsletters from edieSubscribe