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Minister Alan Kelly must be lobbied on GMO legislation - Lynn Boylan MEP

14 October, 2014 - by Senator Lynn Boylan

Lynn Boylan MEP has commented on the latest draft legislation paper on GMOs presented to the Environmental & Public Health Committee, of which she is a member.

GMOs are a controversial topic across Europe with many countries reluctant to grow them and some countries, such as Austria, issuing outright bans.

Speaking in Brussels, the Sinn Féin MEP, who is her Group’s Spokesperson on this topic said:

"The current proposals put forward by the Commission and the European Council have many flaws. While the Parliament’s position is better than the Commission and Council's position, there is still a major problem that must be highlighted and addressed. All three institutions put a sovereign European state on an equal footing with large corporations and that can include Biotech companies. This sets a very worrying precedent."

"Equal status for a democratically elected government and a multinational corporation is fundamentally wrong and it highlights the negative effect of the Lisbon Treaty where member state laws on topics such as GMOs are now superseded by EU law. If a European state does not want to grow a multinational's GMO crops on its territory, it is simply ludicrous that the state must seek that multinational company's permission not to do so.

"The legislation must protect a sovereign state's right to choose and not provide for a situation where a biotech company can take a country to court for refusing to grow its product.

"I intend to continue campaigning to ensure that this is addressed in the legislation and I will also work to ensure that the legislation provides the strongest safety measures for people and wildlife.

"In November this legislation will be discussed at the European Council by Europe's Ministers of the Environment and I would urge anybody who shares my concern to make your views known to Minister Alan Kelly as soon as possible.” 

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