Genetically Modified crops banned in Northern Ireland

Jonny By Jonny, 21st Sep 2015 | Follow this author | RSS Feed | Short URL
Posted in Wikinut>News>Environment

Northern Ireland ban for GM foods announced by Environment Minister

Environment news

NORTHERN Ireland's Minister for the Environment, Mark H Durkan, has banned growing and cultivating genetically modified (GM) crops in any part of the country.

Mr. Durkan made the announcement today (21st September) in a ministerial press release. The ban follows on from a European Union (EU) decision to allow countries to opt out of having approved GM crops.

In his press release the minister is quoted as saying: “I remain unconvinced of the advantages of GM crops, and I consider it prudent to prohibit their cultivation here for the foreseeable future.

“The pattern of land use here and the relatively small size of many agricultural holdings creates potential difficulties if we were to seek to keep GM and non-GM crops separate. I consider that the costs of doing so could potentially be significant and, in many cases, totally impractical.

“Further, we are rightly proud of our natural environment and rich biodiversity. We are perceived internationally to have a clean and green image. I am concerned that the growing of GM crops, which I acknowledge is controversial, could potentially damage that image.”

Under EU rules, GM crops must be formally authorised before they can be cultivated in the EU geographical area. This is part of an amendment to the EU Directive 2001/18/EC, which came into force earlier this year.

The move was immediately welcomed by the Green Party of Northern Ireland, which issued a Tweet saying: "its prudent until further evaluation of environmental impact".


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Leading commentator on Northern Ireland hard rock and heavy metal, professional journalist and full-time PR professional with award-winning in-house team. Author of several short stories

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