- Associated Press - Friday, October 3, 2014

WAILEA, Hawaii (AP) - A moratorium on genetically modified crops is impractical, incumbent Maui County Mayor Alan Arakawa said.

A proposed moratorium would make it illegal to cultivate, grow or test genetically modified crops in the county until companies complete environmental and public health studies to show their practices are safe.

If approved in the Nov. 4 general election, the ballot initiative would be almost impossible to administer, Arakawa said.

“It’s going to require the county to become very invasive in that we’re going to have to go to almost every single person’s house, (inspect) every tree that’s there, be able to identify in our forests, in our pastures, all the potentially infested GMO products and somehow be able to control it,” he said Thursday, speaking at an event featuring panel discussions with mayoral, gubernatorial and county council candidates.

The intent of the initiative might have been to target large seed companies, but the bill is poorly written because it doesn’t exclude private residents, Arakawa said.

Arakawa didn’t take a formal stance on GMOs at the forum but has said he doesn’t believe they are harmful, the Maui News reported Friday (https://ow.ly/CfQRJ ).

Mayoral candidate Tamara Paltin, a county lifeguard, said she supports the ballot initiative for open-air experimental tests using large amounts of chemical combinations, until they can be proven safe.

“Large agricultural interests in the past have contaminated our groundwater,” she said.

Anti-GMO group Sustainable Hawaiian Agriculture for the Keiki and the Aina Movement gathered 19,000 signatures to put the measure on the ballot. The group, known as the SHAKA Movement, is the first citizens group in Maui County to have gathered enough support to put an initiative on the ballot.


Information from: The Maui News, https://www.mauinews.com

Copyright © 2018 The Washington Times, LLC.

The Washington Times Comment Policy

The Washington Times is switching its third-party commenting system from Disqus to Spot.IM. You will need to either create an account with Spot.im or if you wish to use your Disqus account look under the Conversation for the link "Have a Disqus Account?". Please read our Comment Policy before commenting.


Click to Read More

Click to Hide