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Hawaii island mayor signs bill restricting GMO crops

By Star-Advertiser staff

LAST UPDATED: 11:59 p.m. HST, Dec 05, 2013

Hawaii island Mayor Billy Kenoi Thursday afternoon signed a bill designed to limit the future planting of genetically modified crops.

"Our community has a deep connection and respect for our land, and we all understand we must protect our island and preserve our precious natural resources," Kenoi said in a statement.

The bill, approved last month by the Hawaii County Council 6-3, restricts the planting of genetically modified crops to enclosed structures like greenhouses.

Farmers who already grow GMO crops would be exempted from the new ban. That includes the Big Island Dairy and papaya growers, who largely rely on modified varieties that are resistant to the ringspot virus.

In 2008, the county adopted a more limited genetically modified organism bill that banned genetically modified coffee and taro.

Hawaii County is the second county in the state to restrict genetically modified crops. The Kauai County Council voted Nov. 16 to override a veto of a bill requiring large farms to disclose use of genetically modified crops.

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TaiBow wrote:
I didn't know much about GMO before seeing the movie, "At Any Price", but if this is an indication of how these GMO companies operate, then GMO's are not in the best interests of the Islands, and should be strictly limited, controlled, and regulated.
on December 5,2013 | 03:10PM
Anonymous wrote:
kenoi and his family and friends are GMO - through immunization...
on December 5,2013 | 04:49PM
Maneki_Neko wrote:
Good job, Billy.
on December 5,2013 | 03:13PM
Skyler wrote:
Kudos to Kenoi. Glad he's looking out for the best interest of Hawaii & her citizens.
on December 5,2013 | 03:40PM
walterritte wrote:
on December 5,2013 | 03:55PM
bluehawaii21 wrote:
Cool, I am moving to the Big Island
on December 5,2013 | 04:08PM
opalaedo wrote:
Got more brains than his counterpart on Kauai.
on December 5,2013 | 04:21PM
808PearlCity wrote:
Obviously, Kanoe has not read all of the research done on genetically modified crops. To limit the growing of genetically modified papayas to only current farmers and having others wanting to grow them, must grow them in greenhouses is insane! Check the research done on the Big Island to see what the research says! Don't be like the Republicans who say there is no global warming!
on December 5,2013 | 04:23PM
environmental_lady wrote:
Glad I'm living in the Big Island now and am growing only organic fruits and vegetables. No GMO crops for me or my neighbors.
on December 5,2013 | 04:32PM
shee26 wrote:
Hallelujah to ignorance! It rules in Hawaii! The way we do things here will always be 20 years behind or more. That's the way people want it to be. Forget innovation and research because we are all going back to the old ways to learn how hard it is to realize that we need newer ways. That's how we really want our islands to be. When you have a scientifically literate population of less than 30%, we shouldn't be surprised what comes out of all of this. The world is changing and Hawaii won't. No wonder all of our kids are leaving this place after being educated elsewhere.
on December 5,2013 | 05:21PM
Ronin006 wrote:
A comment that makes sense.
on December 5,2013 | 07:02PM
Wazdat wrote:
Nice to see an elected leader do what the people want.
on December 5,2013 | 05:32PM
Skyler wrote:
Kenoi for Governor!
on December 5,2013 | 06:43PM
bobjones wrote:
I understand the pesticide worries. But restricting GMO crops other than existing ones? That will go to court and I cannot imagine the law surviving a challenge to a county trying to override the Federal Farm Act. Plus, no evidence GMOs are harmful. Yes, they should be labeled. But banned? I'll bet the Big Island law will be tossed by the end of 2014. And that the Kauai law will perish just because the County doesn't have the money and manpower to set up and enforce those nebulous conditions on pesticide use. I think an over-arching state regulation will replace it in the next 6 months.
on December 5,2013 | 05:49PM
ohaibill1 wrote:
Bob, let them come and shove it down our throats. At least there will be some clarity to what is going down.
on December 5,2013 | 06:52PM
Hawaiiobserver wrote:
YAY!!! Thank you Mayor Kenoi!!! You did what is right.
on December 5,2013 | 05:59PM
Ronin006 wrote:
Science is meaningless to those who oppose GMO products. The reaction from politicians is like grease being applied to squeaking wheels.
on December 5,2013 | 07:12PM
st1d wrote:
i expect to see shark culling as a result of the recent shark attacks on maui. the councils will use sharknado claiming it is a documentary like al gore's. such is the sad state of science in hawaii.
on December 5,2013 | 07:52PM
noforget wrote:
Poor thing Kenoi mobetta let the transplants run the government forget the local farmer and ranchers. Willy, Ford, Barr, Ritte, Smith (yogic flyer), Shiva, Hooser, Wooley, Gabbard and now Kenoi have all partaken in the drinking of the "Organic Kool Aid" So what now Billy you strictly organic or you still suckem up and drink the GMO Beer and go grind at the local ono kine GMO food restaurants. Why stop at banning just new GMO crops why not ban all GMO's including the food you put in your mouth the clothes you wear and the medicine you take. Seems like the Big Island are following in the footsteps of the African countries that also ban GMO's "BACKWARDS"
on December 5,2013 | 08:39PM
jomama wrote:
Regardless of how you feel about GMO that's one wacky picture.
on December 5,2013 | 08:49PM
Eradication wrote:
Mahalo nui Mayor Kenoi. GM...NO!!!
on December 5,2013 | 09:36PM
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