Greens call on Parliament to reaffirm a GM-Free SA

A Greens’ Bill to reaffirm the previous Parliament’s decision to legislate for a Genetically Modified crops moratorium across the whole of SA will be introduced into State Parliament this afternoon.

In 2017, the SA Parliament passed Greens’ legislation to ban the cultivation of GM crops in SA until September 2025.

“The Marshall Liberal Government has been intent on lifting the moratorium since they were elected last year. They strenuously opposed my Bill in 2017 and have since found a drafting loophole that they intend to exploit.” said Greens MLC Mark Parnell.

“Knowing the intent of the Parliament in 2017 was to maintain the moratorium until 2025, the Marshall Liberal Government are showing disrespect for the Parliament by not allowing the Parliament to debate legislation to lift the moratorium on mainland SA. Since they can’t lift the moratorium entirely without passing legislation through both Houses, they are instead sneakily changing the area that the moratorium relates to through regulations, leaving only Kangaroo Island as GM-free.

“Although the Upper House can disallow these regulations, they may not be tabled in Parliament in time for us to do so before they come into effect on 1 December 2019. That means that the moratorium could be lifted on 1 December 2019, and then reimposed in early 2020, if the Upper House disallow the regulations.

“This leaves farmers in a position of great uncertainty. They could begin signing contracts and purchasing GM seed after 1 December, only to find out a few months later that the ban is back in place.

“The Greens are reintroducing a Bill to allow the Parliament to make an earlier decision than 1 December, to give the farming sector some certainty, one way or another.

“There are also thousands of South Australians that want SA to remain GM-free, and the Greens are their voice in the SA Parliament” concluded Mark Parnell MLC.