Now it's Cleveland...
(31 August - Cropchoice News) -- American city councils are getting downright ornery on biotech. First it was George Bush's town of Austin, Texas calling for GMO labels. And there was Cargill's home turf, Minneapolis, Minnesota, which recently did the same. Not to be outdone, Boulder, Colorado just banned GMOs from 15,000 acres of city-owned farmland.
Now, Cropchoice has been sent a copy of a GMO labeling resolution recently passed by the city council in Cleveland, Ohio.
Except for the Boulder action, the new resolutions don't have any legal teeth – they’re just political documents. But they are a pretty good urban barometer on GMOs. The most unexpected aspect of them may be the geography. You might have expected these resolutions coming from San Francisco or New England; but instead they’re from cities in middle of America.
To get a taste, we’ve reprinted a copy of Cleveland City Council resolution 1432-2000 below, passed by council on August 7th and signed into law by the Mayor on the 17th.
RESOLUTION NO. 1432-2000
An Emergency Resolution
Urging the federal government to require labeling of genetically manipulated foods and further urging a moratorium on the production of such foods until acceptable testing systems are in place.
By: Councilmember Brady
WHEREAS, genetically engineered foods have not yet been proven safe and are not tested by any federal agency; and
WHEREAS, the Food and Drug Administration requires only that companies producing such genetically engineered foods state, on the "honor system", that such foods are safe with no further testing required; and
WHEREAS, a class action lawsuit has been brought against the Food and Drug Administration to prevent it from continuing to rush such untested foods on the market;
WHEREAS, numerous bioengineers and scientists have stated that the technology of genetically engineered foods is clearly different from traditional methods and could lead to a host of undesirable health and environmental problems; and
WHEREAS, such technology further has potential negative effects in genetic cross-pollination of beneficial plants, insects and other fragile ecosystems;
WHEREAS, this resolution constitutes an emergency measure for the immediate preservation of public peace, property, health or safety in that it is essential that the public know and understand how the foods it purchases are being produced and the possible health and environmental risks of such production, now, therefore,
BE IT RESOLVED BY THE COUNCIL OF THE CITY OF CLEVELAND:
Section 1. That this Council urges the federal government to require labeling of genetically manipulated foods and further urges a moratorium on the production of such genetically manipulated foods until acceptable testing systems are in place.
Section 2. That this resolution is hereby declared to be an emergency measure and, provided it receives the affirmative vote of two-thirds of all the members elected to Council, it shall take effect and be in force immediately upon its adoption and approval by the Mayor; otherwise it shall take effect and be in force from and after the earliest period allowed by law.