of the government's Genetically Modified plants farmscale trial programme
is in tatters after a series of decontamination actions.
At the time of writing five of the twelve Spring oilseed rape sites and
four of the twelve maize sites have been partially destroyed.
In the last 3 weeks a total of 9 farmscale trials have been visited by
people taking immediate and pragmatic action against the pollution of
the countryside sponsored by the UK government and Aventis Plc.
This constitutes damage and possible invalidation to 18.75% of the total
FST evaluations currently being grown.
Chris Pollock, Head of the UK Scientific Steering Committee on Farm Scale
Evaluations said repeated attacks on the sites risked undermining the
entire project. "Obviously we have concerns that the numbers of trials
are low and that any damage to them which affects the ability to collect
data will have an effect on the total pool of information," he told
BBC radio. Pollock, who leads the committee that is overseeing the tests,
said scientists needed 60 to 75 sites over the three-year trial period
to ascertain if GM has any environmental fallout.
The government said that experts have a combined 48 sites that are valid
and another two years testing to go.
"We're not worried. This has all been taken into consideration and
we are still within our targets," a government spokeswoman said.
Since then, further 6 trials were substantially damaged.
This level of activity can no longer be written off as the work of 'vandals'
and the scale and range of actions represents a massive groundswell of
public feeling against the trials and the unwarranted risks that they
pose to the British countryside.
Daviot, Scotland, (Spring Oilseed Rape -SOSR) 15% destroyed.
Hutton Magna, Yorkshire, (SOSR), no information has been passed on about
the extent of the damage.
Chipping Campden Glouscester, (SOSR), 75% destroyed.
Hemel Hempstead, Herts (SOSR), 50+% destroyed.
Kempley, Glouscester, (SOSR), 50+% destroyed.
Over Compton, Dorset (LL Chardon Maize), 7 arrests, one person detained,
Wivenhoe, Essex, (LL Chardon Maize), 11 arrests, 25+% destroyed.
Headley Hall Farm, Yorkshire, (LL Chardon Maize), 60+% destroyed.
IARC Rothamstead, Herts, (LL Chardon Maize), 35+% destroyed.
Click here to find your nearest test site.
For more information:
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