That is the consequence of doing nothing, the ‘precautionary approach’ so lauded by their champions in the corridors of power at the UN, the EU, and now in the USA through the Obama administration. By ‘doing nothing’ the powerful environmentalist lobby groups of ‘Friends of the Earth’ and ‘Greenpeace’ have caused suffering and death on a truly monumental scale.
That is unforgivable.
Environmentalists live in fear because they cannot understand, and are therefore afraid, of science. Fear radiates from them through every pronouncement, every action, every roadblock they place in the way of progress. They are the alarmists, the catastrophisers, the disaster-mongers. Their appalling love of pseudo-science and hatred of the scientific method has turned them into a quai-religious cult movement of fundamentalists.
This is not benign. It is evil.
But you can only fool all of the people some of the time. That time is up. Gradually, a quiet revolution is happening. You won’t hear much about it in the left-controlled media but it is there. Most recently the EU has voted to allow nation states to decide their own policy on GM crops rather than have to toe the Brussels line.
The day before the vote Matt Ridley wrote this piece from which I have selected extracts. It is worth reading in full which you can do by following this link.
The European Parliament votes tomorrow on whether to let countries decide their own policies on growing genetically modified crops. The vote would allow countries such as Britain to press ahead because of hard evidence that such crops are good for the environment, good for consumers and good for farmers; and let countries such as Austria continue to ban the things despite such evidence. It’s an alliance of the rational with the superstitious against the bureaucratic.
Scientifically, the argument over GM crops is as good as over. With nearly half a billion acres growing GM crops worldwide, the facts are in. Biotech crops are on average safer, cheaper and better for the environment than conventional crops. Their benefits accrue disproportionately to farmers in poor countries. The best evidence comes in the form of a “meta-analysis” — a study of studies — carried out by two scientists at Göttingen University, in Germany.
The strength of such an analysis is that it avoids cherry-picking and anecdotal evidence. It found that GM crops have reduced the quantity of pesticide used by farmers by an average of 37 per cent and increased crop yields by 22 per cent. The greatest gains in yield and profit were in the developing world.
African farmers have been mostly denied genetically modified crops by the machinations of the churches and the greens, aided by the European Union’s demand that imports not be transgenically improved. Otherwise, African farmers would now be better able to combat drought, pests, vitamin deficiency and toxic contamination, while not having to buy so many sprays and risk their lives applying them.
Yet the Green Blob realises that it has made a mistake here. Not a financial mistake — it made a fortune out of donations during the heyday of stoking alarm about GM crops in the late 1990s — but the realisation that all it has achieved is to prolong the use of sprays and delay the retreat of hunger.
In practice, we in Europe may have missed most of the GM revolution, for the next technologies are different again. The future lies with a combination of conventional breeding with precise gene-editing, rather than gene transplants from other species. This should enable the last of the critics of GM crops to climb off their high horses without anybody noticing.
Supporters of GM crops have no wish to ban conventional or organic varieties. They just want to allow GM crops as well. Their opponents, however, insist on total intolerance of things they abhor. There are echoes here of the battle for free speech.
GM crops to be fast-tracked in UK following EU vote GM maize likely to be authorised in near future, as MEPs vote in favour of new rules to allow countries to choose whether to grow GM crops
This is my last blog for a week. I am away in Rotorua. The next blog will be on Saturday 14th March.