GE Corn on Dyke farm in Courtenay 2017
August 27, 2017
Posted by on
Subject: Dyke corn fields 2017
( Letter sent to the Editor of the Record Aug 7 ,2017 as yet unplublished)
Once again our Courtenay estuary farmland is an image of abundance and plenty, the envy of all! A big bouquet to Ducks Unlimited and its lessees who in 2016 started using this fertile land to grow barley, flax and grass. But close by Ducks property, I see a field of corn growing without weeds and I have to wonder if this rich and fertile land, close to the sea, a feeding ground for migratory birds and an integral part of the sensitive estuary ecosystem, is being used to grow genetically engineered (GE) corn.
GE corn has been genetically manipulated to tolerate the pesticide glyphosate, (aka Round-Up). Spraying glyphosate over a field of GE corn will kill the weeds but not the corn. But that’s not all glyphosate does. Tests have found glyphosate to be damaging to aquatic and soil micro-organisms, frogs, bees and other wildlife. In 2015, the World Health Organisation’s Cancer agency (IARC), identified glyphosate as a ‘probable human carcinogen’. Since then, many cities and states have taken action on behalf of health and environment: California listed glyphosate as a carcinogen; the EU which already tightly regulated glyphosate, banned Round-Up as an over-the-counter weed killer; Hamburg and Barcelona have banned spraying Round-Up in public parks. On Vancouver Island, the municipalities of Victoria, Esquimalt, and Saanich have also banned the “general use” of Roundup.
In light of all the information, is it not time for the Comox Valley also, to review and redesign policies and practices around spraying glyphosate in urban areas to safeguard a healthy environment for the valley and our estuary? Please look for this beautiful weed free corn field the next time you drive by the estuary and if you are concerned, write or phone our Courtenay policy makers to say that we, Comox Valley residents, want a new policy for spraying glyphosate in an urban environment.
For more info on glyphosate: GMWatch.org