Letters to the editor - October 15

Letters to the editor - October 15

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This week's Stock Journal featured letters on electricity prices and the lifting of the ban on GM crops.

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PROMISED ENERGY SAVINGS FAIL TO EVENTUATE AS PRICES RISE

The energy bills provided by AGL provide you with excellent information about your daily usage, daily cost and feed in tariff.

It is certainly appreciated and allows you to identify where you could make savings by reducing your usage during the billing period. Another feature included is a comparison of your usage and cost for the same billing period the previous year.

My bill advised me that I had a higher cost of 93 per cent this year, and that my average daily cost was $4.54 for 14.27 kilowatt-hours.

For the same period last year, my daily cost was $2.35 for 14.23kwh.

Included at the bottom of the email was this incomplete statement "On average you're spending more per day on your energy than this bill period last year" - because they put their charges up!

We constantly hear that our bills are going to go down - the question is when?

Ian Macgowan,

Ceduna.

SA'S AG SECTORS HAVE MUCH TO LOSE FROM SCRAPPING GM BAN

The SA wine industry stands to lose its key advantage - natural, uncontaminated products - if the wine regions become genetically-modified crop areas.

North America already has GM apples, vegetables and any number of field crops.

It is only a matter of time before GM grapes will be knocking on Australia's door, and there will be nothing to stop them - unless your council area is designated non-GM crop zone.

Why would federal and state governments want to compromise the multi-billion-dollar Australian plant and animal industries by allowing GM contamination loose in a world market reaching out for non-GM food and beverages, apart from dogma?

It is perfectly clear from PIRSA's Farm Gross Margins 2020 publication that SA farmers make more money growing non-GM canola than they can from GM canola.

The Anderson and Mecardo reports have been exposed as irrelevant, political documents. Rabobank and Cargill predict stable premiums for non-GM canola.

It is clear that GM ryegrass and canola genes can spread kilometres per year - even without being transported on vehicles and stock - and that material from mulch, inter-row swards and superweeds can enter the grapegrowing and harvesting process.

While conventional growers may get away with a small percentage of contamination, SA's 300 organic farmers, occupying well over 10 million hectares of the state, will lose their certification with the slightest crop contamination.

The Canadian canola experience is that conventional plant breeding ground to a halt when GM varieties of canola were released, as wind and insect GM cross-pollination was so 'successful' that it became too difficult to maintain non-GM status in the canola belt.

The elimination of Canadian competition is a reason why Australian non-GM canola has such a high premium.

With a lack of non-GM varieties being produced, it left Canadian farmers with few alternatives than to pay high prices for proprietary seed and technology every year, and put-up with an ever-increasing range of herbicide-tolerant weed species

Livestock products from animals fed GM byproducts like GM canola, cottonseed, safflower or meal made from them, cannot be marketed in expanding programs that prohibit GM feeds, such as already exist in a number of European countries.

Multi-billion-dollar incomes from clean food and beverages will be compromised by rolling over to GM lobbyists who can now make just as much money out of seed as the herbicides they are paired with.

The above claims are supported by peer-reviewed and publicly available documentation and I am happy to provide information to councils wishing to be designated non-GM crop areas.

Graham Brookman,

Gawler.

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