Find the latest information on breaking news and upcoming events from the Campaign to STOP GE Trees press releases and media advisories:
For Immediate Release – 21 October 2016
Genetically Engineered Trees Condemned in Region known as “Ground Zero” for Their Development
North Myrtle Beach, SC– In the aftermath of Hurricane Matthew, which made landfall only days before, strategies to stop the development of genetically engineered trees (GE trees) were the topic at a meeting that brought Indigenous Peoples, scientists, ecologists, and legal, social and environmental justice experts to North Myrtle Beach over October 12-18.
GE trees would threaten forests and communities throughout the U.S. Southeast–known by activists as “ground zero” for the development of GE trees.
Global Justice Ecology Project, Biofuelwatch and the Indigenous Environmental Network, all members of the North American Coordinating Committee against GE Trees (NACC), organized the meeting. Groups from across the region and the country took part in the meeting , including participants from several new organizations: ActionAid, Hip Hop Caucus, Beyond Toxics and Heartwood.
Topics included the exploitation of migrant labor for industrial tree plantations promoted by South Carolina based GE tree company ArborGen , the dangerous impacts of toxic herbicides and pesticides used in tree plantations, and the links between GE trees, biomass energy and worsening climate change.
North Myrtle Beach (13 October 2016) –Indigenous peoples, scientists, lawyers and environmental experts will gather in North Myrtle Beach, SC over October 12-18 to discuss impacts of and strategies to combat genetically engineered trees (GE trees), with a focus on the U.S. Southeast.
South Carolina and the Southeast US have been called “ground zero” for the development of GE trees in the United States. While no GE trees have been deregulated for commercial production here, hundreds of test plots of GE trees are growing throughout the region in part thanks to ArborGen, a global leader in GE tree research and development whose World Headquarters are in Ridgeville, SC. ArborGen has been the subject of several protests over the years due to their pursuit of GE trees.
Strategy meeting participants will discuss breaking developments surrounding several engineered trees, including Eucalyptus, Loblolly pine and American chestnut trees.
IUFRO Tree Biotechnology Conference Denounced for Promoting GMO Trees
New York (8 June 2015, 0:00 GMT) – From 8 to 12 June, Florence, Italy will be the host city for the International Union of Forest Research Organizations’ (IUFRO) highly controversial Tree Biotechnology Conference, where corporations, scientists and university researchers come together to discuss the benefits of biotechnology and genetic engineering in trees. At the last IUFRO Tree Biotechnology Conference, which took place in Asheville, NC (US) in 2013, huge protests against genetically engineered trees disrupted the five-day conference. There were several arrests. The Campaign to STOP GE Trees will be present at this year’s IUFRO conference.
GMO Trees Approved in Brazil in Violation of National Law and International Protocols: Common Sense & Precaution Ignored
Montevideo, UY and New York, US (9 April 2015) – Today the Brazilian Technical Commission on Biosafety (CTNBio) formally approved an industry request to release genetically engineered (GE) eucalyptus trees. The application was made by FuturaGene, a company owned by Brazilian pulp and paper company Suzano. This is the first approval for commercial release of GE trees in Brazil or Latin America. Organizations in Brazil are exploring legal avenues to stop the commercial release of GE eucalyptus trees, pointing out that this decision violates national law.
Árvores geneticamente modificadas são aprovadas no Brasil: bom sendo e precaução Ignorados
Decisão viola leis nacionais e protocolos internacionais
Montevidéu, Uruguai, e Nova York, Estados Unidos (9 de abril de 2015) – A Comissão Técnica Nacional de Biossegurança (CTNBio) se reuniu hoje e aprovou formalmente uma solicitação da indústria para liberar uma árvore de eucalipto geneticamente modificada (GM), feita pela empresa FuturaGene, de propriedade da empresa brasileira de papel e celulose Suzano. Esta é a primeira aprovação de liberação comercial de árvores transgênicas no Brasil e na América Latina. Organizações do Brasil estão considerando a possibilidade de entrar na justiça para impedir a liberação de árvores transgênicas, que viola a legislação nacional.
New York (2 April 2015) – Concerned citizens demonstrated at Brazilian consulates and embassies located around the world this week, as part of a second week of global protests demanding that the Brazilian government reject an industry request to commercialize genetically engineered (GE) eucalyptus trees.
A crescente mobilização global contra as árvores transgênicas no Brazil: protestos nas Embaixadas e Consulados do Brasil
Nova York (2 de abril 2015) – Nesta semana, cidadãos preocupados realizaram manifestações em frente aos consulados e embaixadas do Brasil em diferentes países do mundo, como atividade da segunda semana de protestos globais pedindo que o governo Brasileiro rejeite o pedido da indústria para o plantio comercial de árvores de eucalipto transgênicas.
Occupations in Brazil Today Follow Emergency Global Day of Action on 3 March
New York (5 March 2015)–This morning 300 peasants organized by La Via Campesina occupied the meeting of the Brazil National Biosafety Technical Commission (CTNBio) in Brasilia, which was convening to discuss the release of three new varieties of transgenic plants in Brazil including a request by FuturaGene to legalize their genetically engineered eucalyptus trees. The CTNBio meeting was interrupted and eventually cancelled.
New York (3 March 2015) – Organizations on four continents took action today at Brazilian consulates and embassies as part of the Emergency Global Day of Action to STOP Genetically Engineered Trees. The groups are demanding the government of Brazil reject an industry request to legalize genetically engineered (GE) eucalyptus trees there.
Groups Condemn US for Bowing to Industry, Ignoring Widespread Public Opposition
New York (29 Jan. 2015) – Groups from around the world  today joined together to denounce the US government for allowing the first genetically engineered tree, a loblolly pine, to be legalized with no government or public oversight, with no assessment of their risks to the public or the environment, and without regard to overwhelming public opposition to GE trees.
October, 2014, Qualla Boundary, North Carolina–In the shadow of Columbus Day and the legacy of colonization in the Americas, the Indigenous Environmental Network  and Eastern Band of Cherokee community members organized a gathering of Indigenous Peoples from across the Southeastern US for an historic Indigenous Peoples’ action camp against genetically engineered trees (GE trees). Participants condemned GE trees as a form of colonization of the forest.
Groups unite to call on Brazil to deny application to legalize genetically engineered eucalyptus trees
September, 2014 – Two letters [1, 2] signed by hundreds of organizations from around the world were delivered today to the Brazilian National Technical Biosafety Commission (CTNBio) calling on them to deny a pending request by the FuturaGene Corporation to commercially release genetically engineered (GE) eucalyptus trees  in Brazil. This occurred in the capital Brasilia during a CTNBio public hearing on the FuturaGene request. CTNBio is the Brazilian governmental institution charged with authorizing commercial release of GMOs (genetically modified organisms) in that country.
Groups globally mobilize to stop commercial release of genetically engineered eucalyptus trees in Brazil and US
August, 2014 – Two unprecedented applications are pending that, if approved, would allow the commercial sale of millions of genetically engineered (GE) eucalyptus trees for development into vast industrial GE tree plantations in the US and Brazil. The Campaign to STOP GE Trees  is expanding and mobilizing to stop these and all large-scale releases of GE trees into the environment.
April 4, 2014 — Scientists and environmentalists today condemned a recent press release by researchers at the University of British Columbia announcing they have created genetically engineered (GE) poplar trees for paper and biofuel production, opening the prospect of growing these GE trees like an agricultural crop in the future. Read More
April 1, 2014 –Last week the annual International biomass industry conference was held in Orlando, Florida. Industry executives from around the world attended to learn about the latest technologies, discuss biomass “supply chains” and network together. This year’s event featured a special “pellet supply chain summit” where the topic of discussion was the rapidly escalating export of southeastern U.S. forests to Europe, where they are burned in old coal plants or stand-alone biomass electricity facilities. Read More