Earth Minute: Anne Petermann on ArborGen’s $53.M legal fine

The regular “Earth Minute” segment returns to KPFK radio’s Sojourner Truth show, with Global Justice Ecology Project’s Anne Petermann reporting on the latest developments in the environmental justice movement and highlighting the proliferation of false climate solutions.

This week, Petermann focuses on biotech company ArborGen’s $53.5 legal fine, after the genetically engineered tree firm defrauded and deceived it’s own employees over compensation packages.

The Earth Watch segment begins at about 35:45 mark.

Genetically Engineered Tree company ArborGen, based in South Carolina, was recently fined $53.5 million after a judge issued a scathing court ruling that the company used “trickery and deceit” to “defraud” employees.

ArborGen founders International Paper, MeadWestvaco and New Zealand-based Rubicon, plus several Executive Staff and Board members were also named in the suit. ArborGen’s pursuit of the commercial development of potentially dangerous GE eucalyptus, pine and other trees has been repeatedly condemned as reckless. Now that ArborGen has been found guilty of lying to and defrauding their own employees, it becomes impossible to believe anything they say about the ‘safety’ of these GE trees.

Last September, a colleague and I were arrested at ArborGen’s World Headquarters during a protest designed to highlight their refusal to publicly divulge their plans regarding GE loblolly pines. Those charges were suddenly dropped in December in the face of a possible jury trial. Many of ArborGen’s key staff came directly from Monsanto. Could this have something to do with their ethically-challenged behavior?

For the Earth Minute and the Sojourner Truth show, this is Anne Petermann from Global Justice Ecology Project.

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