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Byron Shire
August 14, 2022

Think globally act locally – make a difference

Latest News

Criminalising protest

In another Sstate government descent into criminalising protest, to protect their own government’s sabotage of a liveable planet, last...

Other News

Mullum locals protest flood-prone pod site

Around 40–50 locals gathered outside the Byron Shire Council chambers this morning to highlight the risks of, and lack of due process around, the selection of the flood accommodation pod site in Mullumbimby.

Nimblefoot launches tonight in Byron 

Acclaimed Bangalow author Robert Drewe, who will be featuring at Byron Writers Festival, is having his latest book Nimblefoot launched by Kerry O’Brien at The Book Room at Byron at 6pm tonight. 

Council: Goonellabah park not available for pods

Tuesday’s debate in the Lismore Council chambers was mostly about the community’s need for open, green space for sport and recreation balanced against the need for places to live.


​​An undeniable purpose in living is enjoyment, due to the fact that we have the capability to enjoy. What...

Lismore Council on gender equity in management

Last night Lismore Council met for their monthly meeting and Councillor Big Rob asked a question about gender equality in the upper echelons of Council.

Cartoon of the week – 10 August, 2022

The letters deadline for The Echo is noon Friday. Letters longer than 200 words may be cut. The publication of letters is at the discretion of the letters editor.

Still from The Worm is Turning

Hillary Bain

In late 2020 the Narendra Modi government in India hastily passed three laws pertaining to Indian agriculture, claiming that they would improve farmers’ lives. These laws are measures the IMF (International Monetary Fund) and World Bank have been demanding since the early 1990s, to bring Indian farming into the corporate agribusiness model created in the USA by the Rockefeller Foundation during and after World War II, and it’s the system Australia has been operating under since then.

Indian smallholder farmers took to the streets in the tens-of-millions in protest, and there are still farmers camped out, near Delhi, in protest four months later. They want all three laws repealed.

The farmers know that these laws are going to destroy their livelihood, and the land will be sold off to the big multinational corporations. This is a big deal, as there are well over 600 million people still on the land in India. Over half the population of India live on the land and one in four farmers in the world today is Indian!

UN food summit

It looks like Modi is preparing for the UN Food Systems Summit, to be held in September, as these laws are in alignment with the World Economic Forum’s (WEF) New Vision for Agriculture (NVA), part of Klaus Schwab’s Great Reset, The Fourth Industrial Revolution.

For the past 12 years WEF has been pushing for a corporate model in Africa, Latin America, and Asia. A lot of the biggest food and agri-chemical corporations are in the background, waiting to reap the rewards. The summit’s founding statement pushes ‘precision farming’ such as GPS, Big Data, robotics, and GMO as solutions.

The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation is involved, and Gates is promoting the products of Monsanto, as it hides out under Bayer Crop Sciences name. He’s repeating the failed Indian Green Revolution, in Africa, under the name, an Alliance for a Green Revolution in Africa (AGRA).

Thirteen countries are involved, and Gates is selling GMO seeds, pesticides, and synthetic fertiliser to impoverished farmers, who are forced into debt. They often end up with failed crops within a few years of farming this way. Hunger has increased 30 per cent according to the Alliance for Food Sovereignty in Africa (AFSA), and mostly among it’s women and children.

Gates put Robert Horsch in charge of the AGRA, a former senior executive with Monsanto. Gates is heavily invested in Bayer Crop Sciences and is a WEF sponsor.

So nothing’s changed in this global, corporate farming system, except removing human labour. There will still be synthetic fertiliser, pesticides, and GMOs, and monocultures.

High-tech not the solution

We’re being hoodwinked with high-tech solutions. That works out brilliantly for corporations, because they can continue poisoning the world, and make even more money, as there will be no cost of labour, except the initial installation of robots etc. Further, the world’s food production will now be massively centralised under corporate ownership.

This hugely centralised, corporate system is unsustainable, and famine, food shortages and hunger will result, as well as poisoning of the air, water, soil, and all life.

The good news is, we can change this scenario by supporting our local, small, biodiverse, organic farmers. We can increase the number of these farmers in our community to make our food system here more secure, more nutritious, to regenerate our soils, keep everyone healthy, create satisfying jobs, and to keep wealth in the local community. By doing this, we won’t be supporting the global monster that’s creating hell on Earth.

The Worm is Turning documentary was released five years ago, and today it is more relevant than ever. It is a documentary and by popular demand we are screening it at the Byron Community Centre on Wednesday 24 March at 6pm.

Panel discussion

There will be a panel discussion following the screening to discuss ‘How we can grow more food in the Byron Shire’. The panel will include Helena Norberg-Hodge, director of Local Futures; Bunya Halasz, head grower at Growing Roots Permaculture, Venetia Scott, GM of Hungry Earth Agroecology at The Farm; and co-ordinator of Young Farmers Connect and Andrew Cameron, Agriculture Extension Officer at Byron Shire Council.

The Worm is Turning is a powerful indictment against the global, corporate food, and agri-chemical giants. It is a testament to the productiveness of small, agro-ecological farmers.

Tickets are available online from byroncentre.com.au or at the door. Limited seats, so book early.

We all need to eat, so we’re all involved. Our power to change a toxic, wasteful, life-destroying, global farming system is through supporting local, agro-ecological, small-scale, biodiverse farming!

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Like all businesses we are struggling to keep food on the table of all our local and hard working journalists, artists, sales, delivery and drudges who keep the news coming out to you both in the newspaper and online. If you can spare a few dollars a week – or maybe more – we would appreciate all the support you are able to give to keep the voice of independent, local journalism alive.


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Mullum pods

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