DuPont guilty in Waimea, Kauai

SOURCE:Shannon Rudolph (
SUBHEAD: First 10 of 150 Waimea residents suing GMO giant DuPont awarded $507,000 for damages.

By Staff on 8 May 2015 for Babes Against Biotech -

Image above: The Big Six GMO Corporations killing us: Monsanto, DuPont, Syngenta, Dow, BASF, Bayer.  From (
DuPont \/Pioneer guilty At least $507,090 was awarded today to the first 15 of over 150 Waimea, Kauai residents who have been long suffering the pesticide laden dust coming off GMO test fields experimenting with chemicals.

Over 150 residents near DuPont/Pioneer's test fields sued the multinational chemical company, for pesticide dust, health and environmental damages, however the Judge did not allow health or environmental claims. Through discovery in this lawsuit we have discovered at least 80 different pesticides being tested by just one of 5 chemical companies operating in Hawaii.

We have discovered and plaintiff attorneys have brought to light the questionable practices and operations of DuPont/Pioneer. The case came down to only dust damages to property and loss of enjoyment of property for only 2009-2011, neglecting the fact that DuPont/Pioneer has been operating in that neighborhood around 18 years. The witnesses and plaintiffs were also not allowed to tell the jury that the dust is laden with heavy pesticides and experimental genetic material.

The average settlement per person awarded damages was $33,806 per person or $56,343 per household. Since it was a bellwether trial, only 15 plaintiffs (making 10 households) took part in the trial portion, and the judgements awarded will be used in negotiations for a mass settlement for over 150 people.

Though it does not address the health and environmental impacts, which are our greatest concerns, today is a huge victory in the courts for all the people of Hawaii in Kauai, Maui, Molokai and Oahu who are affected by the chemical test fields. This is the first class action lawsuit against the chemical companies regarding the pesticide dust and we doubt it will be the last.

We do however, expect an appeal from the DuPont/Pioneer legal team who spent some of the case having giggling exchanges and cracking quiet jokes to each other in the courtroom.

If each of the at least 150 plaintiffs were awarded the average of $33,806, the settlement could total more than $5,000,000.00. The estimates estimated damages at least by loss of enjoyment of property $50/hour at least 2 hours per day.

 Other known chemical GE test fields exist up and down the westside of Kauai, in Lihue, Kunia and Haleiwa on Oahu, throughout Molokai and in Kihei on Maui. Thousands of Hawaii households near the chemical test fields affected by the test fields, could signal larger problems in the courts for the chemical cartel in the future.

These are the questions our court reporter and amazing cartoonist BAB Lauryn Rego and all the plaintiffs got answered today:

"Yes. Did Pioneers dust trespass? Yes. Was pioneers conduct the legal cause in significantly interfering with each Plaintiffs use and enjoyment of his or her property? Yes. Did the seriousness of harm to each Plaintiff outweigh the public benefit of Pioneers operation? Yes."

To us, one of the greatest themes we received in the verdict is this: Did the seriousness of harm to each Plaintiff outweigh the public benefit of Pioneers operation? Yes.

Yes. The seriousness of the harms to plaintiff in property damages have long exceeded the public benefit of the chemical companies doing what DuPont/Pioneer do in Hawaii, and specifically proven now in regards to Pioneer and Waimea. This doesn't even include the health, and environmental damages that were not allowed in this particular case. Stay tuned for the latest on GE and pesticide issues on the frontlines in Hawaii, GMO Ground Zero worldwide.

MAHALO TO KYLE SMITH AND PLAINTIFF ATTORNEYS! Thank you for doing all you could to achieve justice for our Waimea ohana, we know this is only the beginning! #waimeatrial

Pulling Back The Curtain

By Gary Hooser on 9 May 2015 in Island Breath - 

Jury verdict unanimous, DuPont Pioneer guilty of harming Waimea Kauai residents

It has taken years for Waimea residents to finally hold DuPont Pioneer accountable and it is still not over.  However yesterday a jury in Honolulu unanimously ruled that this company must pay for the damages caused by their irresponsible actions.

According to the Honolulu Star Advertiser story

"The verdict said DuPont Pioneer failed to follow generally accepted agricultural and management practices from Dec. 13, 2009, to Dec. 31, 2011, and that the "seriousness of the harm to each plaintiff outweighs the public benefit of Pioneer's farming operation." "

The court action focused on property damage caused by the vast amounts of pesticide laden dust that has blown on to these homes and residents for years.

However, if the dust is bad enough to cause property damage then it surely must be causing damage also to health and environment.

To be clear, this lawsuit is unrelated to the Syngenta led suit against the County of Kauai now under appeal.

The existence of the DuPont Pioneer lawsuit was early evidence that when combined with many other factors, precipitated the introduction of Bill 2491 and the attempt to regulate this industry on Kauai.

Credit for victory goes entirely to the perseverance of Waimea Town residents.

The facade presented through the “Good Neighbor” persona created by the community relations and media guru’s of these companies is quickly evaporating.

No amount of money or industry PR can erase the fact that a unanimous jury decision found them guilty of harm.

The curtain is being drawn back for the whole world to now see the hypocrisy of DuPont Pioneer calling themselves a “good neighbor” while continuing to cause damage to local residents for years after the initial complaints were filed.

Meanwhile another self proclaimed “good neighbor” Syngenta continues to use and sell highly toxic Restricted Use Pesticides (atrazine, paraquat and 4 others) that are illegal to use in their own country.

What kind of good neighbor uses toxic pesticides by the ton in their neighbor’s yard but yet uses zero of these chemicals in their own yard back home in Switzerland because their laws will not allow it (all the while telling you how safe it is)?

Syngenta will deny and obfuscate this fact.  But if you have doubts, read this recent New York Times article ( about how Syngenta misrepresents the truth with regards to the use of atrazine in their own country.

What kind of good neighbors sue their local government for merely requiring modest disclosure and basic buffer zones around schools, hospitals and homes?

It will be interesting to see how the industry spins this one.

These companies are harming our community.  They consistently misrepresent themselves, the nature of their actions and the negative impact of their actions on our health, environment and yes on our property as well.

Community members who live near the fields and have to deal with these companies up close and personal know this.  Those of us who have been involved in this battle for the past few years know it as well.

I am increasingly hopeful that more and more residents of Kauai and all Hawaii will begin to see and understand the nature and urgency of our efforts and join with us in demanding accountability.

Mahalo to those residents and community leaders who have persevered and are responsible for this win.

Auwe to those government and industry leaders who have failed in their duties to support these good people.

• Gary Hooser is a County Councilman on Kauai who was key to establishing legislation to manage restrictive use pesticides used experimentally on Kauai by GMO companies.


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