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GE fungus escapes at Lincoln University

GE fungus escapes at Lincoln University

Officials are investigating how a genetically modified soil fungus escaped containment facilities at Lincoln University, near Christchurch.

The fungus was found in restricted access laboratories and greenhouses on university grounds earlier this month, but the Ministry for Primary Industries (MPI) says does not yet know how it escaped the tighter security.

It believes the environmental threat is very low.

The genetic modification involved adding marker genes to indicate the fungus' presence in research plants.

"At this stage, we believe it is unlikely any potentially genetically modified Beauveria bassiana fungus has spread further," said MPI's Roger Smith.

All samples and plant materials known to contain the modified fungus have been secured. MPI was now checking if any other material may have been inadvertently exposed to the fungus.

Lincoln University assistant vice-chancellor Stefanie Rixecker says researchers had believed they were working with a wild fungus, before it was discovered it had a genetic marker attached to it.

The university took breaches of containment very seriously and the investigation would be very thorough, she said.

The Green Party says the release is a "massive wake up call to our environmental regulators".

"It's absolutely not acceptable that almost two weeks after this breach the ministry still doesn't know how it occurred," said genetic engineering spokesman Steffan Browning.

Council brings control of outdoor use of genetically modified organisms a step closer


WHANGAREI DISTRICT COUNCIL

Media Release  14 March 2013

 

Council brings control of outdoor use of genetically modified organisms a step closer

 

 

www.wdc.govt.nz/NewsRoom/Latest-News/Pages/Outdoor-GMO-control-systems-on-way.aspx

 

Introducing a robust, legal way for local government to manage the risks posed by outdoor use of genetically modified organisms (GMOs) is a step closer following a decision by Whangarei District Council’s District Living Committee.

 

WHANGAREI DISTRICT COUNCIL TAKES A STAND AGAINST GMO LAND USE

  GE FREE NZ (Northland)  in food and environment

CRUNCH TIME TO PROTECT OUR EXISTING VALUABLE GE FREE STATUS IN NORTHLAND- OPPORTUNITY TO MAKE A FURTHER SUBMISSION TO THE NRC PROPOSED REGIONAL POLICY STATEMENT

Crunch time to protect our existing valuable GE free status in Northland

Urgent CALL TO ACTION :) from GE FREE NORTHLAND

The good news- over 330 anti-GMO original submissions were made by Northlanders and their District Councils to the NRC proposed Regional Policy Statement (the over arching document for Northland for the next 10 years) last December.  These submissions asked the NRC in no uncertain terms to include a precautionary GE policy/ provision (at the very least! ...many submittors prefer outright prohibition of all outdoor GMOs) in the NRC new Regional Policy Statement

Well done! to everyone who made a submission!

The bad news is- both "Federated Farmers of NZ" (headquarters in Hamilton) and the Northland farming organisation that calls itself "Farmers of NZ" (NRC Clr Ian Walker is the President of "Farmers of NZ"!) have made original submissions to the NRC.  The GE section of their submissions oppose the NRC including any "methods, policies or rules" to deal with GMOs on a local level, or even the NRC including a precautionary GE policy/ provision in the NRC new Regional Policy Statement...they also object to the NRC identifying the GE issue as an Issue of Significance for Northland.

The submission by Federated Farmers of NZ...and... the submission by Farmers of NZ (Northland) must be challenged!
It is of grave concern that NRC Clr Ian Walker is both President of "Farmers of NZ", (the Northland farming lobby group who submitted against the NRC identifying the GE issue as an Issue of Significance for Northland) and the Chairman of the NRC Regional Policy Committee (clear conflict of interest).  Clr Walker was instrumental in getting the precautionary GE provision- that the NRC itself proposed in the NRC RPS Discussion Document 2010- dropped from the NRC proposed RPS

NORTHERN COUNCILS COLLABORATIVELY ADDRESS THE RISKS OF GENETICALLY MODIFIED ORGANISMS TO THE REGION




GE FREE NORTHLAND in food and environment

Press Release   5 February 2013

NORTHERN COUNCILS COLLABORATIVELY ADDRESS THE RISKS OF GENETICALLY MODIFIED ORGANISMS TO THE REGION

GE Free Northland welcomes the recommendations of the Inter Council Working Party on GMOs, publicly released yesterday on behalf of its member councils from south Auckland to Cape Reinga. The ICWP on GMOs has produced draft planning provisions, a section 32 evaluation supporting those provisions, and a legal opinion from Dr. Royden Somerville QC, for the Northland /Auckland councils to consider.

The councils have carried out a thorough evaluation of the necessity for regulation of GMOs at a district and/ or regional level, in addition to national regulation under the Hazardous Substances and New Organisms (HSNO) Act.

"We congratulate Whangarei, Kaipara and Far North District Council and Auckland Council for funding this collaborative work, which confirms the widely held view that a strong precautionary approach to GMOs, or even outright prohibition, is necessary to prevent potentially enormous costs falling on ratepayers from damage arising from GE experiments or release of GE organisms", said Martin Robinson, spokesperson for GE Free Northland

GMOs: Councils Consider Prohibiting Commercial Outdoor Uses



GMOs: Councils Consider Prohibiting Commercial Outdoor Uses

Monday, 4 February 2013, 11:59 am
Press Release: Whangarei District Council


Media Release

4 February 2013

GE Free Northland ...meeting... Whangarei, 6pm Tues 5 February at CBEC Ecosolutions

Gidday Greenies,

GE Free Northland is holding a strategic meeting, regarding the NRC Regional Policy Statement review, and how we can constructively participate in the next round of submissions...and also good news regarding the innovative work of the Northland / Auckland INTER COUNCIL WORKING PARTY ON GMO RISK EVALUATION & MANAGEMENT OPTIONS

ALL welcome :)

Thanks to everyone who already made submissions to the NRC proposed RPS...but there is more to be done to achieve sound environmental and economic outcomes in our region

Tuesday evening, 6pm   Venue: Eco Solutions (CBEC) Environment Centre, 3 Bank St Whangarei (opposite the Rose St bus depot and the Grand Hotel

More info: Zelka Linda Grammer, Chairperson, GE Free Northland  09 4322155  Maungakaramea
email: linda.grammer@gmail.com

ACTION ALERT protect our existing valuable GE free status- have yr say NRC proposed RPS document missing the precautionary

Do you want to protect Northland's existing valuable GE free status? 

Do you want the Northland Regional Council to retain their precautionary GE provision (policy)?

Would you like an over arching precautionary policy for the region, to address various environmental threats like GMOs and mining?

10 minutes action now, lobbying Northland Regional Council through your written submission,  can help protect our region from GMOs... and ...achieve NZ"s first enforceable Regional Exclusion Zone for GMOs

ACTION ALERT:

Northland Regional Council has released the NRC proposed Regional Policy Statement (RPS), the over arching document for the next 10 years for Northland region.

The document has a glaring omission- - it is missing the council's own precautionary GE provision (policy) that you, the ratepayers, have already supported through a multitude of submissions during the informal stage of the NRC Regional Policy Statement review
www.nrc.govt.nz/Your-Council/Council-Projects/New-Regional-Policy-Statement-/Have-your-say---Proposed-RPS/

Submissions close Monday, 3 December 2012, 5pm (see below for details on how to make a submission- it's easy!)

Have your say - Proposed RPS

The Proposed Regional Policy Statement for Northland – which includes proposed maps of Northland’s outstanding areas and coastal land – is now out for public consultation.  This is your opportunity to achieve sound environmental and economic outcomes on a range of important issues.

the NRC says on their website: "We want your views to know if we’ve got it right."  

On the specific GE issue, the NRC has got it badly wrong!

ACTION ALERT protect our existing valuable GE free status- have yr say NRC proposed RPS document missing the precautionary

Do you want to protect Northland's existing valuable GE free status? 

Do you want the Northland Regional Council to retain their precautionary GE provision (policy)?

Would you like an over arching precautionary policy for the region, to address various environmental threats like GMOs and mining?

10 minutes action now, lobbying Northland Regional Council through your written submission,  can help protect our region from GMOs... and ...achieve NZ"s first enforceable Regional Exclusion Zone for GMOs

ACTION ALERT:

Northland Regional Council has released the NRC proposed Regional Policy Statement (RPS), the over arching document for the next 10 years for Northland region.

The document has a glaring omission- - it is missing the council's own precautionary GE provision (policy) that you, the ratepayers, have already supported through a multitude of submissions during the informal stage of the NRC Regional Policy Statement review
www.nrc.govt.nz/Your-Council/Council-Projects/New-Regional-Policy-Statement-/Have-your-say---Proposed-RPS/

Submissions close Monday, 3 December 2012, 5pm (see below for details on how to make a submission- it's easy!)

Have your say - Proposed RPS

The Proposed Regional Policy Statement for Northland – which includes proposed maps of Northland’s outstanding areas and coastal land – is now out for public consultation.  This is your opportunity to achieve sound environmental and economic outcomes on a range of important issues.

the NRC says on their website: "We want your views to know if we’ve got it right."  

On the specific GE issue, the NRC has got it badly wrong!

Crown Research Institute Speaks With Forked Tongue In Opposing GMO Accountability

http://press.gefree.org.nz/press/20120913.htm

Crown Research Institute Speaks With Forked Tongue In Opposing GMO Accountability   

 

GE FREE NZ Press Release

13 September 2012

 

GE Free NZ and Bay of Plenty ratepayers who were original submitters to a local Bay of Plenty plan have received notice of an appeal to the Environment Court, lodged by NZ Crown Research Institute Scion. This appeal contests the Environment Bay of Plenty Regional council's (BOPRC) "Precautionary approach" to GMO release and field trialling in the region.

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