Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | Video | Questions Of the Day | Search


Stricter Controls Still Leave Wild Salmon At Risk

The Green Party said today that stricter controls on a genetically
engineered salmon experiment have failed to provide the wild salmon
population with enough of a safety net.

"The stricter controls imposed by the Environmental Risk Management
Authority (ERMA) on the research by NZ King Salmon have brought the
containment standards up to the level required under the Hazardous
Substances and New Organisms Act, and of course I see that as an
improvement," said Co-Leader Jeanette Fitzsimons.

"But there is an important point everyone is missing - this research near
Blenheim is of no use unless it can lead to commercial growing of salmon in
sea cages, and salmon in sea cages escape," she said. "While there are few
New Zealand studies about this, one overseas study has found that a quarter
of all `wild' salmon from one river in Norway came from salmon farms.

"I challenge King Salmon to declare that none of its non-genetically
engineered sea-caged salmon in the Marlborough Sounds have escaped. It
would contradict what we have been told by local fishermen, company staff
and by Conservation Department officers."

In a recent study by Purdue University (Indiana, United States) researchers
found that a 0.1 per cent intrusion of transgenic fish into a wild stock
could bring that population to extinction within 40 generations where the
gene reduces the offspring's ability to survive. They have dubbed this
decimation theory the "Trojan gene hypothesis", on the grounds that the gene
gets into the population looking like something good but ends up destroying
the population.*

"Uncontrollable incidents such as a hole being torn in the mesh or more
importantly in respect to King Salmon's Kaituna Hatchery near Blenheim -
flooding - could also potentially result in eggs escaping from research
tanks into the wild. To date there has been little monitoring of conditions
set by ERMA and we have seen nothing to reassure us that the integrity of
the new screens will be regularly checked."

Nelson-based King Salmon conceded last year that a small percentage of the
genetically engineered fish had been spawned with large, bumpy heads at its
Blenheim research facility.

* Published in New Scientist December 1999.


© Scoop Media

Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Scoop 3.0: How You Can Help Scoop’s Evolution

Entering into its third decade of operation, the Scoop news ecosystem is set to undergo another phase of transformation and evolution.

We have big plans for 2018 as we look to expand our public interest journalism coverage, upgrade our publishing infrastructure and offer even more valuable business tools to commercial users of Scoop. More>>


Speaking Of Transport: Public Engagement On Wellington Scenarios

“Our work on possible solutions for Wellington’s transport future is ongoing, but has progressed to the stage where we’re ready to share our ideas with the public and seek their feedback to help guide our next steps...” More>>


Parental Leave: National's Time-Sharing Change Fails

National has proposed a change to the Parental Leave and Employment Protection Amendment Bill that would allow both parents to take paid parental leave at the same time, if that is what suits them best. More>>


Train Free Thursday: Workers Strike To Defend Terms Of Employment

"They signed up to these conditions a year ago when they got the contract for Wellington's rail services. Now they're trying to increase profits by squeezing frontline workers." More>>


Seclusion: Ombudsman Emphasises Importance Of Monitoring

Disability Rights Commissioner Paula Tesoriero says that while there have been changes to the Education (Update) Amendment Act 2017 to prohibit the use of seclusion, the report is an important reminder of the importance of regular monitoring of schools. More>>


United Future History: "All Good Things Must End"

'We’re extremely proud of what we’ve achieved over the past 15 years, working alongside the government of the day, both National and Labour.' Mr Light told members on Monday. More>>

Gordon Campbell: On The TPP Outcome, And The Hobbit Law

Somehow the Trans Pacific Partnership trade deal has come lurching back from the dead – and as predicted in this column last week, the member countries gathered in Vietnam have announced a deal in broad principle, shunted aside until a later date the stuff on which they don’t agree, and declared victory. More>>

Agreeing To Differ: Greens Maintain Opposition To TPPA
“The Green Party has long opposed the TPPA. The new proposed deal, which came out of the weekend’s talks, still contains key ISDS concessions to corporations that put our democracy at risk, so our position remains the same,” said Green Party trade spokesperson Golriz Ghahraman. More>>


Monitoring Report: A New Chapter For Children’s Rights In New Zealand?

The Children’s Commissioner is calling on the country to embrace children’s rights to ensure their overall well-being. More>>





Featured InfoPages

Opening the Election