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Didymo having devastating effect on environment

Shane Ardern MP
National Party Biosecurity Spokesman
19 April 2006

Didymo having devastating effect on environment

National Party Biosecurity spokesman Shane Ardern has seen first-hand the devastating damage on rivers in the Otago region from the algae Didymo.

Yesterday he visited the Clutha River to view the accumulated effects of Didymo on the environment.

“The long-term effects of the accumulation of the dead algae will not be known for some time, because this silicon-based algae does not break down in the environment quickly,” says Mr Ardern.

“However, quite clearly Didymo has already had a devastating effect on the biodiversity of the rivers in the region.

“No longer can this Labour-led Government beat its chest in Wellington and claim to have the best biosecurity system in the world, when time after time we are seeing the effects of one incursion after another.

“As research on how to contain or possibly eradicate Didymo continues, we must do everything we can to try and stop this algae from spreading further.

“And we need tighter border controls and to react swiftly and effectively to any possible biosecurity incursions.”

ENDS

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