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Copeland: Govt must follow-up didymo breakthrough

Copeland: Govt must follow-up didymo breakthrough

United Future MP Gordon Copeland says it's vital the Government provides the necessary funding and infrastructure to capitalise on groundbreaking research on the freshwater invasive algae, didymo.

He's welcoming news that Waikato University scientists have isolated the DNA of didymo, an important step in the effort to contain it.

"From what I understand the isolation of DNA means that NIWA and MAF will be able to identify didymo in rivers before it becomes too widespread," said Mr Copeland.

"It is very encouraging to know that we are making scientific progress in finding a solution to didymo, it is important now to capitalise on this and continue to work towards didymo eradication.

According to Mr Copeland, "In terms of its impact, didymo is a potentially disastrous organism.

"Not only does it affect the health and aesthetic beauty of our rivers and streams, so popular with recreational users, but it also has potentially disastrous economic effects.

"There is a chance that didymo will interfere with hydroelectricity production, game fish numbers and even clog up water races and irrigators," said Mr Copeland.


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