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New ERMA board member appointed

15 December 2006

New ERMA board member appointed

A woman with extensive experience in public and environmental health is the newest appointee to the Environmental Risk Management Authority (ERMA), Associate Minister for the Environment, Nanaia Mahuta, announced today.

Dr Deborah Read joins the seven current Authority members to replace Anthony Haggerty, whose term expired on 31 October.

The Authority’s primary purpose is to protect people and the environment from the risks of hazardous substances and new organisms. It is responsible for making decisions on applications to import or manufacture new organisms and hazardous substances.

Nanaia Mahuta welcomed Dr Read to the Authority, saying she brought a high degree of understanding about environmental management and the effects of hazardous substances on human health in particular.

“Dr Read has the necessary practical knowledge of potential public health issues surrounding the management of hazardous substances, including industry and business practices. I am delighted she is joining the board,” she said.

“Dr Read’s skills complement the other members’ expertise in gene technology and biotechnology, environmental impact assessment skills, and practical governance ability.”

Dr Read is a Medical Officer of Health for the Regional Public Health division of the Hutt Valley District Health Board, Chair of the Ministry of Health’s Organochlorines Technical Advisory Group and is a member of its Environmental Health Action Plan. She has published extensively on issues relating to environmental risks, community health and mental health, and received the World Health Organisation Fellowship in 1995.

The Environmental Risk Management Authority includes people with knowledge of Maori and community issues, knowledge of environmental law, and 'on the ground' expertise in dealing with hazardous substances.

ENDS

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