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New Organisms Bill Select Committee

New Organisms Bill Select Committee

PSRG is extremely disturbed that Jeanette Fitzsimons is not on the Parliamentary Select Committee that is to consider the New Organisms Bill. Ms Fitzsimons is without doubt the most knowledgeable Member of Parliament in regard to genetic engineering biotechnology.

The New Organisms Bill will institute a new regulatory regime for the release of genetically engineered organisms (GEOs), starting in October, when there exists sound reasons for not releasing them into the environment.

Government support for biotechnology corporations is contrary to the majority of New Zealand farmers and public, and to sound scientific practice.

The genetic engineering biotechnology bubble has burst and at considerable cost in the main producing countries: the USA, Canada, Argentina and China. Yet the New Zealand government continues to meet the demands of the industry.

The New Organisms Bill implements the most questionable of all of the Royal Commission's recommendations. There is no solution to coexistence of crops. The problem of liability has been virtually ignored. No good economic reasons have been established for implementing the release. The allowance of "conditional release" is devious because government admit the conditions imposed on release may fail, but there will be no liability for that failure.

Release of GEOs will cost NZ, environmentally and economically. PSRG, along with the British Medical Association and others, believe there is ample evidence to indicate that GE crops pose serious risks to health and environment. Government should face this fact.

Keeping GE in the laboratory would save New Zealand the risk.

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