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Annual report marks "watershed year"

13 October 2005

Annual report marks "watershed year"

Manaaki Whenua - Landcare Research has released its 2005 Annual Report, highlighting a year of change. This, the Crown Research Institute's fifth sustainability report, summarises its financial, environmental and social performance.

The report introduces Dr Warren Parker, the newly appointed Chief Executive, and pays tribute to Dr Andy Pearce, who resigned after 13 years at the helm. Manaaki Whenua Board Chairman Rob Fenwick marks the shift to more devolved funding as another significant change.

By year's end however, the company had secured more than half its core research revenue from the Foundation for Research, Science and Technology (FRST), under new, longer-term contracts. Gross revenue was $48 million.

The very comprehensive 76-page report includes science summaries of key issues such as dating the arrival of humans in New Zealand, and environmental risks of GM crops. Other highlights include the development of a weka-proof possum trap, a possum fertility control vaccine and a rat-specific poison. There were advances in research on avian malaria, invasive ants, endocrine-disrupting chemicals in effluent, soil mapping, understanding greenhouse gas emissions, and more sustainable urban development.

Manaaki Whenua staff are also world leaders in publication productivity. On average, each scientist published 1.5 articles in international scientific journals.

The numerous professional awards received by staff are also profiled in the report. Manaaki Whenua's new sustainable building on Auckland University's Tamaki Campus won the Ministry for the Environment's Green Ribbon Award for urban environmental management, and the EECA EnergyWise Commercial Building Award at the Property Council of New Zealand Awards.

Last year's Annual Report received awards from the Institute of Chartered Accountants of New Zealand (ICANZ) and the Australian Annual Reporting Awards (ARA). Manaaki Whenua's Annual Reports are printed with vegetable inks on 100% recycled paper manufactured using wind power. Those wanting to avoid the use of paper altogether can view the report and supporting information on the website: www.landcareresearch.co.nz/publications/annualreport_0405/

ENDS

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