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Greens slam CSIRO funding cuts

It is a foolish time to cut funding to agricultural research, Australian Greens Agriculture spokesperson Senator Rachel Siewert said today.

"It is foolish to cut funding for agricultural research when the industry is facing arguably its biggest challenge - adapting to climate change," Senator Siewert said.

"Now is the time we should be doubling our efforts to help rural communities and boosting our research capability."

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Greens support NT teachers' industrial action

Australian Greens Senator Rachel Siewert made a strong statement of support in Alice Springs today for industrial action being taken by teachers in the Northern Territory.

"The legitimate efforts of teachers in the NT to negotiate for fairer work conditions are currently being hampered by an uncooperative NT Labor Government," said Senator Siewert.

Teachers in the NT recently took industrial action after the Commissioner for Public Employment again failed to deliver an offer that would guarantee teachers equitable pay and conditions.

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GM ban lift threatens markets - Greens

"The lifting of bans on Genetically Modified crops today in Victoria and New South Wales will threaten Australia's clean green reputation and cost farmers huge amounts of money," said Senator Rachel Siewert.

"The evidence from the Gene Technology Regulator last week in Senate Estimates indicated very clearly that there was not a national segregation system in place and farmers and consumers would be left to pay the price of contamination."

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Holes evident in GM legislation

"Regulation of GM in this country is grossly inadequate and highlights why it is so important to maintain the moratorium on GM crops," said Australian Greens spokesperson Senator Rachel Siewert.

"There is no regulation in place to deal with the issues of contamination, segregation and marketing of GM and non-GM crops. This issue is about to come to a head with the overturning of the moratorium on GM canola by NSW and Victoria."

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NT intervention failing Indigenous education

"The release of the latest figures today on Indigenous education highlights the need for a radical change of strategy to tackle this pressing problem," said Senator Rachel Siewert today.

The Australian Education Union report was commissioned to examine the impact of the federal intervention in Aboriginal communities. The report indicates that almost two billion dollars is needed to ensure Aboriginal students in the Northern Territory have the same opportunities as students in the rest of Australia.

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PM's comments undermine Australian research

The Greens are calling on the Prime Minister to clearly state the government's policy on research independence and stakeholder funding.


"This government has systematically re-focused the priorities of Australian research over the last decade by requiring research organisations, including CSIRO, Cooperative Research Centres and Universities, to 'leverage' an increasing portion of their research funding from industry stakeholders," said Senator Rachel Siewert today.

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GM report ignores real costs

"The costs of lifting the moratorium on GM crops far outweigh the benefits," said Greens' spokesperson on Agriculture Senator Rachel Siewert today.


The Minister for Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry Peter McGauran has stated that a new report GM Canola - an information package adds weight to the argument that State Governments should immediately lift their moratoriums on GM crops.

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A GE Cure Worse than the Disease

The Australian Greens do not support the introduction of these specific emergency dealing provisions. We have serious concerns about their implications. We may be putting in place a cure that is far worse than the disease or the original problem. The Greens, as many people will know, have some very strong concerns with genetic engineering and its implications for our environment and human health.

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