Search BIREA:

View:   long pages · print version

Background information

Guide to key elements of the HSNO Act

Section 36: 'Minimum standards'

The HSNO Act requires that assessment of applications must always take place. In making a decision on new organisms, the Act requires the Authority to consider what could be called an environmental 'bottom line' in the form of minimum standards. These standards are reproduced from the HSNO Act below and it is extremely important that applicants understand and address these standards in the application:

"36. Minimum standards. The Authority shall decline the application, if the new organism is likely to:
(a) Cause any significant displacement of any native species within its natural habitat; or
(b) Cause any significant deterioration of natural habitats; or
(c) Cause any significant adverse effects on human health and safety; or
(d) Cause any significant adverse effect to New Zealand's inherent genetic diversity; or
(e) Cause disease, be parasitic, or become a vector for human, animal, or plant disease, unless the purpose of that importation or release is to import or release an organism to cause disease, be a parasite, or a vector for disease."

For biological control agents, the emphasis is mainly upon (a), (b), and (d).