Moth plant (Araujia sericifera). Photograph: Jeremy Rolfe.
An Unwanted Organism is defined in the Biosecurity Act 1993 as any organism a chief technical officer believes capable of causing unwanted harm to any natural and physical resources or human health.
It also includes any new organism the Environmental Risk Management Authority (ERMA) has declined approval to import, or any organism specified in the Second Schedule of the Hazardous Substances and New Organisms Act 1996.
The Ministry for Primary Industries (MPI), or another government department, has no obligation to act against an unwanted organism simply because it has that status, MPI must be satisfied that goods or organisms given biosecurity clearance show no signs of harbouring unwanted organisms. It is an offence to breed, knowingly communicate, exhibit, multiply, propagate, release, or sell, an unwanted organism, unless permission is obtained from a chief technical officer.
For more information about Unwanted Organisms see*:
Mile-a-minute (Dipognon lignosus). Photographer: Jeremy Rolfe.
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