Office of External Affairs
Mountain-Prairie Region

NEWS RELEASE

U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service
Mountain-Prairie Region
134 Union Boulevard
Lakewood, Colorado 80228

Date:  June 8, 2010

Contact: Tom Koerner, Deputy Project Leader

               605-885-6320 Ext. 12

             

U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to Hold Public Meeting to Discuss Use of

Glyphosate-tolerant Corn and Soybeans on National Wildlife Refuge lands in 16 States in the

Service’s Mountain-Prairie and Great Lakes-Big Rivers Regions

                                                                                                    

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is currently evaluating the use of glyphosate-tolerant corn and soybeans for habitat management purposes on National Wildlife Refuge System lands in 16 States in the Service’s Mountain-Prairie and Great Lakes-Big Rivers Regions.  Glyphosate-tolerant (“Roundup Ready”), corn and soybeans have been genetically modified through insertion of a gene which allows the plant to tolerate applications of glyphosate.  When applied to nearly all other species of growing plants, glyphosate kills the plant.  The use of glyphosate-tolerant crops allows for the effective control and elimination of noxious weeds and other undesirable plants prior to the area being reseeded or allowed to revegetate to more desirable species. 

 

Pursuant to the National Environmental Policy Act, the Service will be developing a draft environmental assessment to analyze the potential effects of using glyphosate-tolerant corn and soybeans for habitat management on National Wildlife Refuge System lands. The Service is seeking public input on the environmental assessment issues related to the use of glyphosate-tolerant crops to enhance native grass restoration efforts on National Wildlife Refuge lands throughout the Midwestern United States.

 

A Public Scoping Open House is planned for June 24th at the Flint Hills National Wildlife Refuge Headquarters located 3 blocks west and one block north of the Hartford, Kansas High School.   The Service invites all interested members of the public to visit Refuge Headquarters anytime from 6 to 8PM to get more information or provide comments to the Service. Written comments may be submitted to: Tom Koerner c/o Sand Lake National Wildlife Refuge Complex, 39650 Sand Lake Drive, Columbia SD 57433, or by email at tom_koerner@fws.gov. The closing date for comments is July 9th, 2010. The EA will be available for review in early fall.

 

The mission of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is working with others to conserve, protect and enhance fish, wildlife, plants and their habitats for the continuing benefit of the American people. We are both a leader and trusted partner in fish and wildlife conservation, known for our scientific excellence, stewardship of lands and natural resources, dedicated professionals and commitment to public service. For more information on our work and the people who make it happen, visit www.fws.gov.