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Washington State Academy of Sciences Initiatives

Opportunities for Addressing Laminated Root Rot Caused by Phellinus Sulphurascens in Washington's Forests: This report is in response to a request from the Washington State Department of Natural Resources (DNR) to "identify approaches and opportunities ripe for research on understanding and managing root diseases of Douglas-fir."

Similar to the process used by the National Research Council, the WSAS upon agreeing to undertake a project such as requested by the DNR assembles a committee of state, regional, national, and/or international experts, as needed; develops a statement of task to guide the study; conducts the study; and makes recommendations based on the findings. The Committee that conducted this study included federal (both U.S. and Canadian), state, university, and private company representation from Idaho, Oregon, Washington, and British Columbia.

The statement of task based on the DNR request, followed by further discussions with DNR staff, was:

The Committee will determine which among the full complex of forest tree root diseases is best suited for further scientific research toward applied management options, with a focus one request of six legislators, the Washington State Academy of Sciences will provide an independent white paper addressing the science underlying the use of products from genetically modified plants and/or animals in food and the impacts of required labeling of foods containing ingredients from genetically modified plants and/or animals.

Initiative 522-Addressing the labeling of genetically modified foods: At the request of six legislators, the Washington State Academy of Sciences provided an independent white paper addressing the science underlying the use of products from genetically modified plants and/or animals in food and the impacts of required labeling of foods containing ingredients from genetically modified plants and/or animals.

The WSAS has assembled a committee of six experts to address the questions in the Statement of Task (SOT) and provide a summary of the evidence base underlying each of these components. The six have been internally reviewed by the Academy for conflicts of interest that would influence their evaluation of the science.

Puget Sound Partnership effort: The Washington State Legislature has requested the participation of The Washington State Academy of Sciences in the Puget Sound Partnership's (PSP) efforts to protect and restore Puget Sound.