Biotech Guidelines Challenged by Rifkin
The Administration's proposed regulatory policy on biotechnology is the subject of a new lawsuit filed by activist Jeremy Rifkin and of a congressional hearing to be held on i3 July.
The policy, which was published in the Federal Register on 26 June, is now being circulated for public comment. The scientific basis of the policy is being challenged by Rifkin and will be examined at the hearing, which will be held jointly by three subcommittees of the House Science and technology Committee. The detailed policy proposes how certain modified organisms will be regulated and says, for example, that a harmless microbe that has been modified by the addition of a noncoding regulatory sequence from a pathogenic organism will still be considered nonpathogenic (Science, 6 June, p. 1189).
Rifkin challenges this approach and, on 15 July, sued the federal government over the biotechnology guidelines. He alleges that the agencies involved failed to conduct an...