The Church Environmental Network, representing members of the Anglican church, has spoken out against the government's backing of genetically modified organisms (GMOs).

Bishop Geoff Davies, chairperson of the network, said it was disturbing that the government had given strict instructions to its delegates at the World Conservation Union congress to vote against the call to halt further releases of genetically modified organisms.

"The GMO issue is not only about untested technology, but the further economic enslavement of the poor to multi-national corporations and the extraordinary lack of transparency characterising the whole debate," Davies said.

The organisation regarded the government's stance on GMOs as an example of putting political expediency ahead of morality when making crucial decisions on the environment.

Davies said the organisation felt as if it were "engaged in a battle" with the Department of Environment Affairs and Tourism over unresolved issues. Others included nuclear energy, the Wild Coast toll road and the environmental impact of the Coega port. -Environment writer