What is the issue ?
- A number of scientists have expressed that the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) is hindering biodiversity research and preventing international collaborations due to regulations that have risen due to its implementation
About the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) :
The Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD), known informally as the Biodiversity Convention, is a multilateral treaty.
The Convention has three main goals including: the conservation of biological diversity (or biodiversity); the sustainable use of its components; and the fair and equitable sharing of benefits arising from genetic resources.
Its objective is to develop national strategies for the conservation and sustainable use of biological diversity. It is often seen as the key document regarding sustainable development.
The Convention was opened for signature at the Earth Summit in Rio de Janeiro on 5 June 1992 and entered into force on 29 December 1993.
At the 2010 10th Conference of Parties (COP) to the Convention on Biological Diversity in October in Nagoya, Japan, the Nagoya Protocol was adopted.
India is one of the 196 countries that has committed to the CBD and ratified it in February 1994.
USA has not yet ratified the CBD treaty.
What is the issue that scientists have raised ?
- Scientists have found the 'fair and equitable sharing of benefits arising from genetic resources' clause of the CBD to be problematic
- Due to national level legislations instituted by countries under the CBD, obtaining field permits for access to specimens for non-commercial research has become increasingly difficult.
What is the way forward ?
- The International Treaty on Plant Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture or the “Seed Treaty”, which ensures worldwide public accessibility of genetic resources of essential food and fodder, could be used as a model for exchange of biological materials for non-commercial research.
- Another solution may be to add an explicit treaty or annex in the CBD to promote and facilitate biodiversity research, conservation, and international collaboration