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The Cartagena Protocol on Biosafety to the Convention on Biological Diversity

The Cartagena Protocol, in force since September 2003, was adopted as a complementary agreement to the Convention on Biological Diversity. The Protocol seeks to protect biological diversity by managing the movements of Live Modified Organisms resulting from the application of modern technology (LMOs) between countries. It establishes a procedure for prior informed agreement to ensure countries have the necessary information to make decisions about the importing of LMOs into their territory.

Countries

CountryState party since

10/09/2003

15/01/2004

06/09/2002

12/02/2004

22/04/2002

24/11/2003

20/05/2003

06/02/2007

17/09/2002

13/07/2004

20/06/2006

30/01/2003

26/09/2003

05/02/2004

28/10/2004

18/03/2008

18/11/2008

25/09/2012

27/08/2002

28/08/2002

01/05/2002

10/03/2004

14/04/2004

23/05/2001

16/01/2005

27/08/2003

27/03/2008

05/10/2000

02/11/2011

13/05/2002

Highlights

Access to information (articles 20, 21.6 and 23.3)

For the purposes of this Convention, the following information relating to the movement of an LMO shall not be considered confidential: the name and address of the notifier; a general description of the living modified organism or organisms; a summary of the risk assessment of the effects on the  conservation and sustainable use of biological diversity, taking also into account risks to human health; and any methods and plans for emergency response.

A Biosafety Clearing-House is established in order to facilitate the exchange of scientific, technical, environmental and legal information, and experience with LMOs, and assist Parties to implement the Protocol.  Each Party shall endeavor to inform its public about the means of public access to the Biosafety Clearing-House.

Environmental education and public participation (article 23)

The parties shall promote and facilitate public awareness, education and participation concerning the safe transfer, handling and use of LMOs in relation to the conservation and sustainable use of biological diversity, taking also into account risks to human health and including public access to information on LMOs. Furthermore, the Parties shall, in accordance with their respective laws and regulations, consult the public in the decision-making process regarding LMOs organisms and shall make the results of such decisions available to the public.