BIOSAFETY - Scientific Findings and Elements of a Protocol

This report has been prepared by an Independent Group of Scientific and Legal Experts on Biosafety as a contribution to the growing international discussion on the implications of genetic engineering and the need for biosafety policies and regulation.

The Independent Expert Group was set up at the initiative of several environment and development groups concerned about issues relating to safety and ecological aspects of genetic engineering.

This report has been produced in the context of discussions at the Convention on Biological Diversity (under the United Nations) on the need for and modalities of a biosafety protocol.

The members of the Independent Expert Group on Biosafety covers two major areas; a scientific analysis of the potential effects of genetic engineering, based oncurrent and up-to-date findings; and a discussion on the need for and the modalities and elements of a biosafety protocol. It also contains a critique of the Cairo expert report, which is reproduced as an Annex to this report.

Earlier drafts of this report became a crucial input for delegates and NGOs at the meetings under the Convention on Biological Diversity and contributed to the decision of the COP in November 1995 to begin international negotiations on a legally binding biosafety protocol. In 1996, the draft report was revised and the final report is now being published.

It is hoped that this report will contribute to the process of formulating an international biosafety protocol, and also be useful for developing national policies to regulate activities involving genetic engineering.

108 pages

Size: 16.5cm x 24cm

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