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Question 2: What are some concrete examples, besides the intrinsic value, of the value of biological diversity to indigenous and local communities? How are they linked to possible socio economic effects of LMOs? How can an effect, if any, be assessed?

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Opening of discussions on question 2 [#6621]
Welcome to this week’s discussion group on socio-economic considerations and the value of biological diversity to indigenous and local communities.

The guiding questions under this topic are: What are some concrete examples, besides the intrinsic value, of the value of biological diversity to indigenous and local communities? How are they linked to possible socio economic effects of LMOs? How can an effect, if any, be assessed?

The discussions this week will be moderated by Martha Elva Germán Sánchez. Comments may be posted until next Monday, 13 April, at 1:00pm GMT. 

We encourage you to continue to participate actively.
posted on 2015-04-06 13:22 UTC by Ms. Paola Scarone, Secretariat of the Convention on Biological Diversity
RE: Opening of discussions on question 2 [#6622]
Dear colleagues,

Welcome to our second round of discussions. As you know, this week we are discussing about a specific component identified in paragraph  5 (b) of decision BS-VII/13: "socio-economic considerations and the value of biological diversity to indigenous and local communities". It is an honor for me have been selected to be moderator on this topic.

The Secretariat, in the spirit to facilitate the discussion, elaborated three guiding questions:

-What are some concrete examples, besides the intrinsic value, of the value of biological diversity to indigenous and local communities?
-How are they linked to possible socio economic effects of LMOs?
-How can effect, if any, be assessed?

Please, try to respond these questions holistically. The ATHEG needs to have, not only clarity on conceptual approach, but also on the "how" the Parties could work on it.

Looking forward to a lively discussion.

Best regards.

Martha
posted on 2015-04-06 13:26 UTC by Bs Martha Germán Sánchez, Secretariat of Economy
RE: Opening of discussions on question 2 [#6624]
Dear Colleagues,

In collaboration with my colleagues Karinne Ludlow and Jose Falck-Zepeda, early last year, we published a book by Springer, on exactly this issue. How to undertake methodology assessments on various SEC factors. If interested, here is a link to the book: http://www.springer.com/gp/book/9781461494393 

As experts on the broader topic of how SECs impede innovation, we sought experts on specific SEC factors and invited them to write a chapter. Each chapter has an identical structure, in that the author was required to:
1. provide the relevance for including the factor as part of a SEC assessment
2. discuss the methodologies available to undertake any assessment of that factor
3. provide a critical assessment of the methodologies available
4. discuss what international obligations exist regarding that factor
5. what administrative (regulatory) requirements would exist from this SEC assessment  

Chapter 10 is an assessment of LMO Impacts on Biodiversity. The chapter is co-authored by Jose Falck-Zepeda, Patricia Zambranon and Melinda Smale. The authors identify that an ecosystem services and assessment provides useful insights into what is a challenging multi-faceted issue. The authors discuss 3 methodologies for assessing biodiversity:
1. ecosystems services evaluation that assigns values to specific ecosystem components.
2. measuring taxonomic diversity over space and/or time.
3. providing an economic value to taxonomic diversity.

In the critical assessment, the authors identify that "Any study will be by nature incomplete as we have neither comprehensive data (economic and biophysical) nor sufficiently mature tools to examine the full value of biodiversity and ecosystem services."

The chapter concludes by observing that "Robust estimates of biodiversity value are quite valuable for decision-making but are currently hampered by the available research methods that require further refinement."

An additional observation to this is the complete lack of benchmarking ability. Any time an assessment is conducted, it is only possible to determine if things are changing for the better, or the worse, is to be able to compare the current assessment to previous thorough assessments. The lack of biodiversity benchmark information, makes the inclusion of a SEC factor on biodiversity extremely perilous for nations considering such inclusion.

I hope this brief summary is of use to the other participants and if any of you have further questions on this chapter, I am more than happy to respond as best I can.

Sincerely,
Stuart Smyth
posted on 2015-04-08 15:53 UTC by Dr. Stuart Smyth, University of Saskatchewan
RE: Opening of discussions on question 2 [#6625]
Colleagues--

I find the  statement by Prof Smyth that "SECs impede innovation" highly biased. How can we approach this serious topic from such a distorted perspective?

Why not start by saying that "SECs, by using rational methodologies, avoid calamities"? Do we build bridges without stress testing (to avoid the SEC of death and destruction in case of collapse)?

The whole WTO, which Smyth argued last week was to be ascendent among international agreements, is nothing more than an SEC--considering the economic impacts (and to very limited, powerful, actors) of state regulation, etc.

The inclusion of SECs in a Protocol assessment is to allow the interests of the less powerful, and the flora and fauna, to also be taken into account.

Phil Bereano
posted on 2015-04-08 16:06 UTC by Dr. Philip L. Bereano, University of Washington
RE: Opening of discussions on question 2 [#6626]
Apologies for another post.

I meant to add that, of course, social and economic considerations have STIMULATED  innovation in many, many cases--eg, airbags in cars, fire retardant fabrics, etc  (I could list dozens of examples).  These innovations have made lots of money also, BTW.
posted on 2015-04-08 16:12 UTC by Dr. Philip L. Bereano, University of Washington
RE: Opening of discussions on question 2 [#6627]
Dear colleagues,

Your contributions to date are extremely valuable; however, in the spirit of advancing and adding, I encourage, as far as possible, that we focus on the issue before us: SEC and the value of biological diversity to Indigenous and Local communities.

My intervention is not intended to restrict the discussion in the forum, but we must take into account that we have limited time and a specific task to work on to contribute to the work of the AHTEG.

I kindly remind you of the additional note relevant to this guiding question. Art. 26 of the Protocol refers specifically to indigenous and local communities. Therefore, it is important to identify and discuss possible effects on these communities with special emphasis on the value of biological diversity to them. In the previous forum on socio-economic considerations (question 3 – 2013 forum), the focus was on possibilities for measuring such effects. However, at COP-MOP 7 (decision BS-VII/13) there was a strong feeling that more work is needed on the identification of links between possible socio economic effects and the value of biodiversity to indigenous and local communities.

Thank you very much for your understanding. Best regards.

Matha
(edited on 2015-04-08 18:17 UTC by Bs Martha Germán Sánchez)
posted on 2015-04-08 18:09 UTC by Bs Martha Germán Sánchez, Secretariat of Economy
RE: Opening of discussions on question 2 [#6630]
Dear All

Can I be guided as to the definition of indigenous and local communities, please? Indigenous I can more or less understand, but local communities seems to be very broad.  I'd appreciate some guidance here...

Ben Durham
posted on 2015-04-09 13:45 UTC by Mr. Ben David Durham, South Africa
RE: Opening of discussions on question 2 [#6631]
Dear All

In South Africa, 'indigenous and local communities' may derive value from biological diversity in a number of ways, including mainly: (1) food / nutrition (plants and animals), (2) housing/building materials, (3) plant/microbe derived medicines, infusions, health teas etc.  More indirectly, but no less importantly, there is (4) feed for domestic animals, (5) aesthetics, (6) shelter, etc.

Disruption to biodiversity by LMO's may, in such cases, affect the value communities derive from the biodiversity.  However, it needs to be noted that all the above activities (and many, many others, including human-induced climate change) often have a direct and significant impact on biodiversity (i.e. without the complication of LMOs).  In the case of a developing economy, surely national strategy / policy must define the balance between resources from the 'wild', and developing livelihoods? 

We have - in SA - various forms of protection which vary between permits for local community harvesting, and outright protection.  Regulators are unlikely to permit a LMO for general release unless the environmental impact is considered unlikely and negligible.  This mitigates the need for examining socio-economics of LMO impacts on biodiversity (noting that we do also consider direct impacts of LMO's on society).

Ben
posted on 2015-04-09 14:47 UTC by Mr. Ben David Durham, South Africa
RE: Opening of discussions on question 2 [#6632]
I support Ben Durham’s request to define local and indigenous communities in the context of Article 26. I would add other definitions to clearly frame the concept and to devise a pathway for countries to pursue as a roadmap for implementation.

Can we define which biodiversity are we talking about? Agricultural biodiversity? Overall biodiversity? Both? As was mentioned by my colleague Stuart Smyth and as was included in the book we edited with Karinne Ludlow (http://www.springer.com/gp/book/9781461494393 ), this question is quite relevant as the methods used for assessing both options, can be and are different. Furthermore, the degree of evolution of the assessment methods for both options can vary.

We also need to define which relevant local and indigenous communities should be considered in the decision making process. Are we talking about those whose valued biodiversity will be directly affected by the introduction of an LMO? Or would it be a more conceptual understanding where biodiversity has an intrinsic (perhaps sacred) value to local and indigenous communities, and any intervention (does not really matter) may affect such perception of value regardless of whether they are directly affected by the introduction of an LMO? For implementation purposes, these are two difference scenarios.

I presume this will also assume that this also implies that we need to carefully define the impact pathway itself. Presumably we will be able to trace from cause (introduction of an LMO) to effect (purported impacts on biodiversity) to socioeconomic considerations associated with such biodiversity impacts. This of course can be from a linear to a non-linear pathways to describe causality. This would also point out to the need of defining a biodiversity baseline in order to properly measure changes and impacts. This approach by the way, seems in my opinion to be consistent with the application of the Nagoya-Kuala Lumpur Supplemental Protocol on Liability and Reddress.

We further need to carefully separate those impacts of local and indigenous communities that are due to the LMO, from those that would have happened with any other non-regulated article, such as conventional hybrids or improved varieties. I presume that most regulatory systems will likely concentrate on how LMOs are different from non-regulated technologies. 

Finally, we need to carefully consider all the potential impacts from the implementation of biosafety regulations in society, and not only of the potential introduction of an LMO. Regulatory Impact Assessment is indeed part of any functional biosafety system and should be the basis for understanding the consequences from regulations. Indeed, regulations can have both positive and negative impacts.  One which is quite important is indeed the impact on innovation. This should not be discounted and is part of many governance and regulatory systems around the world.
posted on 2015-04-09 14:53 UTC by Dr. Jose Falck-Zepeda, International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI)
RE: Opening of discussions on question 2 [#6633]
Thank you Ben Durham for an interesting description of the elements in the current South African approach. I believe, one characteristic derived from the SA approach, that has quite a bit of value for other countries, is the possibility of having graduated and increasingly complex approaches to evaluation and assessment of the relationship between the value of biodiversity to local and indigenous communities and socioeconomic considerations.

This graduated approach, starting perhaps from a determination of no significant impact all the way to those that may require a more in-depth assessment when relevant, may be quite useful to many regulatory systems around the world. This will reconnect back the implementation of the regulations commensurate to the level of risk (or lack thereof).

For example, if an LMO is introduced in a crop that is not indigenous to a country (say maize in Eastern Africa) and it is not a center of origin or diversity, and the planned introduction is in hybrids in maize, there may not be the need to have a full blown socioeconomic assessment done in country. Evaluating whether a statement of no significant impact would suffice, will likely be tied to the environmental and food/feed safety assessment which may be part of the biosafety approach pursued in the country anyhow.

Finding a way to support those countries who have already have included socioeconomic considerations in their domestic measures, in finding an implementation approach that supports a functional biosafety system is extremely important in my opinion. This of course would need to be one that is feasible, time and cost efficient, fair, transparent, commensurate to risk and so on...
posted on 2015-04-09 15:24 UTC by Dr. Jose Falck-Zepeda, International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI)
RE: Opening of discussions on question 2 [#6634]
Dear Ben!
I think we have briefly discussed that issue in the previous online Forum, where you also raised this issue. Here is the link:
http://bch.cbd.int/onlineconferences/portal_art26/se_forum_discussiongroups_2013-2014.shtml?threadid=4630

I have had another look into that recently, but did not came accross a better definition than the one I posted last time provided by IUCN:

With regard to indigenous people this publication makes reference to the ILO Convention, which has already been done by other colleagues in this forum.
However, there is also a description of local communities. I just want to pick out the main elements:
• A community is a human group sharing a territory and involved in different but related aspects of livelihoods—such as managing natural resources, producing knowledge and culture, and developing productive technologies and practices
• The members of a “local community” are those people that are likely to have face-to-face encounters and/or direct mutual influences in their daily life. In this sense, a rural village, a clan or the inhabitants of an urban neighborhood can be considered a “local community”
• Their members share in varying degrees political, economic, social and cultural characteristics (in particular language, behavioral norms, values, aspirations, …

I guess this is an important point, as in contrary to “indigenous peoples”, which is clearly linked to the developing world, “local communities” is also applicable for industrialized countries.

Here is also the reference:
Reference:
Borrini-Feyerabend, G., Kothari, A. and Oviedo, G. (2004). Indigenous and
Local Communities and Protected Areas: Towards Equity and Enhanced
Conservation. IUCN, Gland, Switzerland and Cambridge, UK. xviii + 111pp. http://cmsdata.iucn.org/downloads/pag_011.pdf

Hope that helps

Andreas
posted on 2015-04-09 15:34 UTC by Dr. Andreas Heissenberger, Austria
RE: Opening of discussions on question 2 [#6635]
Brazilian legislation defines local communities as: single cultural group that does recognize themselves as such. They also have their own social organization; they occupy and use territories (land) and natural resources as a way to keep and promote their cultural, social, religious, ancestral and economic values, by using their knowledge, innovation and practices that is generated and transmitted   by tradition.

And just to clarify in Portuguese we call them as peoples and traditional comminutes not local communities. And peoples and traditional comminutes and indigenous peoples are inside Brazilian concept of Family farmer.
posted on 2015-04-09 18:59 UTC by Ms. Carolina Rizzi Starr, Brazil
RE: Opening of discussions on question 2 [#6636]
Dear Matha,

Your response captures the challenge in discussing this aspect of SECs, there is simply a lack of high quality, peer reviewed scientific information available on this issue. Much of the discourse on the topic of biodiversity values and genetic resources to indigenous populations is contained within the traditional knowledge literature. There has been considerable scholarly work on this subject, much of it from the legal scholar community. This literature is predominantly normative in nature and does not engage in dialogue about ways to confirm and validate models, method and metrics that can be relied upon to deal with claims and disputes about traditional knowledge (TK) and access and benefits sharing (ABS).

The book by Karinne Ludlow, Jose Falck-Zepeda and myself does contribute to this assessment with a chapter on traditional knowledge by Peter Phillips. Phillips identifies part of the problem as a lack of definition for TK and ABS as neither the CBD nor the Rio Declaration provide a definition of benefits, with these two conventions being the launching point for most of the discussion on the topic. One challenge of identifying the value of biodiversity to indigenous populations is that this knowledge is not codified, but rather it is frequently tacit and context laden and known only by a limited group within any particular community. Frequently this discussion is embedded within the context of extending intellectual property rights, but that may not be the most valuable comparison within the context of this specific discussion.

A further example within our book can be found in the chapter by Alexandra Coe, who wrote on 'Culture and Religion'. She examines the case of why GM papaya were successfully accepted and adopted by Hawaiian farmers, yet GM taro was rejected.

One of the challenges is the lack of a framework to ensure that the evaluation of biodiversity or the value of it to any specified group of individuals. I would suggest that the question be framed as determining the value of access to biodiversity, as opposed to the value of biodiversity that surrounds a particular community. Access to a local biosphere is what will have value and is where the valuation debate might be able to focus.

A framework that values this could include access as either legal or non-legal on one side of a matrix, with benefits sharing as either commercial or non-commercial on the other. This 2x2 matrix would allow for a better conceptualization of those aspects that can be more formally defined, those that are legal and commercial, while those that are non-legal and non-commercial would require additional debate and discussion on valuation.

This is an interesting and challenging issue and I hope that this post contributes to the information you are anticipating.

Cheers,
Stuart Smyth
posted on 2015-04-09 19:14 UTC by Dr. Stuart Smyth, University of Saskatchewan
RE: Opening of discussions on question 2 [#6637]
About some concrete SEC that impact indigenous people and local communities, I started a list of problems we have in Brazil now. We have a very transparent and accurate risk assessment process but by ours legislations we don’t need to realize SEC analyses. And after 10 years of release OGM on the environment and commercial approving we have some problems, most of them related with SEC

1. Concentration on Seed value chain  -  today the seeds sector in Brazil are dominate for  2 companies, Monsanto and Syngenta. They have most of OGM seeds approval in Brazil. The socioeconomic problem on that is that you don’t have option to choose the seed you wanna use. And more than that, day after day we have a more narrowed genetic base for the seeds and that create a less resilience system. This situation impact on the right of farmer, indigenous and local communities to choose the seeds they wanna buy. 

2. Contamination or adventitious presence - other SEC issue is adventitious presence or low level presence. Sometimes we can find a different event on a crops that by pollination came from another crop. This can cause export problems, as FAO are evaluation by the GM foods Platform. But specifically for farmer, indigenous and local community, we have identified sometime OGM traits on landrace seeds. This is a SE problem. For farmer, indigenous and local communities this problem is a contamination because this trait is not something that there are expecting, and this can change their seeds. For corn this is a big issue.

3. Health problems association with the increase use of pesticide – in Brazil we are watching an exponential increase on pesticide use. Most of them are associated with GMO technologies, like glyphosate. So by the risk assessment he GMO we use in Brazil are safe, but they are helping the increase of use of pesticides. This promotes impact for farmer, indigenous and local communities like land and water contamination, these contaminations are associated with health problems like allergies, intoxications. Another problem associated with the increase use of pesticides is to get organic certification. If you have a neighbor that use a lot of pesticides your land and water will have traits of these pesticides and you can’t get an organic certification, this is a SEC. the organic food has a more add value and can help farmer, indigenous and local communities to have more incomes.

4. Arising of resistant weeds – today in Brazil we have weeds that are completely glyphosate resistant, that why we are approving 2,4D resistant technologies. Because glyphosate doesn’t work in the field any more. We belief that the risk assessment for this new technologies it is ok, but we are promote the use of a very toxic substance. This is a SEC, the OMG technologies is safety, but the 2,4D is very toxic and we with increase its use in all country. As I exposed in topic 3, this is associate with many problems and is a SEC.

I think we have here 4 strong cases that represent how important is to take into account SEC for the approval of GMO technologies and how it is related farmer, indigenous and local community
posted on 2015-04-09 21:07 UTC by Ms. Carolina Rizzi Starr, Brazil
RE: Opening of discussions on question 2 [#6639]
Dear all,
In respect to the rounds of discussion under the question 1 and 2, I would like additionally to mention the relevancy of the Convention on Environmental Impact Assessment in a Transboundary Context (Espoo, 1991) - the 'Espoo (EIA) Convention', and its articles 4, 5, 9 and its Appendixes II, III,VI.

A general impact assessment in the context of transboundary impact is very much closed to the LMOs SEC issues, and are related to the  on socio-economic considerations and the value of biological diversity to indigenous and local communities. The Convention give us a relevant approach and instumentarium for EIA,  including the research and methodological approach and also the administrative arrangements for reporting and decision making. The general approach for EIA requires development of research programmes aimed at:
…(a) Improving existing qualitative and quantitative methods for assessing the impacts of proposed activities;
(b) Achieving a better understanding of cause-effect relationships and their role in integrated environmental management;
(c) Analysing and monitoring the efficient implementation of decisions on proposed activities with the intention of minimizing or preventing impacts;
(d) Developing methods to stimulate creative approaches in the search for environmentally sound alternatives to proposed activities, production and consumption patterns;
(e) Developing methodologies for the application of the principles of environmental impact assessment at the macro-economic level…
The Appendix II is describes the content of the environmental impact assessment   and specifies the following:
…(d) A description of the potential environmental impact of the proposed activity and its alternatives and an estimation of its significance;
(e) A description of mitigation measures to keep adverse environmental impact to a minimum;
(f) An explicit indication of predictive methods and underlying assumptions as well as the relevant environmental data used;
(g) An identification of gaps in knowledge and uncertainties encountered in compiling the required information;
(h) Where appropriate, an outline for monitoring and management programmes and any plans for post-project analysis;…

Under the APPENDIX III,  the consideration on the significancy  of the adverse transboundary impact  isw estimated by some clear criteria, as (c) Effects: proposed activities with particularly complex and potentially adverse effects, including those giving rise to serious effects on humans or on valued species or organisms, those which threaten the existing or potential use of an affected area and those causing additional loading which cannot be sustained by the carrying capacity of the environment.

A possible avers impact from LMOs to the biodiversity and local communities may result as direct factors and also indirect as being a factor that increase the climate change effects, reduction of ecosystem services and degradation of natural ecosystems and biodiversity.

The methodology of analysis of the possible negative factors should include populational, biogeographical, and ecological data analysis that can be associated with the analysis on impact on traditional agriculture, trade and local market system, educational and religious factors.

Angela
posted on 2015-04-10 10:34 UTC by Ms. Angela Lozan, Republic of Moldova
RE: Opening of discussions on question 2 [#6640]
Many thanks to Andreas and Carolina for providing some clarity on 'indigenous and local communities'. 

1) I am of the view - like Jose - that we need to formalize this definition somewhat.  I think, then, we are excluding special interest groups (?), and focusing on communities where members are geographically co-located, identify themselves as a community AND have some direct link with environmental / agricultural biodiversity? This should be clarified/agreed upon in order to be sure we have a common understanding.

2) Very useful posting by Carolina on some of the Brazilian experiences with SE.  I will share  an experience from SA in a next posting.  However, it needs to be noted that (in my opinion) Carolina's points (1) (Seed value chain) and possibly (2) (adventitious presence) are socio-economic issues that do NOT arise from impacts to biological diversity -in other words do not fall under article 26.  (They rather are direct impacts of LMO's.)

This is not to say that they should not be considered, but that they are not biodiversity related - i.e. the focus of the CBD / Cartagena Protocol - and therefore should not be considered under article 26.

Any differing opinions?

Ben
posted on 2015-04-10 11:37 UTC by Mr. Ben David Durham, South Africa
RE: Opening of discussions on question 2 [#6650]
I would suggest that, legally as well as culturally, the definitions should be decided on by the country of import doing the assessment.  (Of course,, the indiginous group of local community should have a major role in this determination, but when is that a matter of international law?)

There is no logical or legal reason why these definitions should be identical in all countries and all cultures, is there?  What interest does a foreign country (or its industries) have in a nation's definitions of these terms (absence negative human rights implications)?

I ask these questions as questions, not as rhetorical statements.
posted on 2015-04-12 01:06 UTC by Dr. Philip L. Bereano, University of Washington
RE: Opening of discussions on question 2 [#6660]
Many thanks, Philip (and others discussing definitions of 'local communities'). 

While Article 26 is voluntary, and countries may in any case impose conditions more stringent than the Protocol (and hence you would probably be right that national sovereignty trumps anything else), I think that we should provide some parameters of a definition to assist in understanding (i.e. conceptual clarity). 

Regulation (in general) that is unclear is very problematic, as it allows differing perspectives to be entertained and leads to (costly, and possibly uninformed) legal/court resolutions.  As a developing economy that has adopted some LMO's, SA would want as much clarity as possible to assist with transboundary movements (i.e. trade).

So perhaps not a full definition, but some parameters of a definition?

Ben
posted on 2015-04-13 11:56 UTC by Mr. Ben David Durham, South Africa
RE: Opening of discussions on question 2 [#6641]
The scenario for a plan for analysis of socioeconomic issues necessarily permeates two important points: the scientific and legal basis. For example, in Brazil we have the legal framework:
1 - a law prohibiting the planting of genetically modified organisms on indigenous lands (Law 11460/07).
2 - A specific law for seeds and seedlings that allows the plant variety protection and at the same time allows the farmer to use any seeds for their livelihoods (Law 10711/03).
3 - A specific law on biosafety that created a scientific commission to GMO risk assessment and a high-level government body that specifically analyzes the socio-economic considerations and that manifests itself every commercial approval of a genetically modified organism (Law 11.105 / 05).
4 - specific laws for agrochemical analysis, where three ministries participate in the risk assessment of these substances and determine the conditions for their use (Law 7802/89).
5 - Specific regulations for coexistence of GM maize fields and conventional (RN04 / 08 - CTNBio).
6 - A specific law for organic production (Law 10,831 / 03)

This legislative scenario allowed real examples of socio economic impact such as:
1 - Free seed market, where the farmer can choose which system of cultivation he has affinity (organic, traditional, biotech, bio, etc.).
2 - for example, the adoption of Bt corn brought GDP growth, exports and
household consumption, but were more evident in the sectors and regions directly related to the corn supply chain, such as animal husbandry and meat, located mostly in the south of the country (Impactos Econômicos da Introdução do Milho Bt11 no Brasil: uma abordagem de equilíbrio geral inter-regional. Pavão. A.R; Filho J. B. S. F - Rev. Econ. Sociol.  Rural vol.49 no.1 Brasília Jan./Mar. 2011).

3 - Increase in the rate of adoption of GM crops over the years, compared to the value of this technology for agricultural management, since it is clear that the final product yield increase, reduction in production cost and indirect factors such as ease of handling and quietness contribute in increasing adoption found in recent years (http://celeres.com.br/wordpress/wp-content/uploads/2013/12/IB13021.pdf).

4 - The herbicide tolerance technologies allowed Brazil to increase its area with the conservation soil technique called “plantio direto”, which contributes significantly to reducing the problems caused by the traditional form of soil management, promoting low-carbon, setting the man in the field, increasing the quality of soil and water. In economic terms, promotes increased productivity and stabilization of production in most of Brazil (http://agrosustentavel.com.br/downloads/sistema_plantio_direto.pdf). As the alleged idea that Brazil consumes a larger volume of pesticides, one must take into account that we have one of the largest agricultural areas of the world, two to three season per year and still use the “plantio direto” system.

5 - Reduction of mycotoxin contamination of maize resistant to insects, which increases the sanitary quality of grain for human consumption, making a much more competitive product on the market (http://www.alice.cnptia.embrapa.br/bitstream /doc/903697/1/Ocorrenciafumonisinas.pdf) (http://www.teses.usp.br/teses/.../42/.../ViniciusdeMoraisBarroso_Mestrado.pdf).

6 - The situations of coexistence between conventional and genetically modified corn is perfectly possible using basic knowledge of biology itself corn and has been identified by experts (http://www.grupocultivar.com.br/site/content/artigos /artigos.php?id=820). In Brazil it is strictly monitored in a scenario where GM corn usage fee is of greater than 80%. Importantly, varieties of corn have been preserved for centuries and situations crossings or mixtures happen by sharing equipment, disregard the distance between crops or intentional seed mixture.
In this scenario of important economic progress, it is essential to emphasize that alleged problems associated with these technologies comes from its management forms (insect resistance, selection of resistant herbs) and not the engineering process. Education in the field should be the SEC most persecuted for countries with a strong agricultural base.
posted on 2015-04-10 13:05 UTC by Dr. Gutemberg Delfino Sousa, Brazil
RE: Opening of discussions on question 2 [#6642]
Just to share a information, yesterday Brazil approved the commercial used for GMO tree. Disrespecting the CBD decision XIII/19 now we can harvest GMO eucalyptus. All the approval process was very controversial but that not the point at this AHTEG. I will focus my position just on the SEC that are related with this approval.

Brazil is the tenth biggest honey export in the world. This value chain involve 500 thousand farmer (almost all family farmers). Brazilian‘s honey is consider a high quality honey and most of them are organic honey. The GMO eucalyptus will impact this production. Most of Brazilian honey  are from eucalyptus and if the tree is GMO, so the pollen is OGM either and by consequence the honey will have GMO traits. This will broke all honey market and Brazil will not be allowed to export this honey for UE, and probably other important markets.

So at this moment doesn’t matters if the OGM eucalyptus is safety, and was approved by following all Brazilian risk assessment process. This technology will cause a SE impact and this should been taking into account during the commercial approval.
posted on 2015-04-10 15:26 UTC by Ms. Carolina Rizzi Starr, Brazil
RE: Opening of discussions on question 2 [#6645]
Excuse me extrapolate the forum scope, further clarifications are needed. During the Conference of the Parties to the Convention on Biological Diversity - COP-9 (decision IX-5), it was agreed between the parties that the use of transgenic trees should be approved after studies based on science, under to the national laws . The Brazil, in this regard, complied with the terms of the agreement, made by field tests and the tests in the laboratory, considering the proposed use of eucalyptus. The commercial process was under review for 1 year and 3 months. Public hearings were made, public consultations and took up a decision based on science. Eucalyptus This was evaluated in controlled trials the field by 7 years.

Another point is to highlight that Brazilian regulations on the production of organic honey are set out in the Regulatory Instructions. 46 of October 6, 2011 and on. 17 June 18, 2014 (MAPA). Article 8., IX of IN 46 is defined as the Organic Management Plan should contain measures for preventing and mitigating the risks of external contamination, including GMO and derivatives. However, IN 17 in the chapter of honey production, in Article 21. item V defines that organic systems of honeybees production should use "only honey bees genetically unmodified".

Referring to the 20th. Edition August 2014 Guidelines for Organic Quality Standard IBD, which is responsible for more than 100 certifications of organic honey producers in items 4.2 and 4.3 sets that can only use the label "IBD CERTIFICATIONS Organic" in their packaging the products contain at least 95% organic agricultural ingredients certificates of origin. There are special labeling conditions for products using in its composition between 95 and 70% of organic raw materials, at least. These products may be printed on the main label the phrase "made with organic ingredients". The Sectorial Committee for Animal Health, the National Organic Standards Board, the body that recommends to the US Department of Agriculture standards to be followed for the production of honey, Document October 27, 2010 does not restrict the use of transgenic material . Approximately 70% of Brazilian honey is exported to the US. Honey is produced by the nectar and pollen can eventually be present in honey in quantities of less than 1%. So the concerns raised are unfounded. As soon be done translation of the technical opinion on the eucalyptus, it is available on the BCH to answer any questions.
(edited on 2015-04-10 18:06 UTC by Dr. Gutemberg Delfino Sousa)
posted on 2015-04-10 18:02 UTC by Dr. Gutemberg Delfino Sousa, Brazil
RE: Opening of discussions on question 2 [#6648]
Q2. What are some concrete examples, besides the intrinsic value, of the value of biological diversity to indigenous and local communities? How are they linked to possible socio economic effects of LMOs? How can an effect, if any, be assessed?
The Mexico comments regarding to the Question 2, where divided according the suggestions of the moderator Martha Elva German, so we answered each question in a separated way as is shown:
1. What are some concrete examples, besides the intrinsic value, of the value of biological diversity to indigenous and local communities?
Mexico is considered Center of Origin and Genetic Diversity of Maize, our country is the ancestral home of this crop, which has a unique and irreplaceable genetic diversity in the varieties known as landraces, with 70 races of maize1, has various production systems from the most technically advanced systems to multi-cropping system called “Milpa” (mixed crops with local varieties, where most communities of our country has a direct relation with the diversity of maize that are the result of years selection and domestication).
Maize is grown from sea level to 2700 mm altitude; in areas with seasonal rainfall regimes from 250 mm in arid zones and almost 3000 mm in the southeast.
The importance of maize is that it provides countless products for human, livestock, aquaculture and food industry, you can make a whole utilization of the plant, the maize is used in more than 600 food recipes from all over the country, the cane was used in construction, for the carving of figures, medicine, wrap, fertilizer, fuel, refreshing and intoxicant drinks; the leaf for whapping tamales, manufactured ceremonial objects as containers or craft and to tie bunches of herbs and spice, the cob, cob heart, fuel, polishing woods and pottery, and as a plug receptacles; grain, for the production of a hundred food and drink that delight the most discerning palate.

2. How are they linked to possible socio economic effects of LMOs?
The races of maize are linked because its wide genetic diversity, ca be an important reservoir for obtaining genes for the developed of new programs of genetic breeding and new varieties improved through the use of biotechnological tools such as molecular markers, tissue culture and genetic engineering. Such is the case of the development of genetically modified corn plants tolerant to drought, generated by the Center for Research and Advanced Studies of the IPN (CINVESTAV) Mexican research institution, whose impacts have been assessed in a first release open field in compliance with the Mexican laws, whose potential impacts can benefit thousands of farmers who plant maize under rainfall conditions that are affected by drought. Such development would include genes isolated from the corn itself and inserted by genetic engineering and more productive homogeneous elite lines.

  http://dof.gob.mx/nota_detalle_popup.php?codigo=5276453

3. How can an effect, if any, be assessed?
This situation will have an economic impact both in the development of new varieties and producers of native maize. However to date in Mexico we have not been conducted assessments of socioeconomic impacts, but there are international methodologies that have been used for this purpose among which include:
• Method of net income
• Method of alternative costs
• Method of shadow prices
• Method of Social Accounting Matrices and multisectoral models2
However, we believe that the methodology used has to be specific and must be designed according to local needs, so it is proposed in this Online Forum to define General Guidelines Reference and in each case the economic model is designed more suitable in accordance with the characteristics of the crop, region and these general guidelines, seeking to find a similarity and assessment methodologies risk of Genetically Modified Organisms (GMOs) to methodically analyze the socioeconomic impacts that may be caused by GMOs in an impartial manner.
posted on 2015-04-10 22:06 UTC by Mr. Belisario Dominguez Mendez, Secretaria de Agricultura, Ganaderia, Desarrollo Rural, Pesca y Alimentación
RE: Opening of discussions on question 2 [#6649]
Q2. What are some concrete examples, besides the intrinsic value, of the value of biological diversity to indigenous and local communities? How are they linked to possible socio economic effects of LMOs? How can an effect, if any, be assessed?
The Mexico comments regarding to the Question 2, where divided according the suggestions of the moderator Martha Elva German, so we answered each question in a separated way as is shown:
1. What are some concrete examples, besides the intrinsic value, of the value of biological diversity to indigenous and local communities?
Mexico is considered Center of Origin and Genetic Diversity of Maize, our country is the ancestral home of this crop, which has a unique and irreplaceable genetic diversity in the varieties known as landraces, with 70 races of maize1, has various production systems from the most technically advanced systems to multi-cropping system called “Milpa” (mixed crops with local varieties, where most communities of our country has a direct relation with the diversity of maize that are the result of years selection and domestication).
Maize is grown from sea level to 2700 mm altitude; in areas with seasonal rainfall regimes from 250 mm in arid zones and almost 3000 mm in the southeast.
The importance of maize is that it provides countless products for human, livestock, aquaculture and food industry, you can make a whole utilization of the plant, the maize is used in more than 600 food recipes from all over the country, the cane was used in construction, for the carving of figures, medicine, wrap, fertilizer, fuel, refreshing and intoxicant drinks; the leaf for whapping tamales, manufactured ceremonial objects as containers or craft and to tie bunches of herbs and spice, the cob, cob heart, fuel, polishing woods and pottery, and as a plug receptacles; grain, for the production of a hundred food and drink that delight the most discerning palate.

2. How are they linked to possible socio economic effects of LMOs?
The races of maize are linked because its wide genetic diversity, ca be an important reservoir for obtaining genes for the developed of new programs of genetic breeding and new varieties improved through the use of biotechnological tools such as molecular markers, tissue culture and genetic engineering. Such is the case of the development of genetically modified corn plants tolerant to drought, generated by the Center for Research and Advanced Studies of the IPN (CINVESTAV) Mexican research institution, whose impacts have been assessed in a first release open field in compliance with the Mexican laws, whose potential impacts can benefit thousands of farmers who plant maize under rainfall conditions that are affected by drought. Such development would include genes isolated from the corn itself and inserted by genetic engineering and more productive homogeneous elite lines.

  http://dof.gob.mx/nota_detalle_popup.php?codigo=5276453

3. How can an effect, if any, be assessed?
This situation will have an economic impact both in the development of new varieties and producers of native maize. However to date in Mexico we have not been conducted assessments of socioeconomic impacts, but there are international methodologies that have been used for this purpose among which include:
• Method of net income
• Method of alternative costs
• Method of shadow prices
• Method of Social Accounting Matrices and multisectoral models2
However, we believe that the methodology used has to be specific and must be designed according to local needs, so it is proposed in this Online Forum to define General Guidelines Reference and in each case the economic model is designed more suitable in accordance with the characteristics of the crop, region and these general guidelines, seeking to find a similarity and assessment methodologies risk of Genetically Modified Organisms (GMOs) to methodically analyze the socioeconomic impacts that may be caused by GMOs in an impartial manner.

P.S. Just comment that the SAGARPA comments were worked between the Ing. Belisario Dominguez Mendez and myself... I hope you don't get confused when you read the same comment double.  Thanks so much.

Marco Caballero
posted on 2015-04-10 22:12 UTC by Mr. Marco Antonio Caballero Garcia, Mexico
RE: Opening of discussions on question 2 [#6651]
Dear All,  
In regard to the rounds of discussion this week, I would like to present a case to answer questions this week, so we called the, “Proposal for introduction of potato transgenic in Center of Origin”
The origin of the potato is the Andean region, and Bolivia is one of the center of origin of potatoes, possesses an enormous genetic diversity; the greatest diversity of potatoes is maintained in the fields of farmers. (Huaman, 1994).
In Bolivia, the genetically modified (GM) potato was rejected, , social organizations called for his no approval arguing it endangers the cultural, traditional, social, economic and political values in interacting relationship of coexistence between man and potato..Farmers, mostly indigenous people, concluded that the GM potato was not capable of replanting  as native potato does, is highly susceptible to change, The damaged product is rejected as food for pigs (while in the case of native potato, farmers feed their pigs with all native potato residues). Moreover, narratives indicate that GM potato could not be preserved to the same extent as native varieties (up to 10 months or more) and was not adequate for processing it as dehydrated potato, or "Chuño" in the native language. This type of potato product retains the potato nutritional properties up to ten or fifteen years, and its a key staple food to highlands native people.
Moreover potato is central in food and production systems in the rural Andes. A farmer typically produces more than a dozen different varieties, each one with a specific purpose, method of preparation, and cultural value.. This variety of potatoes not only pleases the palate, but also allows farmers to select the best varieties adapted to different climates and environments, diseases or pests. (Coca Morante, 2014)

In addition to cultural and traditional settings, some of the native potato varieties also play an important cultural role found in Bolivia, as the very important symbolic value to the lives of people stay, and is one of the pillars of social relationships and respect for Mother Earth. This worldview is reflected in agricultural cultural celebration of the Aymara called “Anata”. This celebration is to give thanks to Mother Earth that helped feed their products to the families of our peoples, so it is a very important ritual in the symbolic level of fertility in both farming, cultural and social .
From this brief descripcion, it is important to note that native potatoes are spread over a number of rural communities of indigenous and local peoples, linked by geography, climate, culture and tradition. This relationship which comes from ancestral times, has made geographical references that over the years came to be called "micro centers of genetic diversity". (Coca Morante, 2014)
Therefore, the introduction and expansion of transgenic potatoes in the center of origin is a threat of genetic contamination and genetic erosion of local biodiversity and specifically for different varieties of native potatoes. The impact of this change, the consequences resulting from this change is drastic and dramatic can be serious for the coexistence of man and the products that nature gives to its development. (Coca Morante, 2014)
posted on 2015-04-12 15:22 UTC by Ms. Sorka Jannet Copa Romero, Bolivia (Plurinational State of)
RE: Opening of discussions on question 2 [#6652]
Dear participants,

I totally agree with Ben Durham´s message about the socio-economic issues that do NOT arise from impacts to biological diversity and do not fall under Art. 26 and also the comment about the necessity to define which relevant local and indigenous communities should be considered.

In this case a concrete example in the context of Art. 26:

- Has to consider the impact of LMOs on biological diversity
- Has to consider relevant international agreements (most of the participants of the previous forum considered the agreements under the WTO which are based on scientifically-based risk assessment)
- Has to define which relevant local and indigenous communities we are taking into consideration in the decision-making process

Well, in this context and making an exercise to provide concrete examples, the first step of a risk assessment procedure is to set the context, and within it, the protection targets in the form of the final evaluation points.

For many of the potential risks already mentioned in past forums (use value, cultural and spiritual value, livelihoods, traditional knowledge) there is no connection to the lost of biological diversity in particular Art. 26 and thus not fit to present a concrete example.

A potential hazard for which it was possible to trace a route to the damage, and the difficulties to accurately demonstrate the elements that compose it was: "the cultivation of Bt maize causing the lost of agricultural diversity" (local and indigenous communities are being called 'small farmers' in the example). In this example we would have the following scenario:

1) The small farmer cultivates Bt maize and landraces next to each other so that there may be pollen flow (the First question is: if the farmer does not have a way to keep the identity of their landraces to avoid the crossing with commercial varieties, wouldn't be already thousands of genes from convencional commercial varieties in this called "landraces?")

2) Occurs pollen flow from Bt corn to landraces (the Second question is: together with the Bt genes thousands of other alleles of conventional commercial varieties wouldn't be also present?)

3) Occurs introgression of these Bt genes in landraces considering that the small farmer will do the selection of stronger corn plants (Third question: genes from conventional commercial varieties wouldn't be selected because it brings more beautiful and productive ears) and less attacked (Fourth question: small farmers already use alternative forms of pest control - would the Bt gene bring any advantage for selection? The manual selection occurs for different characteristics, according to the individual preference of small farmers, would this kind of selection select also the Bt trait ?). There is a propagation of these selected seeds over the generations (Fifth question: If landraces are already crossing with conventional commercial varieties over the time, there isn't already a pool of native + improved genes? What is the damage to this condition due to the presence of Bt genes? );

4) This selection and propagation will lead to lost of agricultural diversity of landraces, (Sixth question: if the landraces are already crossing with the conventional commercial varieties, this is a reliable gene source? The countries do not have germoplasm banks as a reliable source of genes?)

In the worst case scenario we could consider that there was a chance of a damage to occur if all the issues raised can be answered favorably to the situation of "lost of agricultural diversity." If the above example can be specified as a risk, that risk could not be handled? (e.g. adoption of management measures such as education of small farmers about crop management, monitoring of Bt protein in risk areas identified in RA, coexistence rules, Bt corn planting restriction in indigenous areas etc.

Guttemberg at his post also provided some examples of risk management under Brazilian regulations.

Best regards,
Luciana.
posted on 2015-04-12 18:04 UTC by Ms. Luciana Ambrozevicius, Brazil
RE: Opening of discussions on question 2 [#6653]
Dear All,


I commend Martha Elva Germán Sánchez for accepting to moderate this round and for her attempts to ask the participants to stay focused on the questions posed.

Martha, I noted that you almost apologised for asking the participants to stay focused on the questions posed. There is absolutely no need to be apologetic about that, because you were absolutely right in doing so, because several of the posts did – although sometimes with containing very interesting concepts – indeed ventured beyond the questions  and the scope of the CPB.

For online discussions to be of use to the further debate in AHTEGs and MOPs, the inputs should be focused on the questions asked and stay within the objective and scope of the CPB. Likewise the questions themselves should also stay within the objective and scope of the CPB.

The problem with the current questions is that some parts are phrased in a way that may give the impression of not being consistent with the CPB.

For example, the second question is a bit ambiguous in that it speaks possible socio economic effects of LMOs, i.e. it suggests that we are looking at direct SE effects of the introduction of LMOs.

This not what article 26 is about. As Ben Durham rightly pointed out, article 26 addresses socio-economic considerations arising from the impact of LMOs on the conservation and sustainable use of biological diversity (for brevity I refer to this hereafter as “impacts of LMOs on biodiversity)

That particular phrasing was the result of long negotiations. Starting point in that was that the introduction of new technologies very typically have many socio-economic effects, both positive and negative. For example, the introduction of alternative forms of electricity production such as solar and wind energy, will no doubt reduce employment in the coal-fired power plants in one local community. This is unfortunate for those employees, but on the other hand the solar and wind technologies will increase employment in those new areas. Technology development programs in most countries have ways of addressing that kind of potential ‘direct SE effects’.

Yet, this kind of direct SE effects is not what article 26 is about.  Article 26 looks at the special category of SE considerations that is relevant in relation to the CPB, i.e. the SE considerations arising from the impact of LMOs on biodiversity.

A nice example of an indirect socio-economic effect resulting from the impact of an LMO on the environment s that due to the cultivation of GM virus resistant papaya in Hawaii, the number of disease causing viruses in the environment has reduced so dramatically that farmers can now grow even non GM papaya. The post of Gutemberg also gives some nice examples.

In summary, article 26 in methodological terms means that only after an impact on conservation of biodiversity has been established can the question of SEC come into play in decision making.

Yet, many of the positive and adverse SE effects mentioned in the various posts are direct effects and not SE effects resulting from an impact of LMOs on biodiversity.

Following up on the observations made by Luciana Ambrozevicius, I recommend that for the progress in this and next rounds of the discussion, we:
• focus on the SECs mentioned in article 26, i.e. those arising from impacts on biodiversity,
• remember that article 26 talks about SEC in decision making, not in risk assessment,
• bear in mind that article 26 is effectively a reminder of a possibility that countries already had before the adoption of the CPB, and that taking SECs into consideration is a right, not an obligation, and that consequently we are talking about guidance and should avoid  prescriptive  text.

Returning to the questions posed, I believe that Ben Durham gave an excellent start for addressing question 1 about examples of the value of biological diversity to indigenous and local communities, and that it would be worthwhile to further develop the points he made. The methodology in the paper of Smyth, Ludlow and Falck-Zepeda, could be of help in further elaboration.

I also agree with those who asked for the elaboration of some working definition of indigenous and local communities. The IUCN notes quoted by Andreas Heissenberger seem very useful in that respect. The comment in a later post that definitions in this respect should not be a matter of international law shows a poor understanding about the nature of the exercise we are in: we are talking about conceptual clarity and guidance, not about international law.

In response to question 2, i.e. how these biodiversity values can be linked to possible socio economic effects, I would repeat that those links lay in identified impacts of LMOs on those biodiversity values.  It will be important to underline that in the report.

The third question as to how an effect, if any, can be assessed,would logically take as a starting point an identified impact of an LMO on one of the biodiversity values listed above. As Jose Falck rightly pointed out, here it is important to remain focused on the novel characteristics introduced through modern biotechnology. If the resulting LMO is used unwisely, e.g. by overusing herbicides, than any SE effects are the result of the unwise use, not of the LMO. Likewise conventional and organic farming methods can be used wisely and unwisely, such as the case of the organic bean sprouts that caused many people to get seriously ill and even to die. Those effects were the result of the inwise use, not of the fact that the product was organic.

Looking forward to further posts

Piet
posted on 2015-04-12 19:53 UTC by Prof. Piet van der Meer, Ghent University, University of Brussels, Belgium, PRRI
RE: Opening of discussions on question 2 [#6658]
Dear friends

The scope of the discussions pertaining to the question 2 are three issues (i) What are some concrete examples, besides the intrinsic value, of the value of biological diversity to indigenous and local communities? (ii) How are they linked to possible socio economic effects of LMOs?  (iii) How can an effect, if any, be assessed?

My response to part (ii) and (iii):

Linkages between socio-economic effects of LMOs and value of biological diversity
1. There are deep implications between socio-economic effects of LMOs and biological diversity. In-situ conservation i.e., sustaining diversity through cultivation and use may be the most effective means of conservation.
2. However, market mechanisms tend to reward short-term performance on narrow parameters such as yield rather than long-term contributions to sustainability. Therefore, proliferation of LMOs through state-led or market-led mechanisms can lead to an erosion of biodiversity, just as Green Revolution led to an erosion of biodiversity in rice and wheat. This can have major impact on socio-economic considerations for indigenous and local communities, where they may lose their traditional source of food and livelihood.
3. Moreover, the risk of gene flow changing the ecological distribution of biological diversity must be taken note of – especially where the gene in question confers selective advantage to certain varieties over others.
4. Further, climate change has increased the variability and uncertainty in weather patterns. This will also have direct bearing on pest complexes, rainfall, etc. and therefore on the relative performance of LMOs e.g., insect-resistant or drought-resistant LMOs. The efficacy of LMOs will then have to be evaluated with respect to the socio-economic impact of losing biological diversity that may be better adapted to swings in climate and weather. As an illustration, drought-resistant rice LMO may be less useful than a rice variety that can withstand wide variation in water-availability, in areas where climate change leads to extremely low and extremely high rainfall.

Assessment of effects
1. Effects have to be assessed on a case-by-case basis – for different combinations of crop/trait/intended area of application vis-à-vis an LMO in question. For instance, the assessment for herbicide tolerant maize may be very different from that of drought-resistant rice.
2. For this, as a starting point, Members will have to collect and compile baseline information with respect to prevalent agricultural practices and biodiversity, especially among indigenous communities, so that the impact of an LMO can be assessed. The baseline information may include the following parameters as a minimum:
a. Centers of origin and Centers of diversity
b. Biodiversity hotspots – encompassing microbial, plant, animal and insect.
c. Regions cultivating crops with geographical indicators (GI), e.g., Darjeeling tea, Basmati rice, as well as crops important for export which may not be associated with a GI e.g., non-GM soy cultivated in India.
d. Areas of organic agriculture.
e. Areas of indigenous communities.
f. Traditional varieties for crops and their characteristics e.g., salt tolerance, climate resilience, etc.
g. Areas with labor scarcity and areas of unemployment.
h. Prevalent cultivation practices including contribution of women farmers, men and women laborers to agricultural production.
i. Social groups and communities dependent on agriculture for their livelihoods including farmers, landless laborers.
j. Cultural, religious and ethical values surrounding food and agriculture.
k. Cultural and religious uses of biodiversity.

3. The choice of methodology must be context-specific and case-specific and multiple methods may be considered legitimate to address SECs depending on the crop/trait/application. For instance, while economic benefits/risks may be appraised through survey methodology and questionnaire, the impact on indigenous communities may be assessed through qualitative methodologies like focus group discussions or interviews. Similarly, an LMO likely to be introduced as food may require different methodology to make assessments than one intended merely for processing or animal feed. The choice of methodology may be governed by what it is that we are trying to assess among which group of people and may not be restricted in advance.

thank you
posted on 2015-04-13 04:23 UTC by Dr. Ranjini Warrier, India
RE: Opening of discussions on question 2 [#6659]
Dear all, and my apologies for posting at this very late stage.
To the question of how to define indigenous and local communities, as discussed by Martha, Ben and others, I would like to mention that in Norway, we do not have a strict definition on this, even not at present being in the process of writing up a regulation on traditional knowledge related to genetic resources (Nagoya Protocol work). In fact, we are not even trying to define these terms more closely. The terms are nevertheless very useful in the sense that they direct and the assessments in a way that makes it more difficult to overlook the needs and will of indiginous and local communities and weaker parts of society. As far as I know, the discussions on definitions were also quite tense when negiotiating the CBD itself.
Best wishes,
Casper
posted on 2015-04-13 08:51 UTC by Mr. Casper Linnestad, Norway
RE: Opening of discussions on question 2 [#6661]
Dear colleagues,

We are concluding a week of very fruitful discussion. Thank you very much for your participation and valuable contributions throughout this week.

To close this round, I want to share with you a brief summary of what have been tackled during this week, but before that, I remind you that the whole debate at hand, follows a line of command that starts with Agenda 21 ( Chapters 15 and 16), the Rio Declaration (Principles 6, 8, 9, 10 and 22 in particular) and the Convention on Biological Diversity (Article 19), which are the direct antecedents of the Cartagena Protocol.

That said, we have to start from the premise that we agree on the importance, not only of food supply, but also on the heritage for future generations, especially as the environment is concerned.
However, despite the shared experiences based on the guiding questions, we still have strong challenges before us. In some interventions, we have seen colleagues sharing experiences, while others are asking for conceptual clarity.

It is important not to lose sight, as mentioned in the forum, that each crop/organism (conventional or GM) can affect differently one group and their worldview. Also, the customs and traditions of each collectivity (indigenous or local community) should be taken into account. Moreover, we must not lose sight of coexistence. Or in the words of Benito Juarez, a native Indian Zapotec who was President of Mexico from 1857-1872: "Among individuals, as among nations, respect for the rights of others is peace."
posted on 2015-04-13 13:23 UTC by Bs Martha Germán Sánchez, Secretariat of Economy
RE: Opening of discussions on question 2 [#6662]
Discussion on question 2 is now closed. Thank you all very much for your comments. We would like to thank Ms. Martha Germán Sánchez for moderating the discussions this week.

We look forward to your continued participation over the coming weeks.

Regards,

Paola
posted on 2015-04-13 13:28 UTC by Ms. Paola Scarone, Secretariat of the Convention on Biological Diversity