Biodiversity & Conservation

, Volume 12, Issue 7, pp 1511–1524

Regulating access to genetic resources under the Convention on Biological Diversity: an analysis of selected case studies

Authors

  • Liliana M. Dávalos
    • Department of Ecology, Evolution, and Environmental BiologyColumbia University
    • Division of Vertebrate ZoologyAmerican Museum of Natural History
  • Robin R. Sears
    • Department of Ecology, Evolution, and Environmental BiologyColumbia University
    • The New York Botanical Garden
  • Gleb Raygorodetsky
    • Department of Ecology, Evolution, and Environmental BiologyColumbia University
    • Wildlife Conservation Society
  • Benjamin L. Simmons
    • Columbia University Law School
    • School of International and Public AffairsColumbia University
  • Hugh Cross
    • Department of Ecology, Evolution, and Environmental BiologyColumbia University
    • The New York Botanical Garden
  • Taran Grant
    • Department of Ecology, Evolution, and Environmental BiologyColumbia University
    • Division of Vertebrate ZoologyAmerican Museum of Natural History
  • Tonya Barnes
    • School of International and Public AffairsColumbia University
  • Louis Putzel
    • School of International and Public AffairsColumbia University
  • Ana Luz Porzecanski
    • Department of Ecology, Evolution, and Environmental BiologyColumbia University
    • Division of Vertebrate ZoologyAmerican Museum of Natural History
Article

DOI: 10.1023/A:1023615303748

Cite this article as:
Dávalos, L.M., Sears, R.R., Raygorodetsky, G. et al. Biodiversity and Conservation (2003) 12: 1511. doi:10.1023/A:1023615303748

Abstract

In 1992 parties to the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) agreed to develop and implement policies to regulate and facilitate access to genetic resources (AGR). We examine regulations and agreements in Brazil, Colombia, and the Philippines in detail and discuss how these countries are implementing the AGR mandate. In particular, we evaluate progress toward achieving the CBD objectives of conserving biological diversity, using its components in a sustainable manner, and equitably sharing the benefits arising from the use of genetic resources. We highlight the difficulties in developing and implementing these policies, arising from the conflicting goals of regulating and facilitating AGR, as well as the special character of genetic resources, existing ex situ collections, issues of ownership and tenure, and the dearth of legal, institutional, and scientific capacity in many countries. We recommend (1) independent, multidisciplinary evaluation of the success of the access policy in achieving CBD objectives, (2) resolution of the conflict between traditional land tenure and legal property rights of genetic resources so as to match conservation obligations with benefit-sharing rights, (3) recognition that benefits obtained from AGR may be entirely non-monetary, and (4) that countries provide a 'two-track’ AGR application process separately for commercial and non-commercial users.

Andean PactBiodiversityBioprospectingBrazilColombiaConvention on Biological DiversityGenetic resourcesInternational environmental lawLegislationPhilippines

Copyright information

© Kluwer Academic Publishers 2003