Mexico steps up effort to protect biodiversity



Mexico steps up effort to protect biodiversity Mexico City: Mexico has signed the Nagoya-Kuala Lumpur Protocol, which sets the rules for protecting biodiversity, as well as for the responsible and safe use of biotechnology, authorities said.

The document is a supplement to the Cartagena Protocol on Biosafety, the Environment and Natural Resources Secretariat said.

"The goal of the protocol is to contribute to the sustainable utilization of biological diversity, providing international rules and procedures in the area of responsibility and compensation in relation to modified living organisms," the secretariat said in a statement.

The protocol was signed Monday in New York by National Ecology Institute, or INE, chief Francisco Barnes Regueiro, who represented President Felipe Calderon.

The agreement "contributes to defining and preventing environmental damage by requiring producers of genetically modified organisms to introduce more reliable and effective security plans", Environment Secretary Juan Rafael Elvira Quesada said.

"In addition, it establishes the conditions so that modern biotechnology is used in a safer and more responsible way," the environment secretary said.

Mexico joins the 46 other countries that have signed the protocol, which must be ratified by the Senate.

The Nagoya-Kuala Lumpur Supplementary Protocol on Liability and Redress to the Cartagena Protocol on Biosafety was signed in October 2010 after more than six years of intense negotiations.

IANS