Beginning Monday, March 13, two meetings sponsored by the United Nations in Curitiba will gather in southern Brazil the largest delegation ever at an international event in the environmental sphere.
According to information furnished by the Ministry of Environment, confirmations have been received from 300 people, 170 who will participate in the 8th Conference of Parties to the Biological Diversity Convention (COP-8) and 130 in the 3rd Meeting of Parties to the Cartagena Protocol on Biosecurity.
There will be simultaneous translations in the six UN languages (English, Spanish, French, Arabic, Chinese, and Russian), as well as Portuguese, and there will be parallel events totaling 275 – an average of 27 per day.
According to the secretary of Biodiversity and Forests, João Paulo Capobianco, more than five thousand people from 187 countries are expected, as well as over 100 ministers of the environment.
Besides hosting the meetings, Brazil will assume the presidency of the Biodiversity Convention (CDB) for the next two years. The convention is one of the main results of the UN Conference on Environment and Development (CNUMAD – also referred to as Rio 92), which occurred in Rio de Janeiro in June, 1992.
The convention is one of the most important agreements in the environmental sphere and represents the principal international forum for the definition of legal and political benchmarks for questions related to biodiversity.
The convention counts on the support of the 188 signatory nations that have already ratified the document, and its legal and political benchmarks include the Cartagena Protocol on Biosecurity, which sets rules for the cross-border transfer of living, genetically modified organisms.
The convention also created the International Phytogenetic Agricultural and Food Resource Treaty, which, within the ambit of the UN Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), establishes rules for access to the genetic resources of plants.