“Advancing the Understanding of Biosafety” Scientific Conference and Citizen Forum

– press release available in English, Deutsch, 中文, 日本語

“Advancing the Understanding of Biosafety” Scientific Conference and Citizen Forum

Press Release 02/10

28 Sep 2010 – The European Network of Scientists for Social and Environmental Responsibility (ENSSER), the Third World Network (TWN) and the Federation of German Scientists (Vereinigung Deutscher Wissenschaftler, VDW) are announcing the Scientific Conference “Advancing the Understanding on Biosafety” to be convened in Nagoya/Aichi Prefecture/Japan from October 07-09, 2010.

The Scientific Conference will gather 17 scientists and experts from developing and industrialised countries who have been engaged in the critical debate about the development of genetically engineered (GE) crops and their use in agriculture and nutrition for many years.

They will present recent scientific findings and political analyses on a broad range of topics, such as:

  • the surprisingly quick adaptation of insects to pesticide-producing Bt crops in South Africa and the challenges for Bt technology through resistant insects;
  • the contamination of traditional maize by transgenes in its centre of origin, México, and the responses of local and indigenous communities;
  • the fundamental change of the national agricultural system in Argentina through the replacement of food-producing systems by herbicide tolerant RR soya systems producing mainly animal feed for the export market;
  • the legal battles in India to enforce the right to public information with regard to the environmental and nutritional risk assessment data of Bt aubergine proposed for release as the first GE vegetable in its centre of origin.

The conference aims to inform the various Japanese stakeholders such as scientists, industry, NGOs, and media about the recent developments in technology assessment and risk assessment of genetically engineered organisms. To support the request of the public to receive information on biosafety issues that have been researched and interpreted independently from the interests of the developers and merchandisers of GE crops, the organisers will provide short articles covering the lectures in English, Japanese and Spanish.[1]

To present the results of the conference to the interested public and to advance the public biosafety debate in Japan, the Nagoya University in cooperation with ENSSER, TWN, and VDW will convene a Citizen Forum on Oct 09, 2010 with representatives of national and international institutions.

The conference and forum will be followed by the 5th Meeting of the Parties to the UN Cartagena Protocol on Biosafety (MOP-5, Oct. 11-15). Scientists and experts of the conference “Advancing the Understanding on Biosafety” will be present at MOP-5 to join the discussion about crucial issues being discussed such as the “Road Map” for Risk Assessment of Genetically Engineered Organisms or the Program of Work on Public Awareness, Education and Participation. The outcome of the conference will be presented during two Side-Events on Oct. 11 and 12 (both 13:15 – 14:45).[2]

ENSSER, TWN, and VDW are inviting all interested stakeholders to participate at these three biosafety events in Nagoya/Aichi Prefecture/Japan.

programs and pre-registration

Citizen ForumSocial Sustainability and Biological Safety

dates & venues

Scientific Conference: Oct 07 (14:00 – 18:15), Oct 08 (09:00 – 18:00), Oct 09 (09:00 – 13:15)

Lecture Hall at Graduate School of Environmental Studies Building, Nagoya University, Higashiyama-Campus

Citizen Forum: Oct 09 (15:00 – 18:00)

Large Lecture Hall at IB Building, Nagoya University, Higashiyama-Campus

Side Events at MOP-5: Nagoya Congress Center (NCC), 1-1 Atsuta-nishimachi, Atsuta-ku


ENSSER: Angelika Hilbeck E:

TWN: Ching Lim Li E:

VDW: Christine von Weizsäcker E:

[1] the English short papers are available online at the ENSSER web page, the Japanese and Spanish translations should be available at the Scientific Conference and will be posted on the ENSSER web page

[2] information on the MOP-5 side events: http://www.cbd.int/mop5/side-events/?mtg=mop-05