Costa Rica's 'bio-prospecting' under fire

Once the UN model for benefiting from natural resources, nations struggles to protect biodiversity.

    One of the achievements of the first Rio Earth Summit, held 20 years ago, was the creation of the UN Convention on Biological Diversity.

    The convention's objective was to conserve natural habitats by allowing genetic material to be used as a natural resource for sustainable development. 

    In 1990, Costa Rica's National Biodiversity Institute signed a pioneering contract with the US pharmaceutical giant Merck to isolate extracts from rainforest plants in the search for medical remedies.

    It was the first country to recognise its rights to benefit from its biological resources and became a model for the UN convention.

    The implementation of biodiversity "prospecting" continues to face growing opposition, however, from political figures and climate change sceptics. 

    Al Jazeera's Tom Ackerman reports.

     

    SOURCE: Al Jazeera


    YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE

    Assad to Putin: Thank you for 'saving our country'

    Assad to Putin: Thank you for 'saving our country'

    Russian and Syrian presidents meet to discuss strategy against 'terrorism' and political settlement options.

    What is behind the covert Israeli-Saudi relations?

    What is behind the covert Israeli-Saudi relations?

    Analysts say that the recent covert ties between Israel and Saudi Arabia are due to a new regional paradigm.

    Is Saudi Arabia becoming a danger to the region?

    Is Saudi Arabia becoming a danger to the region?

    We talk to US Congressman Ro Khanna about power politics and debate Mohammed bin Salman's new strategy for the Kingdom.