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Cartagena Protocol on Biosafety

The Cartagena Protocol on Biosafety to the Convention on Biological Diversity is an international treaty signed by 168 governments (as of 10/1/14) worldwide that seeks to protect biological diversity from the risks posed by GM technology.  The website for The Cartagena Protocol states the the following as the risks of biotechnology:

'Biotechnology is a very new field, and much about the interaction of LMOs [living modified organisms] with various ecosystems is not yet known. Some of the concerns about the new technology include its potential adverse effects on biological diversity, and potential risks to human health. Potential areas of concern might be unintended changes in the competitiveness, virulence, or other characteristics of the target species; the possibility of adverse impacts on non-target species (such as beneficial insects) and ecosystems; the potential for weediness in genetically modified crops (where a plant becomes more invasive than the original, perhaps by transferring its genes to wild relatives); and the stability of inserted genes (the possibilities that a gene will lose its effectiveness or will be re-transferred to another host).' [29]

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