Report No. 171
The Biological Diversity Bill, 2000
A Bill to provide for conservation of biological diversity, sustainable use of its components and equitable sharing of benefits arising out of the use of biological resources in India.
WHEREAS there is an urgent need for conservation of biological diversity and associated traditional and contemporary rich knowledge in India and to take steps for its sustainable utilisation and equitable sharing of benefits out of such utilisation.
AND WHEREAS there is urgent need to develop scientific, technical and institutional capacities so as to anticipate, prevent and attack the causes of significant reduction and loss of biological diversity at source in India;
AND WHEREAS the United Nations Convention on Biological Diversity which entered into force on 23rd December, 1993 and to which India is a party reaffirms that the States have sovereign rights over their own biological resources and that they are responsible for conserving their biological diversity and using their biological resources in a sustainable manner; and also for fair and equitable sharing of the benefits arising out of utilisation of biological and genetic resources;
AND WHEREAS India recognises the prime need to protect, preserve and promote the health, environment and the food security of its citizens including the bio-safety of its population and the traditional knowledge and practices of its people.
AND WHEREAS it is considered necessary to;
(A) secure national legal commitment for protection of biological diversity and the maintenance of ecological processes and systems;
(B) establish a national legislative framework for the conservation of biological diversity and the ecologicallysustainable development of its components;
(C) ensure that safe biodiversity conservation standards for decision-making and activities are established as a means of operationalising the precautionary principle in order to anticipate, prevent and attack the causes of significant reduction and loss of biological diversity in the face of scientific uncertainty;
(D) prevent species and ecological communities from becoming vulnerable and to protect critical habitat;
(E) codify national institutional and administrative arrangements necessary to implement the United Nations Convention on Biological Diversity;
(F) establish awareness to care for the environment among all natural resource owners, managers, users and others whose actions could foreseeably harm the environment;
(G) ensure adequate funding for achievement of the above objects.
Be it enacted by Parliament in the Fiftieth Year of the Republic of India as follows:-