Oireachtas Joint and Select Committees

Thursday, 19 January 2023

Select Committee on Housing, Planning and Local Government

Nagoya Protocol: Motion

Photo of Malcolm NoonanMalcolm Noonan (Carlow-Kilkenny, Green Party)
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Again, I will ask Mr. Moore to deal specifically with that question. I thank the Chairman for his comments on COP15. I also wish to thank our officials and team who represented Ireland so well as part of the wider EU negotiating team. Certainly, there was a very positive outcome from COP15 that will lead, I hope, to transformative change. I also thank this committee, which is very busy. Much of its work is dominated by dealing with housing legislation, given the crisis we are experiencing in that regard. We are appreciative of the space being given to the marine protected areas legislation and to the matter before the committee today. It is important for us because these issues are vital in nature.

The Nagoya Protocol emerged out of the wider negotiations that took place in Nagoya, Japan, in 2010. The protocol was 18 years in negotiation and took four years to draft. A substantial amount of work was done in the build-up to those negotiations in 2010. The element around the equitable sharing of genetic resources was important for less-developed countries in particular and for Ireland, one of the countries in receipt of that genetic information and those genetic resources. In most cases, less-developed countries are the repositories of that resource. It is critical that we had this protocol in place to ensure that there is fair and equitable sharing of the resources in question and to ensure that there is a common agreement among signatory nations to use those resources fairly and equitably. We have had reports from Trócaire and Oxfam in respect of agricology, supporting the wider genetic resources we have and how sharing these resources can ultimately benefit our wider ambition around the conservation and restoration of nature. I will ask Mr. Moore to come in and elaborate further on this topic, but that is the position as I see it in the context of the benefit of this protocol.