Bioprospecting Advisory Commission
Establishes a temporary bioprospecting advisory commission to address issues relating to bioprospecting. Appropriates funds for commission to fulfill its mandate. Commission ends June 30, 2009.
TWENTY-FOURTH LEGISLATURE, 2007
STATE OF HAWAII
A BILL FOR AN ACT
relating to bioprospecting.
BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF HAWAII:
SECTION 1. Article XI, section 1, of the state constitution provides that "[a]ll public natural resources are held in trust by the State for the benefit of the people."
Section 190-1, Hawaii Revised Statutes, provides that the department of land and natural resources shall administer as a marine life conservation area all marine waters of the State.
The legislature finds that:
(1) Hawaii's biological diversity and biological resources are assets of the public trust and the general public;
(2) The biological diversity and biological resources on public lands and in the state marine waters are of great potential economic benefit in the areas of medicine, scientific research, biotechnology, and commercial development for the general public. If properly regulated, the potential economic benefit of these biological resources can create market-driven incentives and generate financial resources for the conservation and sustainable development of Hawaii's biological resources;
(3) Hawaii is experiencing a tremendous loss of biodiversity due to the conversion of natural habitat for development, environmental degradation, and nonsustainable consumptive practices; and
(4) The State has a trust obligation to ensure the preservation and sustainable use and equitable sharing of benefits of Hawaii's biological resources.
The purpose of this Act is to establish a temporary bioprospecting commission to develop a comprehensive plan for the preservation of biological diversity and biological resources as it relates to the use of bioprospecting on public lands and in the state marine waters.
SECTION 2. For the purpose of this Act:
"Biological diversity" means the variability among living organisms from all sources, including but not limited to:
(1) Terrestrial, marine, and other aquatic ecosystems and the ecological complexes of which they are a part; and
(2) Diversity within species, between species, and of ecosystems within the State.
"Biological resources" means biological and genetic resources, including plant material, animals, microorganisms, cells, and genes that exist on the public lands of Hawaii.
"Bioprospecting" means the collection, removal, or use of biological and genetic resources of any organism, mineral, or other organic substance found within the public lands of the State and the state marine waters for scientific research or commercial development.
"Commission" means the bioprospecting advisory commission established in this Act.
"Public lands" means public lands as defined in section 171-2, Hawaii Revised Statutes, including submerged lands, lands to which the University of Hawaii holds title, and ocean resources under state jurisdiction.
"State marine waters" has the meaning as set forth in section 190D-3, Hawaii Revised Statutes.
"Sustainable use" means the use of components of biological diversity in a way and at a rate that does not lead to the long‑term decline of biological diversity, thereby maintaining the economic and cultural potential of Hawaii's biological trust assets for the mutual benefit of present and future generations.
SECTION 3. (a) There is established a temporary bioprospecting advisory commission to develop a comprehensive plan for the preservation and use of the biological diversity and biological resources on public lands. The commission shall be placed within the office of Hawaiian affairs for administrative purposes and shall be exempt from section 26-34, Hawaii Revised Statutes. The office of Hawaiian affairs shall provide staff and technical support for the commission.
(b) The commission shall be composed of fifteen members as follows:
(1) The chairperson of the board of trustees of the office of Hawaiian affairs or the chairperson's designee;
(2) The president of the University of Hawaii or the president's designee;
(3) The director of business, economic development, and tourism or the director's designee;
(4) The chairperson of the board of land and natural resources or the chairperson's designee;
(5) The chairperson of the board of agriculture or the chairperson's designee;
(6) The director of health or the director's designee;
(7) Five members representing Hawaiians who have a demonstrated background in traditional and customary use of biological or genetic resources, the preservation of biological or genetic resources, indigenous and traditional technologies, or scientific or legal procedures for the protection or commercialization of biological and genetic resources. These five members shall be appointed by the governor from lists of nominees submitted by the president of the senate, the speaker of the house of representatives, and native Hawaiian organizations;
(8) One representative from the biotechnology industry whose principal place of business is in the State, and who shall be appointed by the governor from lists of nominees submitted by the president of the senate, the speaker of the house of representatives, and Hawaii-based representatives of the biotechnology industry;
(9) Two representatives from Hawaii's scientific community as follows:
(A) An ecologist who is familiar with the State's ecosystem; and
(B) A geneticist,
both of whom shall be appointed by the governor from lists of nominees submitted by the president of the senate, the speaker of the house of representatives, and members of Hawaii's scientific community; and
(10) A representative of the Hawaii Institute for Public Affairs.
The commission shall select a chairperson from among its members.
(c) The commission shall:
(1) Identify and develop issues and policies for the conservation and sustainable use of biological diversity, the responsible regulation of bioprospecting, the right of traditional, indigenous knowledge holders, the fair and equitable sharing of benefits arising from the use of genetic resources on the public lands and in the state marine waters, and the meaningful participation in these processes by traditional, indigenous knowledge holders;
(2) Review policies, laws, and models of other jurisdictions;
(3) Prepare a comprehensive report addressing the issues in paragraphs (1) and (2) and propose appropriate legislation; and
(4) Conduct an inventory of all ongoing bioprospecting activities in the State.
(d) The commission shall perform its duties as follows:
(1) Members shall serve without compensation; provided that members may be reimbursed for reasonable expenses, including travel expenses, incurred in the discharge of their duties;
(2) A majority of the members of the commission shall constitute a quorum for the transaction of business, except as otherwise required by chapter 92, Hawaii Revised Statutes;
(3) All meetings of the commission shall be subject to chapter 92, Hawaii Revised Statutes; and
(4) The commission may hold meetings as feasible and frequently as deemed necessary to receive testimony on issues related to its activities.
(e) The commission shall submit an interim report of its findings and recommendations to the legislature and the governor no later than twenty days before the convening of the regular session of 2008. The commission shall submit a final report of its findings and recommendations, including any proposed legislation, to the legislature and the governor no later than twenty days before the convening of the regular session 2009.
(f) The commission shall cease to exist on June 30, 2009.
SECTION 4. There is appropriated out of the general revenues of the State of Hawaii the sum of $ , or so much thereof as may be necessary for fiscal year 2007-2008, and the same sum, or so much thereof as may be necessary for fiscal year 2008-2009, to enable the temporary bioprospecting advisory commission to fulfill its mandate.
The sums appropriated shall be expended by the office of Hawaiian affairs for the purposes of this Act.
SECTION 5. This Act shall take effect on July 1, 2007.