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CPB Regional Advisors for Latin America

Emma Lucía RIVERA
Languages: Spanish, English

Assist proactively with design and implementation of capacity building programs and train national BCH staff in fully understanding national obligations to the Cartagena Protocol on Biosafety (CPB) (30%).
Coordinate and liaise with the BCH Project Task Manager to analyze requests on specific CPB capacity building requirements submitted by participating countries to support the installation and maintenance of their national BCH component (30%);
Provide continued advice and training to national BCH staff on the provisions of the CPB (20%)
Discuss and identify with the BCH Project Task Manager means and ways to internalize training outputs to ensure sustainability of national BCH beyond the project life (10%);

Analyze strengths and weaknesses of CPB knowledge management on the national level (10%)

Biografía resumida
Nivel académico: Bióloga.  Postgrado en Ciencias Agrarias. Posgrado en Bioseguridad.

Experiencia con el BCH: Coordinación del intercambio de información sobre bioseguridad en Colombia. Apoyo a la delegación colombiana en reuniones internacionales relacionadas con el BCH y Protocolo de Cartagena sobre Bioseguridad (PCB). Diseño e implementación de programas de entrenamiento y capacitación a funcionarios del BCH y el gobierno, para responder las obligaciones nacionales relacionadas con el PCB y el BCH. Enlace con el Coordinador del Proyecto BCH para analizar las necesidades expresadas por los países en cuanto a capacitación y sostenibilidad del BCH a nivel nacional. Asesoría y entrenamiento constante de los funcionarios Gubernamentales relacionados con el BCH. Traducción de materiales de entrenamiento como herramientas ofrecidas en la página Web del BCH.

Participación reuniones internacionales: COP-MOP3 (Curitiba, 13–17 Marzo 2006), y en dos IAC (Informal Advisory Committee: Ginebra, 23-24 Noviembre 2006. Montreal, 4-5 Octubre 2007).

Talleres dictados sobre BCH: Uno en Panamá, dos en República Dominicana, dos en Honduras, dos en Venezuela y uno en Uruguay.

Languages: English, Spanish

Diana Ponce-Nava is an international lawyer whose career has been focused over the last 15 years on environmental issues both in her home country and internationally. Her areas of expertise include international environmental negotiations, as well as the development, undertaking and assessment of international cooperation environmental projects on global issues (biodiversity, ozone layer, climate change), regional issues (marine resources and coastal areas, fisheries, transboundary pollution) and local issues (air quality, natural protected areas and wildlife). She has been involved in negotiations in over 50 countries and participated in cooperation projects in the Latin American region, particularly with the Central American Commission on Environment and Development. She has strong experience in working with governments, international and national NGOs, and with groups and community level.

She has served as Policy Adviser to the Executive Director of UNEP in Kenya. She has been International Policy Co-ordinator and Adviser in the Environment and Natural Resources and Fisheries Secretariat, as well as General Director of Planning and Environmental Policy, in the Environment Ministry of Mexico City Government. Until October 2004 she was she was Deputy Attorney for Natural Resources in Federal Attorney's Office for Environment Protection.

She has taught at Universities in Mexico and the US and is a member of the International Council of Environmental Law of the International Union of Conservation Nature IUCN. Since November 2004 she is Member of the International Board of Advisors of McGeorge School of Law of the University of the Pacific, in California.

Her educational background includes, besides a law degree from the National Autonomous University of Mexico an L.L.M. from the London School of Economics and Political Sciences, and diplomas on Comparative Law at the International University of Strasbourg, US Studies at the University of San Diego as well as on Government and Social Communication at the National Institute for Public Administration of Mexico.

Maria de Lourdes TORRES
Languages: Spanish, English, and German

Maria de Lourdes Torres is a full-time professor at Universidad San Francisco de Quito, Ecuador (USFQ). After finishing her Ph.D. studies in plant molecular biology at Freie Universität, Berlin, Germany, she returned to her home country where she created and established the Biotechnology Area at USFQ. Since 1997 she is the Head of the Biotechnology Department. In addition to the different courses she teaches -such as Molecular Biology, Biosafety, Agrobiotechnology and Microbiology- she also organizes the career curriculum and oversees other professors and students in the area. Currently she is also directing different research projects mainly related with in vitro culture and with the molecular characterization, through the use of microsatellite and AFLP markers, of the genetic variability of two tropical fruit crops of great agronomic importance to Ecuador.

Within the area of biosafety, she has already completed, with the help of her senior students, three public awareness surveys related to genetically modified organisms (GMO). It is important to mention that this is a pioneer project in Ecuador, since no other studies have been carried out in this field.

As a consultant, she has developed different documents mainly in the area of biosafety concerned with genetically modified organisms, genetic resources and genetic diversity.

The last one was related to a study in which the different biosafety regulations of 12 countries were analyzed. This study was used as the basis for the formulation of a national biosafety regulation in the context of establishing the national biosafety framework.

Over the past nine years she has also been involved in the development of policies and regulations in Biosafety related to the use and management of genetically modified organisms. She has worked as a consultant and advisor for her country’s Ministry of Environment and Ministry of Agriculture. Between 2003 and 2005, she was the president of the National Coordination Committee of the Biosafety Project UNEP-GEF; a project implemented by the Ministry of Environment.

Since 2006 she is a member of the National Biosafety Committee, and acts as a delegate for the academic sector.

During this period, she has had the opportunity to attend several international training courses within the field, act as a speaker in several international and regional seminars and congresses, and participate as Ecuador’s representative in a number of international workshops. Currently she is the official Ecuadorian delegate in the discussions of Article 27 from the Cartagena Protocol.

Throughout these years, Ms. Torres has gained a great experience working with different stakeholders, such as government officials, NGOs, the private sector and the academia in the areas of risk assessment, public awareness, and biosafety regulations.

Her participation in different workshops, meetings and congresses, has helped Ms. Torres build a strong contact network with different Latin American professionals, which has focused on the discussion and improvement of biosafety issues in the Region.

Her extensive experience ensures successful guidance in project planning, implementing, monitoring, evaluating, and training of personnel.