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Biosafety Co-ordinating Committee (BCC)

MaizeGrain   Soya

What is the BCC? 
Committee composition
Terms of reference
Rules of procedure
Review process

What is the BCC?

The Biosafety Co-ordinating Committee (BCC) was set by means of the, Biosafety Co-ordinating Committee Regulations, 2002, Legal Notice 290 of 2002whose aim is to achieve an integrated approach on biosafety, the contained use of GMMs, the deliberate release into the environment of GMOs and the placing on the market of GMOs, in order to achieve a high level of protection of human health and the environment.The main function of the BCC is to advise The Malta Environment and Planning Authority (MEPA) and the Minister responsible for the Environment on environmental implications of GMOs.

 

Committee composition

Mr. Martin Seychell
, B. Pharm. Tech. (Hons), Chairman/Director Environment Protection, Malta Environment and Planning Authority, OPM.

Appointed Committee Members:

Mr. Joseph Abela Medici, B.Sc.(Hons.) Chem. Biol., M.Sc. Pathology: Genetics & Haematology, Secretary / Public officer responsible for biosafety, Malta Environment and Planning Authority, OPM.

Mr. John Attard Kingswell, M.Sc. Environmental Health (Edinburgh), Public officer responsible for public health, Department of Public Health, MHEC.

Mr. Darrin Stevens, B.Sc. Biol. Chem., M.Sc. Biol., Public officer responsible for biodiversity, Malta Environment and Planning Authority, OPM.

Mr. Cedric Camilleri, B.Sc. (Hons.) Chem. Biol., Public officer responsible for occupational health and safety, Occupational Health and Safety Authority, MEYE.

Dr. Marion Zammit Mangion, B.Sc. Chem. Biol., M.Sc. Biotech (Kent), Ph.D. (Westmin), Molecular Biotechnology, Scientist representing the scientific community.

Ms. Maureen Delia, B. Pharm.(Hons.), M.Sc. (Agric. Vet. Pharm.), Public officer responsible for rural affairs, Agricultural Services & Rural Development Dept, MRRA.

Mr. Joseph John Vella, B. Pharm.(Hons.), M.Sc. (Agric. Vet. Pharm.), Other representative required by the Competent Authority, Veterinary And Fisheries Department, MRRA.

Mr. Mark Dimech, B.Sc. Biol. Chem., M.Sc. Biol., Other representative required by the Competent Authority, Veterinary And Fisheries Department, MRRA.

Ms. Flavia Zammit, B.Sc. (Hons.) Chem. Biol., Other representative required by the Competent Authority, Malta Standards Authority, MCMP.

 

Terms of reference

The terms of reference of the BCC are stipulated in Schedule II of the Biosafety Co-ordinating Committee Regulations, 2002, Legal Notice 290 of 2002
.
 

Rules of procedure

The rules of procedure outline the mode of operation during each meeting of this Committee.
 

Review process

MEPA, being the Competent Authority for the Contained Use of Genetically Modified Micro-organisms Regulations, 2008, Legal Notice 127 of 2008 and the Deliberate Release into the Environment of GMOs Regulations, 2002, Legal Notice 170 of 2002, which transpose Directive 90/219/EEC and Directive 2001/18/EC, respectively, receives four types of applications arising from the above-mentioned legislation:
  • applications for individual contained use activities - applications for the notification of premises that will be used for contained use activities - applications for the release of GMOs into the environment for experimental purposes
  • applications for the release of GMOs into the environment by placing on the EU market Once one of these applications is received by MEPA, the BCC secretariat forwards a copy of the application to the BCC members for review and assessment. Comments made by the members are discussed and a position on the application is recommended. This recommendation is forwarded to MEPA for adoption.

In the case of applications for contained use and for releases into the environment for experimental purposes, the BCC secretariat grants / rejects consent accordingly. On the other hand, when a position is adopted on applications for the placing on the EU market of GMOs, a document summarising the concerns of the BCC is prepared and sent to the European Commission.

 

 

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