On 21 September 2011, Testbiotech handed over a petition with nearly 9000 signatures to the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research in Berlin. This led to a longer exchange of opinions with the Head of Directorate Life Sciences, Petra Steiner-Hoffmann. The ministry will now take the demands in the petition into account during further discussions. So far, no decision has been taken on specific regulations concerning Synthetic Biology, the petitioners were told. The organisations suppporting the initiative such as Friends of the Earth Germany (BUND) and the German branch of Birdlife International (NABU) are demanding legal regulations to protect the environment from synthetic organisms, the registration and permanent control of those companies synthesizing gene sequences and initiatives for a broader public debate.
The next activity will be a public conference on 21 October 2011 in Germany on Synthetic Biology, organised by several of the supporting organisations. Testbiotech will be informing the EU Commission and the EU Parliament about the initiative.