Ecuador and Bolivia have adopted constitutional provisions recognizing the Rights of Nature. Bolivia adopted statutes in 2010 and 2012 recognizing and seeking implementation of nature’s rights. New Zealand has taken a different legal approach, giving standing to nature through treaty agreements.

In 2010, the People’s Conference on Climate Change and the Rights of Mother Earth was held in Cochabamba, Bolivia. Over 35,000 people participated from around the world and supported the Universal Declaration of the Rights of Mother Earth (UDRME). The UDRME was presented to the United Nations General Assembly in 2011, and a petition for its international adoption has been signed by 839,703 people from 122 countries. To sign the petition, visit:

The International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) is an environmental network comprised of government and civil society organizations; over 16,000 experts and 1300 Member organizations. It serves as a “trusted repository of best practices, conservation tools, and international guidelines and standards.” The IUCN convenes every four years to discuss the “status of the natural world and the measures needed to safeguard it.” At the 2012 World Conservation Congress, IUCN members recognized nature’s rights by passing Resolution 100, “Incorporation of the Rights of Nature as the organizational focal point in IUCN’s decision making.” This resolution called for nature’s rights to be a “fundamental and absolute key element in all IUCN decisions,” and invited the Director General and IUCN Members to promote a Universal Declaration of the Rights of Nature. Read the resolution here:

As a member of the IUCN’s World Commission on Environmental Law, ELC prepared an intervention urging the IUCN to prioritize its Rights of Nature Resolution in its Programme of priorities for the next four years. ELC's advocacy was successful, with the IUCN incorporating commitments to rights of nature in its final 2017-2020 Programme. ELC also led a workshop at the Congress informing IUCN scientists, attorneys, government leaders and others about the importance of recognizing nature's rights in law.