rights of nature tribunals

Organized by ELC and allies, the International Rights of Nature People’s Tribunals re-frame and adjudicate prominent environmental and social justice cases within a rights of nature context. While the Tribunals do not yet have formal legal authority, the adjudication process: 

  • generates sophisticated legal analysis of diverse cases
  • recommends mitigation based on rights of nature
  • educates governments, advocacy groups, and the interested public on the tenets of the rights of nature and how they can be applied
  • enables others to develop legal structures that recognize the inherent rights of nature.

People’s Tribunals have a long tradition of addressing fundamental issues of justice beyond the reach of traditional courts, including military interventions and human rights abuses. They can and have evolved into formal, legal Tribunals, such as the Inter-American Court of Human Rights. 

Similarly, ELC and its allies envisioned the International Rights of Nature Tribunals as attaining the formal global authority needed to address violations of nature’s rights. These Tribunals consistently and formally apply the legal framework of existing nature’s rights laws and the Universal Declaration of the Rights of Mother Earth, a declaration adopted by tens of thousands of representatives of 140 countries in April 2010 in Cochabamba, Bolivia.

Three International and Two Bay-Area Rights of Nature Tribunals Have Been Held

More regional Rights of Nature Tribunals can be found here.

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