27 November 2011

Law of the Land

As the National Wildlife Federation reports, earlier this year, Bolivia granted legal rights to nature. This is a very interesting development, and it continues a conversation that is beginning to pick up steam.

I think it is important that we consider the possibility that nature has legal rights. First, it challenges our traditional views about our relationship with nature, and when we start to examine our views, we can develop them. Second, our consumption of resources is driven by the belief that they exist for our benefit, creating a way of life that often jeopardizes the well-being of the planet as well as ourselves; but seeing nature as having rights revolves around the idea of safeguarding the natural world's welfare, a focus that may also protect us.

It will be exciting if more people follow Bolivia's lead and pick up the discussion about nature's rights.

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