Thursday, November 18, 2010

AfD signs on to letter supporting recognition of rights of nature

The United Nations is currently considering a resolution to have the Rights of Nature debated by governments on Mother Earth Day, April 22, 2011. The document is at the informal consultation stage so is not public, but Alliance for Democracy has joined several other organizations in support of the debate, which would force countries to publicly declare their position with reference to the rights of nature and allow individuals and organizations to stand with supportive governments in moving forward on a global campaign for these rights.

Organizers note that these rights are embodied in the Universal Declaration on the Rights of Mother Earth, adopted when 32,000 people from around the world took up the call of President Morales and converged in Cochabamba, Bolivia, April 22, 2010, for the 'World People's Conference on Climate Change and the Rights of Mother Earth.

To read the letter, click on the "read more" link.

His Excellency M. Joseph Deiss
65th President of the United Nations General Assembly

Dear Mr. President,

We, the undersigned representatives of civil-society organizations from around the world,

Expressing concern over the well-documented environmental degradation and negative impacts on nature resulting from human activity,

Distressed by the consequent unsustainable depletion of the Earth's resources and the impacts on the natural systems which support life,

Urge you to convene, at the earliest opportunity, a high-level debate within the United Nations General Assembly focused on the rights of nature.

Mr. President, we believe that all alternatives for reestablishing harmony with nature should be discussed and analyzed within the United Nations, and this is not possible if we limit the debate to a consideration of the market-based approaches that have thus far garnered significant attention. It is also necessary to discuss proposals that consider that we are all part of the Earth's natural system and that, in order to reestablish the balance of this system, we should recognize that all living beings have rights that should be promoted and preserved.

The recognition of the rights of nature already exists in many places of the world at local, national and federal levels, including in some State constitutions. Raising the issue of the rights of nature in an open debate at the United Nations would allow Member States to share differing views and experiences on the subject.

We ask you to consider that such a debate would benefit the ongoing work of the United Nations related to the environment and critical issues such as climate change, forests, water and biodiversity.

We call on you to ensure that these issues, as they relate to the rights of nature and are essential to the future of humanity, are explored in the broadest, most transparent and democratic manner possible during the 65th Session of the United Nations General Assembly.

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