Chile has become the second country to grant rights to in its constitutional, following support from the Earth Law Center and Defensa Ambiental.
The constitution will now include two articles:
1. “Nature has the right to have its existence protected and respected, to regeneration, to the maintenance and restoration of its functions and dynamic balances, which includes natural cycles, ecosystems and biodiversity.”
2. “These are principles for the protection of nature and the environment and include, at minimum, the principles of progressivity, precautionary, preventive, environmental justice, intergenerational solidarity, responsibility, and fair climate action.”
Referencing the environment in constitutions is a great motivator to take action. The inclusion of terms such as ‘justice’ and ‘regeneration’ implies that Chile is working towards a just and regenerative future.
Currently, only Chile and Ecuador have granted rights to nature. We could soon be witnessing others follow in their steps and prioritise protecting indigenous knowledge, restoring the system, and ensuring ‘fair climate action’.