First Right to Climate Law Adopted in Colorado

April 11, 2017

Community Environmental Legal Defense Fund

Lafayette, CO, recently adopted the first law in Colorado recognizing the right to a healthy climate for people and nature, and banned the extraction of oil and gas as a violation of that right. CELDF assisted the community in drafting the measure. Read more about this ground-breaking action here.

And in another step in the advancement of the rights of nature, on March 31, the High Court of Uttarakhand in northern India issued a ruling declaring that the Gangotri & Yamunotriast Glaciers are legal persons. This follows the recent decision by the High Court that the River Ganga and River Yumana are legal persons as well. The court explained that declaring ecosystems as legal persons is necessary for their protection, and identified a number of steps that government must take to protect ecosystems. Read more about the growing movement for nature’s rights, including CELDF’s work, in The Christian Science Monitor here.

Check out our blog on the recent Colorado Court of Appeals decision requiring the Colorado Oil and Gas Conservation Commission (COGCC) to consider the petition of Colorado youth, who want the COGCC to stop issuing fracking permits until it has been determined it can be done without compromising the health and safety of people and the natural environment. Is it a win? Read Colorado Fracking “Win”: Redefining Victory.

Check out our upcoming events – including Climate Disobedience Center’s co-founder Ken Ward, and CELDF’s Thomas Linzey, in the Ohio / Pennsylvania Communities Rising Tour: Defying the Corporate State this weekend. Learn about our other events here.

Lastly, if you haven’t read our latest publication, We the People: Stories from the Community Rights Movement in the United States, check it out here and order today from PM Press! It is a revolutionary handbook portraying communities across the U.S. who have responded to environmentally destructive corporate projects by banning them locally.Φ

Community Environmental Legal Defense Fund is not a typical environmental organization. We assist communities to develop first-in-the-nation, groundbreaking laws to protect rights – including worker, environmental, and democratic rights, and rights of nature. CELDF provides free and low cost legal services, grassroots organizing, and education, to communities, states, and countries facing injustice. We help them to assert their rights to fight the harms they face. Learn more about how we work, or call us now at: 717-498-0054. We rely on you to make Community Rights happen! Support our work to advance Community Rights, including the rights of nature and climate rights.

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