by ecorazzicontributor
Categories: Causes
Tags: .
Photo: Flickr via y2k_sflam

It’s an annoying fact that not everyone recycles or turns the lights off or makes efforts to so much as conserve water. So, what if the government stepped in and forced everyone to do all of those things?

That’s what lawmakers in Bolivia are taking steps toward with their “Law of Mother Earth” bill. It’s a piece of legislation that would grant nature equal rights to humans.

The laws would be the first of their kind, with 11 in total, and would recognize that the planet has an equal right to be protected.

The Guardian outlined the laws as: “the right to life and to exist; the right to continue vital cycles and processes free from human alteration; the right to pure water and clean air; the right to balance; the right not to be polluted; and the right to not have cellular structure modified or genetically altered.”

Vice President Alvaro Garcia Linera said when describing the new law, “Earth is the mother of all…the harmony [between man and nature] must be preserved as a guarantee of its regeneration.”

The South American country has been threatened by environmental changes, with temperatures steadily increasing and its glaciers (a source of water and electricity for them) disappearing at rapid rates.

Hopefully Bolivia’s bold move will lead to laws like this being implemented elsewhere!

Via Huffington Post

  • Emily

    While Bolivians do harm the environment less overall — it’s mainly because they have less stuff….fewer electronics to suck up energy, less water is available both physically (shortages occur a lot in Bolivia) and financially (too expensive), their houses are smaller and use fewer materials. In a developing country, people generally don’t have as much money to spend on random crap (tons of pairs of shoes, lots of packaged products, etc. However, people litter like crazy, trash is dumped in fields and rivers, an annual burning of fields leaves many cities polluted with thick smoke…etc. Bolivia is a far ways away from imposing a fine for leaving lights on or letting the water run.

  • mister jingles

    Central- and South America are making remarkable progress towards a new evolutionary consciousness! It is truly possible that they shall reach their green goal before the rest of the world!

  • LittleMe

    Sounds like hot air to me.

  • me

    This is very nice news – I just hope it holds water.
    Having lived in Bolivia for a while I can tell you the locals are not particularly interested in protecting the environment, this includes the government. As we speak, new roads are being constructed and rain forests are being cleared to bring more people into the tropical areas.
    In addition to that, peasants plant more and more coca, causing both massive land erosion problems in the Yungas area and forest destruction in the Chapare region. Not to mention the uncontrolled mercury intensive gold mining.
    Bolivia is still in a rather good situation as the population is rather small – but it is growing faster and faster and no laws will prevent the damage to pachamama.