Promoting Earth Education
As is the case with our legal systems, our education systems are embedded within an over-arching assumption of humans as separate from, and “managers” of, the natural world. As a result, fundamental challenges to the current legal, economic, and corporate models that govern our society and decide on our collective well-being are generally an after-thought in our educational models.
Earth Law Center works to change this paradigm and prepare tomorrow’s leaders for the significant challenges that they will face. The Center does so in part by developing and circulating “rights of nature” law school curricula and conducting law and policy instruction in universities. Such efforts not only expand education, but they also begin to build a body of advocates for “rights for nature” from the ground up. The Center also seeks to create supportive clinics in law schools and build partnerships more broadly with universities seeking to create similar education models.
Earth Law Center's Initiatives
Earth Law Center has developed a detailed Earth Law curriculum to be presented in law schools for a two- to three-credit class. The Center taught this Earth Law class at Vermont Law School during its 2012 Summer Session, will teach this class again at the 2013 Summer Session, and will promote use of this curriculum in other universities. The Center also presented on this topic in seminars at Stanford Law School, the University of Hawai'i Richardson School of Law, Southern Cross University in Lismore, Australia, at UCLA's Institute for the Environment in October 2012, at the University of Denver's Sturm College of Law in November 2012, at the University of Victoria, B.C. in March and April 2013, and at Griffith University in Brisbane, Australia as part of their “Wild Law” Conference.
Earth Law Center also has developed partnerships to advance rights for nature with Southern Cross University’s “Earth Law Network,” as well as Barry University’s Center for Earth Jurisprudence. Earth Law Center’s Executive Director has been named a Research Affiliate with the University of Victoria, British Columbia’s Centre for Global Studies and its POLIS Project on Ecological Governance, which has an active nature’s rights program entitled “Green Legal Theory”. The Center will expand these partnerships to other universities.
As part of this education and outreach effort, the Center will connect universities and researchers through its Earth Community mapping initiative, which will demonstrate over time the growing number of educational projects advancing the legal, economic, and scientific elements of rights for nature world-wide.
Center for Earth Jurisprudence
POLIS Project on Green Legal Theory
Southern Cross University Earth Laws Network
The New School at Commonweal
The Gaia Foundation
Global Alliance for the Rights of Nature
Earth Charter Initiative
Center for Ecozoic Studies
"Earth Law," Vermont Law School, July 2012 (course summary)
Barry Univeristy, "Exploring Principles of Earth Jurisprudence" Syllabus
Linda Sheehan, "Fighting for Waterway Rights in California," Presented at Griffith University, Sept. 2011