News

Nov 30, 2022

Cleveland State trustees vote unanimously to strip John Marshall’s name from the college of law

Cleveland State trustees vote unanimously to strip John Marshall’s name from the college of law

Feature Photo by Gabriel Kramer / Ideastream Public Media Taru Taylor, a guest blogger with CELDF, helped spearhead efforts to rename law schools named after Former Chief Justice John Marshall, a key architect of the United State’s constitutional system who owned 200 slaves. CELDF along with many others signed onto the calls for law schools… Read more »

Read More | In The News, Success Story

Nov 17, 2022

Press Release: Back to the Future — Ohioans Still Poisoned After All These Years

Press Release: Back to the Future — Ohioans Still Poisoned After All These Years

“The spreading of toxic and radioactive well waste brine on Ohio roads and other surfaces threatens all Ohioans,” stated FaCT Brine Education Committee Chair, Ron Prosek.  “You could be living or traveling anywhere in Ohio and potentially be exposed to this dangerous material.  This is one of the most reckless practices that the State of Ohio has ever allowed.”

Read More | Chemical Trespass, Community Wires, In The News, Press Releases

Nov 16, 2022

Sneak Peek! — End of Year Newsletter 2022: We are Nature

Sneak Peek! — End of Year Newsletter 2022: We are Nature

Human and ecosystem viability come when we figure out how to orient our culture to be connected to all four parts: Living from, with, in, and as Nature.

Read More | News, Rights of Nature

Nov 16, 2022

CELDF presenting in the New England Environmental Justice Youth+ Summit — FREE WEBINAR OPEN TO ALL

CELDF presenting in the New England Environmental Justice Youth+ Summit — FREE WEBINAR OPEN TO ALL

November 19, 2022 ~ 11AM ET Ben Price – Community Environmental Legal Defense Fund (CELDF) – will be presenting at 11:00AM ET on “Nature as Property and the Nature of Property: Earth Emancipation is the Solution” Sponsored by the NH Conference of the United Church of Christ Co-sponsor: SNEUCC (Southern New England) Register Here. **Registration… Read more »

Read More | Events, News

Nov 10, 2022

Join the OHCRN: Virtual film screening and discussion of “The Seeds of Vandana Shiva”

Join the OHCRN: Virtual film screening and discussion of “The Seeds of Vandana Shiva”

View the film on your own or with others (organize a viewing party!) from Friday November 18 to Sunday November 20. The OHCRN will host a Zoom webinar discussion on Sunday November 20 at 2:00 pm ET. The panel will include the filmmaker, Jim Becket.

Read More | Corporate Agriculture, Events, In The News

Nov 8, 2022

Wouldn’t You Say? – What Do We Mean by “Community Rights?”

Wouldn’t You Say? – What Do We Mean by “Community Rights?”

Lakota advocate and water protector Debra White Plume (Wioweya Najin Wina), upon being introduced to the history of municipal subjugation in the United States during a Democracy School hosted by residents of the Pine Ridge Reservation in South Dakota, remarked that “municipalities are the white man’s reservations. The only difference is, we know we’re on reservations.”

Read More | Community Rights, Democratic Rights, In The News, Rights of Nature

Oct 31, 2022

Celebrating Victories in Europe and South America, the Rights of Nature Movement Plots Strategy in a Time of ‘Crises’

Celebrating Victories in Europe and South America, the Rights of Nature Movement Plots Strategy in a Time of ‘Crises’

A global alliance formed in 2010 to advance an unorthodox legal theory that ecosystems and wild animals have rights, similar to humans. Now, says one leader, those ideas are “legitimate subjects of debate.”

Read More | In The News, Rights of Nature

Oct 28, 2022

CELDF Allies with the Global Alliance for the Rights of Nature in Siena, Italy

CELDF Allies with the Global Alliance for the Rights of Nature in Siena, Italy

The Global Alliance for the Rights of Nature (GARN) gathered in Siena Italy at the 13th century monastery, Certosa di Pontignano, from October 15-18, and CELDF was there.

Read More | Events, In The News, Rights of Nature

Sep 30, 2022

CELDF presenting with “turn” on October 11th at 9 AM PT/12 PM EDT

CELDF presenting with “turn” on October 11th at 9 AM PT/12 PM EDT

CELDF organizers Tish O’Dell, Michelle Sanborn, and Chad Nicholson will present a panel discussion, October 11th at 12 PM EDT, on “Tapped Out: Is Water a Commodity to be Owned or a Living Being with Rights to Exist, Flourish and Thrive?”

Read More | Events, News

Sep 29, 2022

The rights of nature movement cannot be stopped

The rights of nature movement cannot be stopped

By Pamela Haines September 27, 2022 From the Navajo Nation to a small town in Pennsylvania to Ecuador, then across the world, the idea of enshrining the rights of nature is only growing.

Read More | In The News, Rights of Nature

Sep 28, 2022

Happy Anniversary Rights of Pachamama Ecuador!

Happy Anniversary Rights of Pachamama Ecuador!

We at CELDF want to recognize and celebrate the 14-year anniversary of this historic date when the country of Ecuador codified Rights of Pachamama into their national Constitution.

Read More | In The News, News, Rights of Nature

Sep 23, 2022

Wouldn’t You Say? – What are the Rights of Nature?

Wouldn’t You Say? – What are the Rights of Nature?

The law locks up the man or woman, Who steals the goose from off the common, But leaves the greater villain loose, Who steals the common from off the goose

Read More | Blogs, Issues, News, Rights of Nature

Sep 15, 2022

Announcing CELDF’s Proposed Rights of Nature Principles

Announcing CELDF’s Proposed Rights of Nature Principles

A new system of law based on respect for Nature and the obligations we share as collaborators with life-supporting ecosystems must be institutionalized, recognizing Nature as a unique legal entity and rights holder.

Read More | Issues, News, Resources, Rights of Nature

Sep 13, 2022

Chile’s Rejection

Chile’s Rejection

How could Chileans, after rising up in October 2019 to demand a new constitution, then voting by an overwhelming majority to initiate the constituent process, reject the proposed draft? Why would they align with right-wing forces seeking to preserve the Pinochet constitution? This astonishing result surely demands a multi-causal explanation.

Read More | Democratic Rights, In The News, Issues, News, Rights of Nature

Sep 12, 2022

Wouldn’t You Say? – Nature is What’s Real

Wouldn’t You Say? – Nature is What’s Real

You wouldn’t think, in a rational society, that anyone would have to be told this, but reality doesn’t care what anybody believes is true; it just is. And what isn’t, isn’t. 

Read More | Blogs, In The News, Issues, News, Rights of Nature

Sep 7, 2022

It’s Inevitable – More to Come in Chile

It’s Inevitable – More to Come in Chile

Despite the claims of the corporate-minded, rejection of the new constitution by the voters of Chile is not a repute of what the new constitution contained but one that shows the desperation of the powerful elite to hold on to their planetary destroying levels of greed and the lengths they will go to deny the inevitable. 

Read More | In The News, Rights of Nature

Sep 7, 2022

Unveiling Rights of Nature Artwork and Logo

Unveiling Rights of Nature Artwork and Logo

We want to begin this next chapter of the Nature Leads Series by unveiling CELF’s beautiful new Rights of Nature artwork and logo designed by two talented artists and organizers from the St. Lawrence River / Kaniatarowanenneh Watershed, Haudenosaunee Territory, in what is known as the New York State.

Read More | News, Rights of Nature

Sep 1, 2022

Why CELDF will be watching more than sports this Sunday

Why CELDF will be watching more than sports this Sunday

As Chilean voters are poised to go to the polls this coming Sunday, September 4, to hopefully become the second country in the world to include recognition of the Rights of Nature (RON) in their national constitution, it is obvious just by reading a few headlines in any given week that more countries need to embrace and follow Chile’s lead.

Read More | In The News, Rights of Nature

Aug 17, 2022

<strong>Grant Township Charter Struck Down by Commonwealth Court</strong>

Grant Township Charter Struck Down by Commonwealth Court

While unjust, the ruling from the Commonwealth Court is not unexpected. Courts have routinely ruled against communities and the environment in favor of harmful corporate interests.

Read More | Press Releases

Aug 8, 2022

Local group joins effort to protect Ohio River Watershed

Local group joins effort to protect Ohio River Watershed

Calls to reconsider humanity’s relationship with nature are not new, but perhaps they are more urgent now than ever before.

Read More | Community Wires, In The News, News

Jul 8, 2022

“Putting the rights of nature on the map. A quantitative analysis of rights of nature initiatives across the world.”

“Putting the rights of nature on the map. A quantitative analysis of rights of nature initiatives across the world.”

The Rights of Nature (RoN) promote a new understanding of the human
environment, where natural entities are conceived as subjects with intrinsic value independent of human interests. The implementation of this idea
gained momentum in the United States in 2006. One decade and a half later, the idea has spread all over the world.

Read More | News, Resources, Rights of Nature

Jul 6, 2022

Truthout: Nature Isn’t a “Vault” Full of Material Value. It Is a Treasure to Be Valued.

Truthout: Nature Isn’t a “Vault” Full of Material Value. It Is a Treasure to Be Valued.

CELDF’s Ben Price wrote this article, featured in Truthout, about a mining corporation’s scam plan, pushed as an environmentally friendly investment opportunity.

Read More | In The News, News, Rights of Nature

Jul 5, 2022

Join CELDF & Sierra Club Niagara Group Environmental Series on Rights of Nature

Join CELDF & Sierra Club Niagara Group Environmental Series on Rights of Nature

Wednesday, July 20, 2022 at 6:30 PM Eastern Time Sierra Club Niagara Group Environmental Series: Rights of Nature Legislation with Dr. Joe Stahlman, Tish O’Dell and Assemblyman Patrick Burke Rights of nature legislation bring us back to the concept of being one with nature, a belief held by indigenous cultures throughout the world. The current… Read more »

Read More | Events, News

Jul 5, 2022

Available Now: English Translation & Webinar of the Landmark Decision in Ecuador to Protect Los Cedros Forest over Mining Profits

Available Now: English Translation & Webinar of the Landmark Decision in Ecuador to Protect Los Cedros Forest over Mining Profits

We at CELDF were excited to be able to read the full decision of the Constitutional Court of Ecuador upholding the rights of the Los Cedros Forest over a mining project and we are sharing that decision with you in both English and Spanish. We want to thank the Global Alliance for the Rights of Nature… Read more »

Read More | News, Resources, Rights of Nature

Jun 15, 2022

A Living Tribute to Philip Jurus

A Living Tribute to Philip Jurus

In February 2019, just days before the Toledo special election on the Lake Erie Bill of Rights in Toledo Ohio, Philip Jurus heard an interview on NPR about the upcoming vote. The interview moved him to write to me and share a poem he had written about Lake Erie and her distressed condition back in… Read more »

Read More | Community Wires, News

May 19, 2022

What do we want? Clean Water! When do we want it? Yesterday! 

What do we want? Clean Water! When do we want it? Yesterday! 

Our communities deserve more than just the right to Clean Water; our entire ecosystem, our Mother Earth depends on us to end the poisoning. It seems to me we need to recognize the Rights of Nature, and make it illegal to poison Earth and her inhabitants.

Read More | Chemical Trespass, Community Wires, Corporate Agriculture, Issues, Rights of Nature

May 11, 2022

Building Our Children’s Trust Needs to Start With Reality

Building Our Children’s Trust Needs to Start With Reality

While we’re being told by scientific authority that decisive action to reduce carbon emissions is mandatory within the 2020’s, the legal theory underlying Juliana is risky and time-consuming. Worse, “victory” in Juliana would mean contradictory and self-defeating technological fixes which are misleadingly cast as proven ways to salvage life on the planet. In these potentially closing moments of human existence, the inhabitants, human and otherwise, deserve a whole lot better.

Read More | Blogs, News

May 4, 2022

It’s Not All Bad

It’s Not All Bad

Over the last 15 years, grassroots work that establishes rights for human and natural communities has expanded in ways that no one could have foreseen. And while we will celebrate the legal and the political victories, the truth is that none of this would have happened without people…

Read More | Blogs, News

Apr 27, 2022

Less is More: Confronting the American Nightmare of Stuff

Less is More: Confronting the American Nightmare of Stuff

The system has worked hard to create obedience in a number of ways and to cover up and misdirect the true impacts of what our obsession with stuff has resulted in. Yet the misdirection continues to keep our obedience to stuff as if the seeking out and possessing of stuff is akin to our biological need to breathe. 

Read More | Blogs, News

Apr 20, 2022

Some things never change, but we better start!

Some things never change, but we better start!

“Claiming to fight for clean water because the human community depends on clean water to bring in more tourism or that we need to destroy an entire ecosystem for lithium so that humans can continue as they have, misses the point of why we need to change. The other species in the river don’t benefit from more tourism and the plants and the animals on top of the lithium deposit and the aquifer beneath it won’t benefit either.”

Read More | Blogs, News

Apr 18, 2022

Grant Township is fighting back | PennLive letters

Grant Township is fighting back | PennLive letters

April 20th is a big day in Harrisburg for the rights of communities to defend their water from industrial pollution. For years Grant Township, in Indiana County, PA, has been resisting the placement of injection wells on their land. In 2015 Township residents adopted a Home Rule Charter containing a “Community Bill of Rights.” This… Read more »

Read More | Community Wires, News

Apr 15, 2022

INVISIBLE HAND film viewing and discussion, June 12th

INVISIBLE HAND film viewing and discussion, June 12th

If corporations have rights, why not Nature? Join the Virginia Community Rights Network (VACRN) and its partner organizations for the virtual viewing and discussion of the award-winning film Invisible Hand. Watch the 90-minute movie during the 24-hour window. Then join us for a zoom discussion. Community Environmental Legal Defense Fund (CELDF) organizers Tish O’Dell and Ben… Read more »

Read More | Events, News

Apr 14, 2022

The Ohio River Watershed: How to Keep it Healthy

The Ohio River Watershed: How to Keep it Healthy

PART 2: WHO SPEAKS FOR NATURE? APRIL PUBLIC FORUM – Women’s City Club of Greater CincinnatiTUESDAY, APRIL 19, 7 PM via ZOOM The forum will look at a new legal strategy for protecting our water and natural environment from the emerging new threats of industrial pollutants. PANELISTS Tish O’Dell, Community Environmental Legal Defense Fund (CELDF)Susan… Read more »

Read More | Events, News

Apr 13, 2022

Earth Emancipation Now!

Earth Emancipation Now!

Earth Emancipation Now!
Synopsis: The American Empire was built on the model of European colonialism and the enclosure of the Commons. The Federalists, who crafted the U.S. Constitution, emulated Old World Empires by privatizing government and transforming the whole natural world into property. They erected an aristocracy of wealth by vesting in property itself the authority to govern. Our common environment is legally enslaved to the whims of its owners and they, by virtue of that ownership, govern us. There is no alternative to save planet Earth but to emancipate Nature from legal enslavement as property.

Read More | Blogs, News

Apr 12, 2022

Earth Day Film Presentation at the Taos Center for the Arts in New Mexico on April 23rd 10 AM

Earth Day Film Presentation at the Taos Center for the Arts in New Mexico on April 23rd 10 AM

A showing of the documentary “The Invisible Hand” at the Taos Center for the Arts in New Mexico will take place, with its producer, Melissa A. Troutman, who will speak about rights of nature along with live-streamed members of CELDF for a Q&A. The Rio Grande is in great danger and needs our bodies and… Read more »

Read More | Events, News

Apr 11, 2022

DAMAGES Podcast: The Backlash

DAMAGES Podcast: The Backlash

Episode DescriptionIn 2019, after a decade-long campaign, voters in Toledo Ohio voted to approve the Lake Erie Bill of Rights, effectively giving the lake personhood. It drew an incredible amount of attention. This wasn’t San Francisco hippies or Brooklyn hipsters talking about rights of nature, this was middle-aged moms in the Rust Belt, and that… Read more »

Read More | Multimedia, News, Resources, Rights of Nature

Apr 1, 2022

Portland Democracy School: May 2022

Portland Democracy School: May 2022

Join our community partner as they host a Portland Democracy School event.

Read More | Events, News

Mar 22, 2022

OHCRN 2022 Empowering Community Film Festival: Santiago Rising 

OHCRN 2022 Empowering Community Film Festival: Santiago Rising 

Filmed during the weeks after protests began, Santiago Rising meets social movements, protesters, and ordinary people in their struggle for equality and human rights. The film charts the build-up to the historic vote, in October 2020, that saw Chileans vote for a new constitution to replace the one imposed during the brutal Pinochet dictatorship. Santiago Rising emphasizes… Read more »

Read More | Events, In The News, Issues, News

Mar 22, 2022

Podcast with GrassRoot Ohio: Death by Democracy- Episode 2 – w/ Tish O’Dell

Podcast with GrassRoot Ohio: Death by Democracy- Episode 2 – w/ Tish O’Dell

Carolyn Harding with Tish O’Dell, a powerful voice for justice in Ohio, the US, and Globally. Tish has been a Community Organizer for CELDF (Community Environmental Legal Defense Fund) since 2012 assisting residents to organize rights-based initiatives in their communities in order to help them “make real” the just and sustainable communities they envision for… Read more »

Read More | Community Rights, Democratic Rights, In The News, Issues, News, Publications, Resources

Mar 16, 2022

Lucrative Losses & Poisonous Profits Symposium: An Overview of the Domestic and Global Exploitation of Nature and the Way Forward

Lucrative Losses & Poisonous Profits Symposium: An Overview of the Domestic and Global Exploitation of Nature and the Way Forward

CELDF’s Tish O’Dell is speaking on Panel #4, “Contamination of Water.” This Panel will take place on Friday, March 25 from 11:40 AM – 12:45 PM.

Terry Lodge, activist attorney with CELDF, is speaking on Panel #2, “Contamination of Land.” This panel will take place on Thursday, March 24 from 11:50 AM – 12:55 PM

American University Washington College of Law’s Program on Environmental and Energy Law and Sustainable Development Law & Policy Brief, in association with the Animal Law Society, Energy Law & Policy Society, Environmental Law Society, and Native American Law Students Association are excited to host this year’s annual Symposium, “Lucrative Losses & Poisonous Profits: An Overview of the Domestic and Global Exploitation of Nature and the Way Forward” over Zoom from 10 AM – 1 PM on March 24 and 25, 2022. Over the course of four panels—activists, professors, legal and policy experts, climate scientists, and professors will discuss the international and domestic contamination and overuse of water and land from modern environmental law, indigenous, and rights of nature perspectives. The panelists will explore the devastating impacts of some of nature’s biggest threats, including pollution, deforestation, and industrial fishing.

Read More | Chemical Trespass, Corporate 'Rights', Events, Extraction & Pollution, News, Rights of Nature, Water Privitization

Mar 15, 2022

CELDF is seeking a Grant Writer | Job Opening

CELDF is seeking a Grant Writer | Job Opening

The person in this position will play an integral role in expanding CELDF’s support for its mission to advance democratic and environmental rights. This is a part-time remote contract position, with the possibility of an expanded role over time.

Read More | Blogs, In The News, News, Resources

Mar 15, 2022

LEBOR like bill in New York seeks Rights of Nature for Great Lakes

LEBOR like bill in New York seeks Rights of Nature for Great Lakes

New York State Assemblyman Patrick Burke, a 37-year-old Democrat from the Buffalo area, has introduced legislation “that will create a Great Lakes Bill of Rights with the goal of securing legal rights for the entire ecosystem and giving people and nature a role in the decision-making process regarding current and future projects that impact the… Read more »

Read More | In The News, News, Rights of Nature

Mar 10, 2022

Andrea Bowers: Can the world mend in this body?

Andrea Bowers: Can the world mend in this body?

The Lake Erie Bill of Rights and CELDF are influencing Bower’s work on Rights of Nature.

Read More | In The News, Rights of Nature