Call for Rights of Nature in the Convention on Biodiversity


On July 12, 2021 the UN Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) Secretariat released the “first draft” of the post-2020 global biodiversity framework, updating the “zero draft” released in August 2020. Amongst the significant changes is the removal of the Rights of Nature as an “enabling condition” of the framework. 


Specifically, the “zero draft” of the post-2020 framework had added the following approach to implement the framework: "Consider and recognize, where appropriate, the rights of nature.” The newest, 2021, report has no such mention. At the time, the CBD became the first international environmental treaty to consider adopting the Rights of Nature.

The post-2020 global biodiversity framework will be on the docket at the 15th meeting of the “Conference of the Parties” to the CBD (COP-15), where it will be up for potential adoption. COP-15 is currently scheduled for October 2021 in Kunming, China. 

You can find the Press Release here


You can find our original proposal here

What you can do next:

  • Ask your country representatives to make sure this sentence will be kept in the final framework, which will be adopted in Kunming, China in 2021:  page 8 under G Enabling Conditions   14. Certain enabling conditions will be required for the implementation of the framework. Effective action on these enabling conditions will contribute to the attainment of other societal objectives. These enabling conditions are: (m) Consider and recognize, where appropriate, the rights of nature.

  • You can find the list of National Focal Points here. You can also send it to politicians and civil servants working with conservation policies in your country, as well as environmental organisations.

  • You can also include this brief on Rights of Nature

  • Please register here to let us stay in touch with you regarding this initiative!

  • And please sign and share the petition widely, thank you!


Why is including Rights of Nature in the legal systems and a Universal Declaration of the Rights of Mother Earth needed?


On average, we’ve seen an astonishing 60% decline in the size of populations of mammals, birds, fish, reptiles, and amphibians in just over 40 years, according to WWF’s Living Planet Report 2018. The top threats to species identified in the report link directly to human activities, including habitat loss and degradation and the excessive use of wildlife such as over-fishing and over-hunting.

The report presents a sobering picture of the impact human activity has on the world’s wildlife, forests, oceans, rivers, and climate. We’re facing a rapidly closing window for action and the urgent need for everyone—everyone—to collectively rethink and redefine how we value, protect, and restore nature.