Rights of Nature

One of our core inspirations and tools in seeking to protect and represent the natural world is the idea of Rights of Nature.

One of our core inspirations and tools in seeking to protect and represent the natural world is the idea of Rights of Nature.

‘Rights of Nature’ proposes that nature – in general and/or particular ecosystems and species – should have legal rights and the ability to act (via human representatives) in the legal system. This is based in an ecocentric way of thinking which recognises that human beings live as just one interconnected part of a huge ecological world and that the non-human natural world has inherent value. Further, human health and wellbeing is intertwined with the wellbeing of the rest of nature.

Rights of Nature in Our Work

The idea underpins much of what we do. It forms our basic orientation with regards to nature and is part of understanding our place in the world. We conduct research on topics relating to the Rights of Nature and are involved in advocacy to further the realisation of Rights of Nature in the UK. We offer support to groups, organisations and campaigns looking to defend and realise the Rights of Nature. Our work on Nature-Positive Corporate Governance is about encouraging businesses to internalise a Rights of Nature approach in their organisation.


We develop expert knowledge on Rights of Nature and provide accessible resources for campaigners, such as in this report:

Report: Realising Rights of Nature: Understanding the Variety of Legal Instruments
A new report by LFN Researcher Alex May.

We present workshops and give talks:

ERCS’s Environmental Rights Summit
LFN Researcher Alex May had a great time attending the Environmental Rights Centre for Scotland’s Environmental Rights Summit yesterday

We support campaigners who are working to protect nature:

Recognising Nature Rights
Barrister and activist, Paul Powlesland, presents the argument for legal recognition of the rights of nature, and the rights of rivers.
Paul Powlesland | Barristers | Garden Court Chambers | Leading Barristers located in London, UK
Paul is passionate about protecting and representing the natural world and all who seek to defend it. He specialises in upholding the rights of environmental activists to protest and protect the natural world, and uses environmental law and regulations to defend trees, rivers and wildlife. Paul is a…

We have submitted to consultations where there are opportunities for Rights of Nature to be developed:

Welcoming the Report by the Irish Citizens’ Assembly on Biodiversity Loss
The Constitutional Recognition of the Rights of Nature features in new report.

Our work on Nature-Positive Corporate Governance is about internalising a Rights of Nature approach as part of an organisation's practice:

Nature-Positive Corporate Governance
Supporting organisations that want to have a positive impact on Nature.

LFN Co-Founder Paul Powlesland is involved in campaigning and restoration work with his local river:

Our History
Rivers as human habitatsThe waterways and rivers of London have been called home by boat dwellers for many decades. The River Roding has had an enigmatic settlement of large houseboats at Barking’s town quay for twenty years. At odds with…