Calling for a Global law to protect Life on Earth (Ecocide Law)

Every 6 months I will dedicate a specific time for a heartfelt expression of my belief that all life on Earth is sacred and needs to be protected. I commit to being an agent of change and call for Ecocide to be recognised as the 5th International Crime against Peace.

We are asking that you pledge a prayer or practice on the specified date that will be emailed, as an expression of deep focused intention. This could be a prayer, a period of meditation, a time of mindfulness, sacred song or chant. It could be a fast, or a dedicated yoga session. It may be the simple act of lighting a candle.

This will be a time when we will envision a world where the rights of life on earth are respected, honoured and protected by Ecocide Law.

Why is the recognition of Ecocide as the 5th International Crime Against Peace important?

The purpose for creating the offense of Ecocide as the 5th international Crime Against Peace is to put in place an international law at the very top level. 122 nations are State Parties to the Rome Statute. The Crime of Ecocide would sit alongside the following international crimes:

  1. The Crime of Genocide
  2. Crimes Against Humanity
  3. War Crimes
  4. The Crime of Aggression

The Law of Ecocide would with one powerful legal stroke cover, for example:

  • Large-scale land use that causes the direct destruction of habitats – as is the case with deforestation in most tropical rain forests
  • Significant pollution – for example, excess greenhouse gases from the industrial activities of the top Carbon Majors
  • Dangerous industrial activity where entire landscapes are destroyed – such as unconventional oil extraction

Ecocide law as international law prohibits mass damage and destruction of the Earth and creates a legal duty of care for all inhabitants that have been, or are at risk of being significantly harmed due to Ecocide.

Ecocide law has ‘legal teeth.’ Whilst we have many international agreements – voluntary codes of conduct, UN Resolutions, Treaties, Conventions, Protocols etc – the harm escalates. Not one of these international agreements prohibits Ecocide. So even if any significant agreements are made at the next Climate Summit in Paris 2015, implementation will be difficult as other agreements and laws, particularly relating to trade, will take precedence. The power of the Law of Ecocide is that it creates a legal duty of care that holds persons of ‘superior responsibility’ to account in a court of law (both criminal and civil).

More information

Ecocide Law

Polly Higgins TEDx Talk on Ecocide Law

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This Changes Everything (Naomi Klein)  

Campaign Against Climate Change

Join together in doing this to:

Develop our commitment, as we kindly urge ourselves to step up and be the change we want to see, by making changes in our own lives to protect the environment on which we all depend.
Develop an inner resolve, based on compassion and non-violence, as some of us move towards undertaking the acts of civil disobedience that will be necessary to bring a more healthy and holistic system into being.
Act as a collective voice and intention as we call for a paradigm shift in global awareness and for action to protect nature and support our climate, being particularly relevant to the lead up to the COP21 Climate Summit 2015 in December. Specifically we are calling for Ecocide to be recognised as the 5th International Crime Against Peace.

Getting involved is simple:

Make your pledge online
Share it with others
Ask others to make a pledge

If you are a teacher of a particular practice, feel free to dedicate a group session on that day to this intention. Please ask members of the group to make their individual pledges online. In that way we can build our numbers including for additional actions you might wish to join.

Pledge Holder: Michael Dinesh

I am initiating this pledge as I believe in the urgent need to have a universally accepted law to protect life on Earth. I also believe it is important that the Compassionate Revolution is firmly rooted in the soil of Non-violence and heart-based intention.

I am a concerned citizen calling out to others to join and support myself and those who are already committed to finding a better way. I am a music teacher and Bhakti musician (singer of sacred songs and chants). 

In 1989/1990 I walked 60000 miles around the whole coastline of Britain raising money for Greenpeace and Exeter Hospiscare with the theme of ‘Caring for the Earth, caring for each other’, chanting the mantra of Compassion, ‘Om Mani Padme Hum’ as I walked.  Since then this theme has developed an increasing urgency. 

In 1989 I was inspired by the hospitality and help of many generous people, but I walked alone. Today the enormity of the journey is such that I feel I cannot walk this particular challenge alone. We need to walk together, joining our hearts and minds, focusing on bringing about the inner and outer changes demanded by the many and multi-layered crises facing us all.

 

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