Secretary-General Urges Remembrance of the Buddha’s Message: Tolerance, Respect for All Religions
May 16, 2011
United Nations Press Release

Teaching Religion and Ecology: Background and Overview
May 2011
Religious Studies News (American Academy of Religion)

No place to land: Loss of natural habitats threatens migratory birds globally
May 12, 2011
United Nations Environment Programme

The Dharmic Method to Save the Planet
May 12, 2011
Huffington Post

$5 Million in Grants to Study the Healing and Restorative Power of Nature
May 12, 2011
Press Release

Hindus back Pontifical Academy of Sciences’ call to “protect the habitat”
May 11, 2011
ANI Press Release

Four Biblical Voices on our Relationship to Creation
May 11, 2011
Huffington Post

UN Announces Winners of Flagship Environment Award
May 10, 2011
United Nations Environment Programme

Vatican Report Shines Light on Climate Change Divisions Within the U.S. Faith Community
May 10, 2011
New York Times

Monks Fight to Get Cambodian Forests on the Carbon Market
May 9, 2011
Time Magazine

Vatican working group calls for concrete steps to combat climate change
May 9, 2011
Catholic News Service

Vatican Issues Major Report on Science of Climate Change
May 6, 2011
Catholic Climate Covenant

Oil spill in Lubicon Lake Cree Nation, Alberta: KAIROS urgent action
May 6, 2011
KAIROS Canadian Ecumenical Justice Initiatives

The Christian case for environmentalism
May 2, 2011
The Baltimore Sun

Lord Ganesha worshiped to open Nevada Earth Day Celebrations
May 2, 2011
Albuquerque Express

Building the Sacred Inside and Out: Green Architecture for Houses of Worship
April 26, 2011
Huffington Post

Save Yamuna Movement picking up momentum
April 23, 2011
Vrindavan Today

Earth Day Trails
April 22, 2011
The Bozone

Hindus Find a Ganges in Queens, to Park Rangers’ Dismay
April 21, 2011
New York Times

EPA Launches Faith-based and Neighborhood Partnerships Initiative/EPA’s coordination
April 18, 2011
EPA Press Release

Bolivia Set to Pass Historic ‘Law of Mother Earth’ Which Will Grant Nature Equal Rights to Humans
April 18, 2011
PV Pulse

April 18, 2011
By Keph Senett
PV Pulse

With the cooperation of politicians and grassroots organizations, Bolivia is set to pass the Law of Mother Earth which will grant nature the same rights and protections as humans. The piece of legislation, called la Ley de Derechos de la Madre Tierra, is intended to encourage a radical shift in conservation attitudes and actions, to enforce new control measures on industry, and to reduce environmental destruction.

The law redefines natural resources as blessings and confers the same rights to nature as to human beings, including: the right to life and to exist; the right to continue vital cycles and processes free from human alteration; the right to pure water and clean air; the right to balance; the right not to be polluted; and the right to not have cellular structure modified or genetically altered. Perhaps the most controversial point is the right "to not be affected by mega-infrastructure and development projects that affect the balance of ecosystems and the local inhabitant communities".

In late 2005 Bolivia elected its first indigenous president, Evo Morales. Morales is an outspoken champion for environmental protection, petitioning for substantive change within his country and at the United Nations. Bolivia, one of South America's poorest countries, has long had to contend with the consequences of destructive industrial practices and climate change, but despite the best efforts of Morales and members of his administration, their concerns have largely been ignored at the UN.

Just last year, in 2010, Bolivian Foreign Minister David Choquehuanca expressed his distress "about the inadequacy of the greenhouse gas reduction commitments made by developed countries in the Copenhagen Accord." His remarks were punctuated by the claim that some experts forecasted a temperature increase "as high as four degrees above pre-industrial levels." "The situation is serious," Choquehuanca asserted. "An increase of temperature of more than one degree above pre-industrial levels would result in the disappearance of our glaciers in the Andes, and the flooding of various islands and coastal zones."

In 2009, directly following the resolution of the General Assembly to designate April 22 "International Mother Earth Day", Morales addressed the press, stating “If we want to safeguard mankind, then we need to safeguard the planet. That is the next major task of the United Nations”. A change to Bolivia's constitution in the same year resulted in an overhaul of the legal system - a shift from which this new law has sprung.

The Law of Mother Earth has as its foundation several of the tenets of indigenous belief, including that human are equal to all other entities. "Our grandparents taught us that we belong to a big family of plants and animals. We believe that everything in the planet forms part of a big family," Choquehuanca said. "We indigenous people can contribute to solving the energy, climate, food and financial crises with our values." The legislation will give the government new legal powers to monitor and control industry in the country.

"Existing laws are not strong enough," said Undarico Pinto, leader of the 3.5m-strong Confederación Sindical Única de Trabajadores Campesinos de Bolivia (a group that helped draft the law). "It will make industry more transparent. It will allow people to regulate industry at national, regional and local levels."

Bolivia will be establishing a Ministry of Mother Earth, but beyond that there are few details about how the legislation will be implemented. What is clear is that Bolivia will have to balance these environmental imperatives against industries - like mining - that contribute to the country's GDP.

Bolivia's successes or failures with implementation may well inform the policies of countries around the world. "It's going to have huge resonance around the world," said Canadian activist Maude Barlow. "It's going to start first with these southern countries trying to protect their land and their people from exploitation, but I think it will be grabbed onto by communities in our countries, for example, fighting the tarsands in Alberta."

Ecuador has enshrined similar aims in its Constitution, and is among the countries that have already shown support for the Bolivian initiative. Other include Nicaragua, Venezuela, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, and Antigua and Barbuda.

National opposition to the law is not anticipated, as Morales' party - the Movement Towards Socialism - holds a majority in both houses of parliament. On April 20, two days before this year's "International Mother Earth Day", Morales will table a draft treaty with the UN, kicking off the debate with the international community.

Read the entire document (in Spanish) here.

UPDATE (Dec. 14, 2011): Canada Withdraws from Kyoto, while Mexico Insists on Green Fund

Related story: Is Progress a Right?

Related story: Peru Approves Indigenous Law as Wikileaks Exposes US Concerns.

Related story: Ecuadorians Win Judgement Against Chevron in Amazon Case, Company Refuses to Pay.

Update May 23, 2011: Turkey considering ecological approach to new constitution. Read more here.

SEED Initiative celebrates entrepreneurs accelerating transition to a Green Economy
April 15, 2011
United Nations Environment Programme

Hindu Perspectives on the Environment - Interview with Pankaj Jain
Progressive Radio Network
April 13, 2011

Bishop calls for ‘green’ trash-free Holy Week
April 11, 2011
Philippine Daily Inquirer

10 Hindu Environmental Teachings
April 10, 2011
The Huffington Post

Green Passover: Taking Responsibility for People and Planet
April 9, 2011
The Huffington Post

10 Teachings on Judaism and the Environment
April 6, 2011
Huffington Post

Fracturing Logic
April 4, 2011
America Magazine

Tibetan Glaciers Melting, Dalai Lama Claims
April 2, 2011
The Huffington Post

Padyatra to Save Yamuna from Pollution
March 22, 2011
Times of India

Solar energy spars with spiritual lands in California
March 3, 2011
New Scientist

Movement to save the Yamuna gains momentum
March 1, 2011
Indian News Post

Green Economy and Environment Governance reform backed by world’s environment ministers
February 24, 2011
United Nations Environment Programme

Forest Conservation Groups in Nepal and Guatamala Win 2011 Sasakawa Prize
February 23, 2011
United Nations Environment Programme

How two per cent of global GDP can trigger greener, smarter growth while fighting poverty
February 21, 2011
United Nations Environment Programme

Hindus back Catholic Bishops on Climate Change policy protecting world’s poor
February 20, 2011
Press Release

Judge in Ecuador fines Chevron $8.6bn in historic indigenous rights case
February 16, 2011
United for Peace of Pierce County

Coal-burning plants defy covenant with Creator
February 6, 2011
The Columbian

International Year of Forests (IYF) - “Celebrating Forests for People”
February 2, 2011
United Nations Environment Programme

Scientists ask Congress to put aside politics, take ‘fresh look’ at climate data
February 1, 2011
The Hill

A Nobel Peace Prize winner finds spiritual values in planting trees
January 24, 2011
The Christian Science Monitor

Ecological wisdom of the ages
January 11, 2011

Noah’s Ark replica shows conservative Christians are embracing green building
January 5, 2011
Washington Post

Hindus back Beatle Paul McCartney’s call to India for a National Vegetarian Day
January 5, 2011

New endowed chair at Yale unites teaching of theology and the environment
January 5, 2011
Yale Daily Bulletin

Doing the right thing on climate change a moral obligation
December 28, 2010
The Register-Guard

The Book of Black Fire: An Eco-Theology of Revelation
Fall-Winter 2010-2011
Conservative Judaism

Biodiversity Year Ends on a High Note - UN General Assembly Backs Resolution - ‘IPCC-for Nature’
December 21, 2010
United Nations Environment Programme

Himalayan monks to launch green movement in Kolkata
December 16, 2010
Indo-Asian News Service

WikiLeaks cables: Dalai Lama called for focus on climate, not politics, in Tibet
December 16, 2010
The Guardian

Advent: Let’s start to heal our planet
December 13, 2010
USA Today

The Risk of Ocean Death from CO2
December 10, 2010

Gift endows interdisciplinary studies of theology and the environment at Yale
December 10, 2010
Press Release

Faith-based Organizations Advocate for Climate Justice
December 8, 2010
International Institute for Sustainable Development (IISD)

Climate justice is focus of four-day Episcopal/Anglican gathering in Dominican Republic
December 6, 2010
Episcopal News Service

Has Environmentalism Lost Its Spiritual Core?
December 6, 2010

If an island state vanishes, is it still a nation?
December 6, 2010
Associated Press

Hindus laud Pope’s interest in solar-powered electric “popemobile”
December 3, 2010

What is an ethical Christmas?
December 3, 2010
Scottish Council for Voluntary Organisations

Vatican has not endorsed genetically modified food
December 2, 2010
National Catholic Reporter

Rvfo-Rakko, “Big Winter”
December 2010
Muscogee Nation News

Building a movement for climate justice in the Episcopal Church
November 30, 2010
Episcopal News Service

Let there be solar
November 30, 2010
The Daily Climate

Vatican scientists urge support for engineered crops
November 30, 2010
New Scientist

Beliefs and Biodiversity: Rediscovering Religion and Conservation in Sumatra
November 2010
Ravenswood Media Newsletter

Climate change failure is moral outrage: Faith leaders
November 28, 2010
BBC News, Scotland

Religion, nature develop connections
November 21, 2010
News Virginian

Billions of trees, cleaner stoves and the power of sugar: 30 Ways in 30 Days to meet Climate Change
November 19, 2010
United Nations Environment Programme

Ecological Civilization
November 19, 2010
Sustainable China Blog

The Hindu Method to Save the Planet
November 15, 2010

Forum on Teilhard Attracts 300
November 13, 2010
The Tablet

Toward a global green economy
November 9, 2010
JoongAng Daily

“30 Ways in 30 Days” rolls out more solutions to climate change challenge
November 8, 2010
United Nations Environment Programme

Program seeks to get religions involved in sustainable farming, food systems
November 5, 2010
Louisville Courier-Journal

The Rise of the Tao
November 5, 2010
New York Times

Time to End War against the Earth
November 4, 2010
The Age

From bamboo bikes to biomass briquettes: UNEP unveils SEED Award Winners
November 3, 2010
United Nations Environment Programme

UNEP launches ‘30 Ways in 30 Days’ to inspire action on climate change
November 1, 2010
United Nations Environment Programme

Historic New Treaty Lays Ground Rules for Sharing Benefits of World’s Wealth of Genetic Resources
October 29, 2010
United Nations Environment Programme

How religion is helping save the dolphin in UP
October 29, 2010

Conservation, religion join to save Ganges dolphin
October 28, 2010

CT Faith Leaders Honored for Energy Stewardship
October 27, 2010

Why did the U.N. proclaim World Interfaith Harmony Week?
October 22, 2010

Nagoya 2010: Report puts economic value of nature on the global political radar
October 20, 2010
United Nations Environment Programme

India set to be first country to publish ‘natural wealth’ accounts
October 20, 2010
The Guardian

Saving North America’s sacred sites
October 18, 2010
The Guardian

Traditional Circle Elder Jake Swamp (Tekaronianeken) Passes to Spirit World
October 16, 2010
North Country Now

Our Commons Future Is Already Here
October 13, 2010

Bill Johnston, a pioneer in interreligious dialogue, passes
October 12, 2010
Irish Jesuit News

Congregations use religion to emphasize environmental awareness
October 11, 2010
The Baltimore Sun

A Hindu Sect Devoted to the Environment
October 7, 2010
New York Times

Incredible array of new species found in remote Papua New Guinea
October 6, 2010
Conservation International Press Release

“30 Ways in 30 Days” to inspire action on reducing emissions and transition to global Green Economy
October 5, 2010
United Nations Environment Programme

Hindus want world to take water insecurity risk more seriously
October 1, 2010

On Gandhi’s Birthday, GreenFaith Announces Hindu and Jain Scholar in Residence
October 1, 2010

Save the planet – a message from another world
September 27, 2010
The Guardian

The Vatican goes green
September 27, 2010

Mixed Reception for UN Anti-poverty Action Review
September 27, 2010
Ecumenical News International

The costs of cheap meat
September 24, 2010
Chicago Tribune

Root Recall
September 22, 2010
The Hindu

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