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Ecological jurisprudence and the natural environment’s legal standing

In 2008, Ecuador enshrined the rights of nature in its constitution. But where is such jurisprudential thinking at in Australia? Here, property and commercial lawyer Mieke Elzer discusses the idea of nature’s rights at law, particularly in the wake of the successful Sharma appeal.

user iconRobyn Tongol 18 March 2024 Podcast
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In this episode of The Lawyers Weekly Show, host Jerome Doraisamy speaks with Attwood Marshall lawyer Mieke Elzer about the myriad forms of environmental law and how the earth law stream emerges from it, what is meant by ecological jurisprudence and where we’re at with such legal considerations, the notion that the natural environment – from trees to oceans – can or should have legal standing, and where Australia sits in relation to global counterparts on such questions.

Elzer also delves into the likelihood or otherwise that the natural environment can or will be recognised in Australian law, increasing litigation being seen or to be seen in this space, what it would take for a test case to emerge on the legal standing of the natural environment, bringing the judiciary along for the journey in shifting mindsets, and how all legal practitioners can be more environmentally conscious in their daily operations – both for the community and for themselves.


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