It would radically reframe how we approach environmental destruction. A law against ecocide stems from a fundamentally different point of view than current law and regulations. It is a
deontological [meaning: the study of the nature of duty] point of view.
Now a deontological perspective starts from the premise that we have a duty of care to the earth. We have an obligation, and from that idea flows a golden rule, a sacred rule, which is where this
principle of do no harm comes into being. We have a legal duty to care for the earth. Within existing environmental law, we haven’t established that duty of care. It doesn’t exist. This law is
really about shifting our vision and our understanding away from a very silo, narrow view.
So a deontological perspective comes from a very different place. It is a fundamental turning around from where we are now and saying, okay, let’s start from a completely different premise here.
It’s saying let’s start from the first duty that we have, which is to do no harm. Where does that take us then? If it’s really “do no harm,” then we have to start from the premise of saying we
criminalize mass damage and destruction to the earth. We draw a line in the sand, and say we’re not going to do that anymore.
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