The Rights of Nature Project
Welcome to Iura Naturae, the latest international project from Oliver Windridge. Using his 15 years’ experience in human rights, international criminal law, anti-corruption and corporate responsibility, at Iura Naturae Oliver will use litigation, policy and advocacy tools focused solely on the environment, nature and wildlife.
As Iura Naturae launches, Oliver sat down for a Q&A.
Why the name Iura Naturae?
Whilst Latin is by no means global, its use is an attempt to demonstrate the fact that many environmental rights transcend borders and boundaries. By choosing the Latin term “rights of nature” the hope is to reinforce this idea of a global movement that identifies across the world rather than one specific country or region.
How does your experience as an international human rights lawyer help?
Its true that until now, my international practice has been largely focused on humans and peoples’ in the ordinary sense of the words. For example, litigating on behalf of human rights defenders, drafting submission for sanctions on human rights violators and writing reports on atrocities. At Iura Naturae I’m seeking to use that experience and repurpose it for use on environmental cases. I believe we can learn a lot from decades of human rights work as it relates to the environment and the tools at our disposal.
What kinds of work will Iura Naturae take on?
For maximum impact, I want Iura Naturae to engage at several levels. First, using existing tools in a way that focuses on environmental action. For example, can we use litigation, or other tools of pressure in the private and public sectors? How do we incorporate an environmental element to existing human rights work? Second, I want to foster thinking beyond those tools in existence and imagine the next generation of effective and innovative mechanisms, things that are not yet in existence but need to be in order to move forward.