Ecocide Laws in Australia: What’s Possible?

September 14, 2022
12:00 pm - 2:00 pm (AEST)
Online (via Zoom)

Join us for an important update from 'Ecocide Laws Australia', about the potential of creating ecocide laws in Australia.


Around the world, lawyers and environmentalists are advocating for the law of ecocide to be recognised in international law. There are various definitions of 'Ecocide' - a simple definition is that ecocide is "large scale damage and destruction of ecosystems causing severe harm to nature which is widespread or long term'.

In Australia, a group of lawyers, academic researchers and law students have created 'Ecocide Laws Australia', a working group auspiced by the Australian Earth Laws Alliance (AELA), which is exploring how ecocide laws might be created and implemented in Australia.

Featuring Rob White, Gwynn MacCarrick, Danielle Celermajer, Anthony Burke and Michelle Maloney, this webinar will provide an update about the key issues currently being addressed by the working group, and explore what Australian ecocide laws might look like.


ROB WHITE - Rob White is Adjunct (Distinguished Professor) at the University of Tasmania. He has written extensively about green criminology, eco-justice and climate politics. Among his recent books are Climate Change Criminology (Bristol University Press, 2018), The Extinction Curve (with John van der Velden, Emerald Press, 2021) and Theorising Green Criminology (Routledge, 2022).

GWYNN MACCARRICK - Dr Gwynn MacCarrick currently works in Aboriginal legal services in Northern Queensland and leads ecocide research within the Australian Earth Laws Alliance (AELA). Gwynn was formerly a lecturer at the University of Tasmania (UTAS) Law School, and has worked as an international law practitioner, international counsel, refugee lawyer, domestic criminal lawyer, university lecturer and academic. She has had extensive international field experience and brings a real-world applied focus to her research and teaching. Gwynn was a leading legal authority in the International Monsanto Ecocide Tribunal (2016-2017) and was a panelist and contributing author for the 2019 Citizen's Inquiry into the Health of the Darling/Barka River.

DANIELLE CELERMAJER - Danielle Celermajer is a Professor of Sociology and Criminology at the University of Sydney, Deputy Director of the Sydney Environment Institute and lead of the Multispecies Justice project. Her latest book, Summertime (Penguin Random House, 2021) was written in recognition of the critical urgency of conveying the complex conceptual recognition of the multispecies harms of the climate catastrophe in ways that can provoke affect and hence action. Summertime was shortlisted for the Victorian Premier’s Literary Awards for non-fiction.

ANTHONY BURKE - Anthony Burke teaches in the School of Humanities and Social Sciences at UNSW Canberra (2008-), and previously worked in the School of Social Sciences and International Studies at UNSW in Sydney (2005-7) and the Universities of Adelaide (2001-4) and Queensland (2001), and worked for two years as a research officer in the Senate's environment, arts and communications committee (1999-2000), where he co-authored reports on the ABC, the Jabiluka uranium mine and Australia's response to climate change. Anthony is a leading international scholar in the areas of international security studies, international ethics, war and peace, and political and international relations theory. His current interests include cosmopolitanism, new security agendas and conflicts, war and peace, security ethics, the posthuman, and climate change.

MICHELLE MALONEY - Dr Michelle Maloney is Co-Founder and National Convenor of the Australian Earth Laws Alliance (AELA), Adjunct Senior Fellow, Law Futures Centre, Griffith University; and Director of the New Economy Network Australia (NENA) and Future Dreaming Australia. She advocates for systems change, in order to shift industrialised societies from a human-centred, to an Earth centred governance system.