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Exploring the Legal Status of Nature – Melbourne Workshop

On Friday 11th August, AELA and CREEL/Melbourne Law School hosted  a workshop called “New Developments in the Legal Status of Rivers”, which formed part of AELA’s “Exploring the Legal Status of Nature” project. For a copy of the event flyer, please click here.

Chair: Professor Christine Parker, University of Melbourne

The findings from the day are summarised in the Workshop Report.

Presentations and Recordings:

To read speaker presentations, please click on the title of the presentations below









In 2017, four rivers have been given the status of legal persons: the Whanganui in NZ, the Ganges and Yamuna Rivers in India and the Rio Atrato in Colombia. In Victoria, the state government has committed to establishing the 'Birrarung Council' to be the voice of the Yarra River. These unprecedented developments have fundamentally altered the legal status of rivers in law. Will they also help us to protect them?

This workshop was also part of a broader research and publication project run by the Australian Earth Laws Alliance on the legal status of nature, and provided an opportunity to contribute to an emerging field of law and policy.

Researchers, legal practitioners and students were invited to a workshop at Melbourne Law School on Friday 11 August 2017, to hear more about these fascinating developments in the legal status of rivers. This workshop was jointly hosted by the Australian Earth Laws Alliance and the Centre of Resources, Energy and Environment Law (CREEL).