Wild Virginia interviewed the Virginia Community Rights Network (VACRN) about their work in elevating the rights of Nature and Communities who value nature as a whole. VACRN represents a new paradigm in how to fight for the environment, as part of the environment. VACRN joins other grassroots groups protecting the Rights of Nature, and was founded after being introduced to a Community Bill of Rights in the Fall of 2017, during their fight against the Atlantic Coast Pipeline (ACP).

In the Spring of 2020, they were invited to join a growing number of states who make up the National Community Rights Network, in partnership with Community Environmental Legal Defense Fund (CELDF). VACRN was drawn to this framework when they became frustrated at ‘checking all the boxes and jumping through all the hoops’ without much result in their fight against the ACP. They felt they had done everything they could within the existing framework, and found it is essentially geared towards regulating “We the People” and not polluters. As their website states, “the belief that Nature – the species and ecosystems that comprise our world – has inherent rights has proven to be a galvanizing idea.”

Listen to the podcast interview here. By Grace Tuttle