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<<Name of Dean or Other Recipient>>
<<Name of School>>
<<City>>, <<State>>, <<Zip>>
Subject: How <<Name of School>> and its Students Would Benefit from a Course on Earth Law
Dear <<Name of Dean or Other Recipient>>:
I am <<Student name>> writing to urge you to offer a course on Earth Law, an emerging field of ecocentric law (i.e., Earth-centered law) that aims to harmonize the human legal system with the laws of nature. With the current climate crisis and biodiversity loss, it is more important than ever to equip students with the knowledge and skills to address these challenges through innovative legal solutions.
Earth Law encompasses a range of transformative legal frameworks, including the rights of nature, the rights of future generations, human environmental rights, the crime of ecocide, legal guardianship of nature, Indigenous legalities, and ecocentric corporate governance. This course will provide students with a comprehensive understanding of these frameworks and their application in real-world situations.
One of the primary issues with the current legal system is its focus on property ownership of nature, which stems from a colonial perspective. Earth Law offers an alternative approach that recognizes the intrinsic value of nature and promotes legal solutions that are in harmony with the environment. This approach is rapidly gaining momentum. For example, nature now has rights in over 30 countries (at some level of government). The campaign to criminalize "ecocide," the mass destruction of nature, is also taking off, with the European Union, small island nations such as Vanuatu, and even the International Court of Justice showing initial support. Companies are also giving a voice to ecosystems, such as by putting nature on their boards of directors. I believe that Earth Law will only become more relevant in the coming years.
Teaching Earth Law at <<Name of School>> would give students the opportunity to understand how the current legal system is failing to protect the environment and provide them with the tools to develop new legal frameworks that better protect the planet. It will also attract top, inspired talent interested in Earth Law, and solidify <Name of School>'s reputation as an innovative and forward-thinking institution.
I recommend the use of the law school coursebook on Earth Law, entitled Earth Law: Emerging Ecocentric Law-A Guide for Practitioners (Aspen Series, 2022), which includes contributions from top practitioners from around the world in the full suite of interconnected Earth Law fields. The book is suitable for law students and undergraduate students alike and has been adopted by several universities and law schools. Additionally, students could work on real-world projects with organizations that specialize in Earth Law, such as Earth Law Center.
In conclusion, I strongly believe that teaching a course on Earth Law is essential in preparing students to tackle the most pressing environmental challenges. I urge you to consider this request and take steps to incorporate this important course into <<Name of School>>'s curriculum.