A speaker at the World Economic Forum (WEF) conference in Davos, Switzerland this week called for “ecocide” laws that would punish crimes against nature in the same way genocide is prosecuted.

Jojo Mehta, the co-founder and CEO of Stop Ecocide International, casually compared the side effects of “farming,” “fishing,” and energy production to mass murder and torture. Her organization is currently working with diplomats, politicians, corporations, NGOs, and academics to advocate for the recognition of such acts of “ecocide” as serious crimes.

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“Ecocide is becoming better known around the world,” Mehta said.

“The concept is generally [understood as] mass damage and destruction of nature. But legally speaking, what our organization and other collaborators aim to do is to have this recognized legally as a serious crime. One of the issues that pervade all of this discussion is that we have a kind of cultural very ingrained habit of not taking damage to nature as seriously as we take damage to people and property.

If you’re campaigning for human rights, at least you know mass murder, torture, and all of these things are serious crimes. But there’s no equivalent in the environmental space. Unlike an international crime like genocide, that involves a specific intent, with ecocide what we see is actually what people are trying to do, what businesses are trying to do, is make money, is farm, is fish, is do all of these things that produce energy and so on. But what’s missing is the awareness and conscience around the side effects, around the collateral damage that happens with that.”

In another clip, Mehta says environmentalists and WEF speakers get into the habit of talking about climate disaster as if it is an inevitability. But, she argues, this covers up the fact that we can prevent them from happening here and now through legal “deterrence and prevention” measures.

By introducing legislation against ecocide, the international criminal courts as well as national governments could go after energy companies, agriculture, and others deemed to be offenders and prosecute them for future disasters that will allegedly occur according to scientists’ predictions.

Shane Devine is a writer covering politics, economics, and culture for Valuetainment. Follow Shane on X (Twitter).

1 comment

  • Matthew 10:31 says that we are worth more than many sparrows. It is evil to make man to the same level as animals and plants. It is evil to make a human life count for nothing.

    God created us to dominate the world not animals and plants to dominate.

    Anthony, Sydney