The Arts Front Environment Group is leading arts sector's response to the environmental and climate change emergency.
Climate change presents the single biggest threat to development, and its widespread, unprecedented impacts disproportionately burden the poorest and most vulnerable. Urgent action to combat climate change and minimize its disruptions is integral to the successful implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals.
The Environment group is collaborating in generating new ways to build momentum, inspire engagement and shift the environmental and climate change narrative in Australia.
The Environmental Group is adopting Article 2 and Article 3 of the Draft Universal Declaration of the Rights of Mother Earth:
Article 2. Fundamental rights of Mother Earth: Mother Earth has the right to exist, to persist and to continue the vital cycles, structures, functions and processes that sustain all beings
Article 3. Fundamental rights and freedoms of all beings
Every being has:
- (a) the right to exist;
- (b) the right to habitat or a place to be;
- (c) the right to participate in accordance with its nature in the ever-renewing processes of Mother Earth;
- (d) the right to maintain its identity and integrity as a distinct, self-regulating being;
- (e) the right to be free from pollution, genetic contamination and human
- modifications of its structure or functioning that threaten its integrity or healthy functioning; and
- (f) the freedom to relate to other beings and to participate in communities of beings in accordance with its nature
Environment Principles (Draft Summary):
- Asserting that arts and cultures can help reset our relationship with the complex natural systems of which we are one part
- Acknowledging that the arts and cultural sector can lead by example by living consciously as part of natural systems, adopting practices and protocols that consider the impact - both physical and cultural - of our practice on the natural world we are part of.
- Respecting that nature and culture are part of an interconnected system, and that culture itself is an ecosystem, diverse and interconnected with all living systems.
- Proposing that arts and culture can assist in developing governance structures that are not based around economic development, but drawing on biological and ecological systems (biomimetic design) to create ecologically sensitive models.
- Understanding and appreciating that, if we are to treat culture as an ecosystem, people in the arts and culture sector need access to basic services and basic standard of living, as do all others.
- Recognising the role of arts and culture in responding to biodiversity loss, understanding climate change and helping communities deal with environmental change.
- Noting that arts and culture can assist in shifting the model of environmental protection from “locked up” conservation to active stewardship.
- Acknowledging the absence of arts and culture in the SDGs and acknowledging the contradictions and problematic aspects of the SDGs more broadly.
Further work around the layers and value systems of arts and culture in the environment i.e arts as advocacy and activism, arts as tool for recovery and dealing with loss, arts as a method to translate complex scientific issues into tangible and embodied experiences, artistic thinking and cultural systems as a way to understand complex patterns and changes and the interconnected nature of our social, cultural, political and biological ecosystems
Group Administrators (2)
Central to the AELA’s Earth Arts Program is the biennial Rights of Nature Australia (RONA) week, which features an international conference, public lectures, Peoples’ Tribunal, art exhibitions and other events. Upcoming RONA biennials are scheduled for October 2020 and October 2022. RONA2020 will be the third biennial event, with previous RONA events held in October 2016 (RONA16) and October 2018 (RONA18).