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Confluence of the Milwaukee and Menominee Rivers in MilwaukeeShutterstock

MILWAUKEE, Wisconsin (LifeSiteNews) — “Nature” now has equal rights to human beings in Milwaukee County after the passage of a resolution that comes from a United Nations-backed group.

The county board approved a “rights of nature” resolution on Friday, which is “a sacred idea and policy to protect Southeastern Wisconsin’s waterways and bodies of water from human harm.”

The county supports the Menominee Tribe’s internal resolution “recognizing the inherent rights of the Menominee River to flourish and naturally exist.” It flows from the tribe’s Earth worship, which includes the erroneous belief that “the first Menominee human was originally a bear,” as noted by The Daily Wire.

An initial version declared the resolution was “symbolic in nature,” but the edited legislation removed that portion. The policy “recognizes Milwaukee County’s bodies of water as integral and essential to the environment.”

Language from the Intergovernmental Science-Policy Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services (IPBES) calls “Rights of Nature” a “legal instrument.” The group “is not a United Nations body” but receives “secretariat services” from the U.N.

The “rights of nature” description states:

[The policy]enables nature, wholly or partly, i.e. ecosystems or species, to have inherent rights and legally should have the same protection as people and corporations; that ecosystems and species have legal rights to exist, thrive and regenerate. It enables the defense of the environment in court – not only for the benefit of people, but for the sake of nature itself.

A 1972 law review article called “Should Trees Have Standing?” laid the groundwork for “rights of nature” to establish legal parity between nature and humans.

France agreed trees should have standing in 2018, when it proclaimed they “should be considered as a subject of law, including when laws regarding human property are involved,” as previously reported by LifeSiteNews.

The idea of “rights” for nature has drawn criticism from conservative ethicist Wesley Smith, who sees it as a way to subvert economic activity.

“At the very least, ‘nature rights’ would require us to give equal consideration to creatures and other organisms that might be impacted adversely by human activities,” he wrote in The Daily Caller in 2011. The idea would “open the courtroom doors to radical environmentalist lawyers who would surely fire a continual barrage of lawsuits seeking to uphold the rights of their animal and vegetable clients.”