The Earth Charter

A bold, courageously optimistic vision towards a better world

The Earth Charter serves as the ethical framework for the Cultural Innovations in Action. It is a global Declaration of Interdependence that is the result of an unprecedented open drafting process involving thousands of people in 78 countries over the course of ten years.

It was launched at The Hague Peace Palace in 2000 where Jan Roberts was recognized as heading up the major effort in the US. Its sixteen principles for universal human rights, economic justice, respect for nature and a culture of peace are woven into the themes for the CIA video shows.


  • Conceived in 1987 at UN Environment & Development Conference and presented at Rio Earth Summit in 1992.
  • Grassroots drafting initiative launched in 1994 by Mikhail Gorbachev, then President & Founder of Green Cross International, Maurice Strong, UN Undersecretary General, and Rudd Lubbers, former Prime Minister of the Netherlands.
  • Earth Charter Committees formed to oversee grassroots input into unprecedented open drafting process around the world (Thousands of people in 78 countries involved over the course of ten years).
  • Launched at The Hague Peace Palace in June 2000 with Jan Roberts, Founder of Earth Charter U.S., recognized as leading the major effort in the U.S.

What It Is

A Global Declaration for Universal Responsibility for a caring, sustainable and peaceful world.

Core Value is the Interdependence of All Life with 16 principles on respect for nature, universal human rights, economic justice, participatory democracy, and a culture of non-violence and peace.

Rests on more than 50 United Nations declarations plus over 200 NGO agreements, and international law instruments. It is influenced by the scientific worldview including contemporary cosmology, physics, and ecology. It draws on the wisdom of the world’s religions and philosophical traditions. It reflects the social movements associated with human rights, democracy, gender equality, civil society, disarmament and peace. It builds on the seven UN summit conferences on children, the environment, human rights, population, women, social development and the city held during the 1990’s. Draws from ancient and current sustainability practices.

Endorsed by over 6,000 organizations including: US Conference of Mayors, Calvert Fund Ltd., Worldwide Federation of Engineering Organizations (8 million members), Parliament of World Religions, International Academy of Science, International Sierra Club, World Conservation Congress and International Council for Local Environmental Initiatives.

Earth Charter Resources

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