The destruction caused by recurrent forest fires has had significant consequences on watersheds, springs, slopes, wetlands, forests, and the biodiversity that inhabits them. 

Faced with the inadequacy of traditional environmental law, the Rights of Nature are presented as a new form of jurisprudence that recognizes Nature as a legal subject.

The consideration of the rights of nature is an ethical and necessary response to restore the balance and preserve the biocultural richness of our territory.

BioBio tribunal 11 derechos de la naturaleza


The Biobío region, originally characterized by a large expression of biodiversity from the Andes Mountains, through the Coastal and Nahuelbuta mountain ranges, to the Pacific Ocean, has been described in recent years as a representation of the implementation and consequences of the forestry model in the territories. Therefore, it has suffered -forcibly- a transition to homogeneous landscapes composed mainly of pine and eucalyptus monoculture.

The forestry model, understood as the entire production cycle from nurseries to the commercialization and export of products derived from wood processing, has been recognized by the communities as an actor of domination and depredation of the life of the communities and Nature, being part of the model imposed by the Dictatorship through Decree Law No. 701, which is currently under study for reform. 

From rural to urban areas, the effects of this model on human communities and various ecological systems have been identified, impacts such as: contamination and reduction of water flow, loss of soil fertility and its capacity to sustain biodiversity, loss of flora and vegetation, and contamination of diverse elements of the environment associated with event of forest fires.

Región biobio


Under this set context, as predicted by previous large-scale events such as that of 2017, during the summer of 2023 a firestorm spread covering around 326,000 hectares between the regions of Ñuble and Araucanía. Of the burned area, 61.3% corresponds to forest monoculture and 9.4% to native forest. Specifically in the Biobío region, a specific event – “Santa Ana”- burned a total of 112,622 hectares, which includes 60% of the commune of Santa Juana and more than 40% of the commune of Nacimiento.

Bearing in mind the proximity of the summer of 2024 and the threats and risks of fires, the affected communities and victims have evaluated various ways to be able to face these fires. These have mainly involved the reparation of the affected human communities, but no reparation or preventive measures have been adopted with respect to Nature. Thus, in the Chilean legal system there is no guarantee or specific legal mechanism related to the recognition and visibility of the violation of the rights of nature in our environment, from a biocentric perspective.

Incendios forestales arrasan con todo a su paso en la región de BioBio


contamination and decrease in water flow


loss of soil fertility


Loss of fauna and flora

Therefore, the audience of the local Tribunal for the Rights of Nature means an opportunity that allows, on one hand, the strengthening of the local organizations and communities as well as to recognize the rights of the Biobío River, the Nahuelbuta mountain range and Queule – a National Monument – all affected by the fires and the monoculture of pine and eucalyptus trees.




The International Tribunal for the Rights of Nature is an international institution created by citizens to investigate violations of the Rights of Nature. The Tribunal creates a forum for people from all over the world to speak out on behalf of Nature and protest the destruction of the Earth, encouraged by corporations with the blessing of governments. In this way, the Tribunal makes conflicts and their actors visible and makes legal recommendations on the protection and restoration of the Earth as an example of jurisprudence for grassroots communities struggling to protect ecosystems. The Tribunal also focuses on supporting Indigenous Peoples to raise their voices and share the impacts they see on their territories as stewards of the Earth. It is a space to share alternatives on land, water and culture with the global community. The Tribunal’s verdicts, if applied at the highest level, could provide a necessary tool in the struggle for environmental protection and justice.

For more information on the Rights of Nature Tribunal, click here.

International Rights of Nature Tribunal

Aquí encontrarán los jueces y sus biografías

Images of @Carla Duran


Alliance for the Defense of the Rights of Nature of the Biobío River

We are an alliance composed of various organizations in Chile, which have been convened to promote the perspective of the rights of nature as a valid and necessary way to address the impact on the rights of the Biobío River and other biocultural elements. The organizations that make up this alliance are the following: