Lake Erie Bill of Rights
The Lake Erie Bill of Rights (LEBOR) was a grassroots-led charter amendment proposed by Toledoans for Safe Water in 2018 in response to the Water Crisis. Residents collected over 10,500 petition signatures to place the amendment on the general election ballot. The amendment, endorsed by Lake Erie Advocates, codified the inalienable rights of Lake Erie - the rights to exist, flourish, and naturally evolve. Despite many attempts to deny petitioners ballot access, the groups prevailed and the amendment passed with 61% of the vote in February of 2019.
Well-funded corporate opposition from industry (such as the Ohio Chamber of Commerce, the farm bureau, and the oil and gas industry) and the state of Ohio sought to overturn the law, despite being democratically enacted. LEBOR was the first Rights of Nature law for a specific ecosystem in the US. The law was overturned in February of 2020 but the remains a major victory for the global Rights of Nature Movement.