Lake Erie Bill of Rights: Stifled by All Three Branches Yet Still Significant
81 Ohio State Law Journal Online 227 (2020)
12 Pages Posted: 3 Dec 2020
Date Written: October 20, 2020
The Lake Erie Bill of Rights (LEBOR), declaring that Lake Erie has enforceable rights, received national and international attention when voters added it to the City of Toledo, Ohio charter in 2019. This innovative “rights of nature” ordinance held out the promise of a new legal tool to combat the harmful algal blooms which annually plague Lake Erie. But just a year later LEBOR was dead. This essay examines LEBOR and its genesis, describes and evaluates the roles all three branches of government played in killing the ordinance, and argues that even after its demise LEBOR remains highly significant as a landmark law and a powerful message.
Keywords: Lake Erie, rights of nature, algae
JEL Classification: K32
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation