Universal Declaration of Material Rights

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= "If we, mankind, would treat materials in a just manner, similar to the manner in which people should be treated, we would create a world with a future".

URL = http://theuniversaldeclarationofmaterialrights.org/ text

Contextual Citation

“Earth is the only rightful owner of all raw materials and all matter and there is only one ‘permanent member’ who has a real right of veto: Nature.”

- Universal Declaration of Material Rights


by Alessandro Speccher:

"It has been observed that we keep track of what we consider “precious” and forget what we deem “valueless.” As a matter of fact, identity is more than the sum of its characteristics, it suggests the idea that it is something that must not be lost and must be protected. How can we organise and set up a document for material identity?

Identity management would require keeping track of how the identity bearer evolves and changes.

The study of such evolution would create awareness which in turn could lead to a real improvement of processes. Thus, a building to be demolished and hence valueless would become a temporary depot of materials, in this way we could reward manufacturers who create objects meant to last (and not to break down), to be updated (instead of becoming obsolete) and to become an icon instead of going out of fashion.

With identity re-appropriation we can resume talk about rights, the Universal Declaration of Material Rights and its analogies with the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. If we accept treating materials as we would like to be treated ourselves, we would come to a radical conclusion: no-one can appropriate for themselves materials provided by our closed system. In the linear production chain, capital is built into materials, this leads to speculation on raw materials and thus damaging nature. To avoid all this, Earth itself must be recognised with the right to sovereignty, this does not mean that human beings cannot use its resources, but rather have the power to manage them responsibly. Managing has nothing to do with ownership, it is about taking responsibility. Taking care and not possessing. In the Turntoo Model, where contracts are based on the product-as-a-service concept, equipped with an identity, we go back to the “prudent man” rule.

Identity and responsibility, the former becomes the expression of scientific and mechanistic logics and thought; the latter, the representation of a holistic, ethical and philosophical approach. They must work as one and in synergy find a swift and effective solution to environmental problems caused by the linear economy. To change our relationship with our planet we need both a new economic system and a cultural shift. If we really want to improve our relationship with Earth, we must change the soul of our economy and society." (http://www.renewablematter.eu/en/art/1101/Recognising_Resources_Are_Limited_by_Granting_Them_an_Identity)