The Whanganui River in New Zealand has received recognition as a person, similar to a corporation. The New Zealand government and a Maori nation have reached an agreement where the river becomes a legal entity.
The Whanganui River runs for about 175 miles through New Zealand’s North Island. It has been one of the main routes inland for as long as the island has been settled. As one of the first rivers explored by the Maori when they first settled New Zealand and a heavily settled area by the Maori, it is considered a special treasure.
The Whanganui River is now a protected entity. Representatives from the local Maori people and the New Zealand government will act as custodians guarding the river’s interests.
Whanganui River photo via Shutterstock