Charter of the Social Ecological Union
1. General Purpose:
1.1 The international public organization Social Ecological Union International, hereinafter referred to as the SEU, is an international, nongovernmental, nonprofit public ecological association of individuals and groups. The SEU's activities are dedicated to achieving harmony between society and nature, and to preserving and restoring the natural and cultural environments against activities that destroy natural and spiritual values, and endanger people's health.
1.2. The SEU is active in the territories of the Russian Federation and other states where its structure affiliates were established in a legal way. The SEU has international status.
1.3 In its activities, the SEU acts in accordance with Russian Federation Constitution and laws, norms of international law, the legislation of sovereign states, and the present Charter.
1.4 The SEU acts in accordance to the voluntary, equal rights, openness, self-governance and legality principles.
1.5 The SEU Council is located in Moscow.
2. Goals and Tasks of the SEU:
2.1 The goal of the SEU is to unify the SEU members' intellectual, material and organizational potential for protecting the Earth and its inhabitants, for preserving and restoring peoples' natural and cultural heritage and their physical and spiritual health, and for the promotion of environmental security and sustainable development.
2.2. The tasks of the SEU:
- formation of an ecological worldview, promotion of knowledge about the conditions of the natural and cultural environments, experience and principles of activities in order to avert an ecological crisis of local and global proportions;
- development of ecological glasnost, providing society with information about the environment and conditions of human health;
- rendering global assistance to citizens and their organizations as well as governments in efforts to protect and restore natural and cultural heritages, clean up of the environment, and providing for environmental security and sustainable development;
- organization of public ecological control and ecological monitoring of the conditions of the environment, natural and cultural values and monuments, and human health;
- organization of public ecological control to ensure observance of legislation relating to the use of natural resources, securing environmental safety as well as of environmental and cultural values and monuments, human rights, and the health of the population;
- assistance with improving acting environmental protection legislation and rendering global assistance to governmental organs in the fight with violation of the legislation;
- introduction of energy and resource efficient and ecologically safe techniques and technology in all fields of economic activities;
- assistance in safeguarding the protection, restoration and rational use of the environment and natural resources.
3. Rights and Obligations of the SEU:
3.1. To achieve goals stated in its Charter SEU has right to:
- distribute information about its work;
- participate in decision making process of state government entities and local self-government entities in order provided by the Russian Federal Law "On public unions" and other laws;
- to hold meetings, demonstrations, rallies and picketing;
- to found media and to perform publishing;
- to represent and to defend its rights, legal interests of its members and other citizens in governmental entities, local self-government entities and public unions;
- to perform other activities provided by the legislation on public unions;
- to step forward with initiatives relating to social life and to file proposals to the governmental entities.
3.2. The SEU is obliged:
- to observe Russian legislation, commonly accepted principles and norms of the international laws relating to its activities field, and the norms provided by the present Charter;
- to publish annual report on its property use or to provide for this report accessibility;
- to annually inform the entity that has registered the SEU about the continuation of its activities, providing real address of constantly functioning governing body, its title and data on SEU directors in amount of information provided for state register of the organizations;
- to provide, upon the request of the entity that has registered the SEU, decisions of its governing body, as well as annual and quarterly reports on its activities in the amount requested for tax control entities;
- to admit the representatives of the entity that has registered SEU to the events, organized by SEU, as well as to aid them in getting acquainted with the SEU activities aimed on achieving the goals and observing the Russian legislation.
4. The SEU collective and individual members. Their rights and obligations:
4.1. Collective members of the SEU can be nongovernmental organizations; or citizens that uphold the present Charter and SEU program documents and conduct activities complying with the goals and tasks of the SEU.
4.2. Admittance as a member of the SEU is carried out by the SEU Council on the basis of a declaration by a citizen or association that is then confirmed at the SEU Conference at which the necessary documents are presented. The rule of admittance is adopted by SEU Conference.
4.3. SEU Members who compromise the SEU in their activities or do not fulfill their responsibilities to the SEU can be excluded from membership of the SEU by the Council by a majority 2/3 vote of the selected members of the Council that is confirmed at the next SEU conference.
Collective members of SEU take part in SEU activities through their plenipotentiaries.
4.3. Members of the SEU have the following rights:
- to elect delegates to the SEU conference;
- to participate in all activities and programs of the SEU;
- to nominate and be elected for elective bodies of the SEU;
- to establish a branch office of the SEU that corresponds with their sphere of activities;
- access to all information in possession of the SEU, its organs, departments and other bodies;
- priority assistance from the SEU;
- priority access to published materials of the SEU;
- to organize actions and activities necessary for fulfilling their tasks in accordance with the SEU Charter;
- to conduct public ecological control of the environment, natural and cultural heritage and monuments, and people's health;
- to act as a public inspection to ensure that legislation is upheld in the areas of resource use; protection of natural and cultural heritage and monuments; protection of the environment; the rights and health of people, and to guarantee ecological security;
- to use the emblem and other symbols of the SEU in their own emblems, symbols and trademark in support of any actions or activities, which are in accordance with the declared goals and tasks of the SEU, and on any published materials that uphold those goals and tasks;
- to freely withdraw their membership from the SEU upon presentation of a declaration to the SEU Council.
4.4. Members are obligated to the following:
- to uphold the SEU Charter and program documents in their activities;
- to present timely and complete information necessary for SEU business upon the request of SEU entities, including CCI or other members of the SEU;
- to actively participate in activities consistent with the goals and tasks of the SEU;
- to assist other SEU members in their environmental activities in whatever way possible;
- to disseminate information about the activities of the SEU, its results, goals and tasks.
5. Organizing Principles of the SEU's Activities, its structure:
5.1. The main unifying principle of the SEU is exchange and provision of the most full and reliable information possible.
5.2. The SEU activities are founded on principles of self-organization, self-government and self-financing.
5.3. According to the field of activities the SEU Members can create branches of the SEU, its structural affiliates.
5.4. The SEU affiliates independently resolve their internal affairs, including questions of structure, directions, and forms and methods of activity as long as they are not in opposition with the present Charter. The SEU affiliates are acting according to the SEU Charter or according to the own charters that do not contradict the SEU Charter.
5.5. The Conference is the leading organ of the SEU affiliates, acting according to the SEU Charter, at least once in 3 years. The conference is called by the governing body of affiliate. The extraordinary Conference is called by the initiative of governing body or revision commission of the affiliate. The Conference has legitimacy when more than half of the members of affiliate are present and the decisions are adopted by the simple majority of votes.
The meeting (conference) defines the activities of the affiliate, elects governing body and revision commission for the three year period, adopts their reports and define their competence, resolves other affiliate activities problems.
5.6. The SEU and their structural affiliates rights on property management are defined by the present legislation and SEU document.
5.7. The SEU has rights to establish affiliates and offices abroad, acting according to the ruling, confirmed by the SEU Council, and present legislation.
6. Administrative Organs of the SEU:
6.1. The SEU Conference is the leading organ of the SEU.
6.2. The conference is called by the Council of the SEU in accordance with decision of the previous conference or by demand of no less than 1/3 of the SEU's collective members and branches, and is held at least once in 3 years.
The extraordinary Conference is called by the SEU Council initiative or Revision Commission.
6.3. The order of delegate election to the conference is defined by the SEU Council.
6.4. The Conference:
- hears and approves the reports of the SEU Council, of the Revision Commission; and evaluates their work, as well as that of the programs of the SEU;
- approves or abolishes decisions that were taken by the SEU Council during the period in between conferences if needed;
- elects members of the SEU Council, the Revision Commission for three year period;
- convenes programs for various tasks, adopts program coordinators who are participating in the SEU Council with the advisory vote right;
- decides on reorganization or liquidation of the SEU;
- discusses and accepts programmatic documents;
- takes decisions regarding changes in or additions to the present Charter;
- takes decisions on conducting international actions on the part of the SEU.
Conference decisions are accepted on the basis of simple majority vote by participating representatives of member groups and SEU branches (with the exception of those cases so indicated by this Charter), if more than half of the delegates are present.
Members and branches of the SEU have the right to decide whether to participate in programs and actions aiming to protect the environment that the Conference established or decided to undertake.
6.5. The Elective Organs of the SEU include:
The Council of the International Social Ecological Union; and
The Revision Commission.
These organs are elected at the SEU conference by secret ballot for a three year period.
6.6. The Council of the SEU:
- is constantly acting governing body of the SEU;
- in the period between conferences, it acts on behalf of the SEU on questions concerning the relations of the SEU and other organizations;
- has the right to represent SEU legally;
- takes responsibility for the activities of the Center for Coordination and Information (CCI);
- confirms the SEU symbols;
- appoints Director of the CCI;
- organizes actions and projects for protection of the environment;
- organizes manufacturing and economic activities of the SEU, acts in the name of the SEU in the creation of enterprises, commercial organizations, etc. necessary for realizing the SEU's activities listed in the Charter;
- as necessary, it organizes representative and programs on different activities and formulates other organs of the SEU;
- undertakes preparations for the next SEU conference, defines time and place;
- renders all types of assistance to organizations, associations, collectives, as well as individual citizens and their families who find themselves in critical situations as a result of their activities in protecting the environment or natural and cultural heritages;
- accepts new members into the SEU or dismisses the members;
The Council has right to co-opt new Council member without exceeding the quota limited by the Conference.
Decisions of the Council are made on a collegial basis and are valid if they receive more than half the vote of the Council members taking part in the meeting, besides the questions of admittance into SEU and co-optation in SEU Council. The Council meetings are legitimate if more than half of the Council members are present.
The decisions of the Council are recommendatory for the SEU members on questions concerning mutual relations between the SEU with other organizations, enterprises, establishments and citizens about nature protection measures.
The Council makes decisions concerning disbursement of SEU funds and elects an "accountant" from its members who is accountable to the Council and the SEU conference.
All members of the Council have equal rights, can speak on behalf of the SEU and are responsible for their actions before members of the Council and the SEU Conference.
6.7. The Center for Coordination and Information.
The Center for Coordination and Information is a working organ established by the SEU Council in accordance with the decision of the Conference. CCI, in the interest of the SEU, its organs, branches and members, gathers essential information and makes it available to interested people and organizations, organizes working groups for resolution of various issues and problems, and carries out other necessary measures necessary for the successful working of the SEU.
The Director of the Center for Coordination is appointed by the Council and is accountable for his/her work before the Council.
6.8. Revision Commission:
The inspecting activities of the Revision Commission are carried out when necessary but not less than once in 3 years.
- is accountable only to the Conference;
- verifies that conference decisions are fulfilled;
- confirms financial expenses of the SEU; and
- reports at the conference about its results and follow up of their proposals.
Members of the Revision Commission can not be members of other elected organs of the SEU or employees of the SEU working organs.
7. Legal status, funding sources and the property of the SEU:
7.1. The SEU is a legal organization from the moment of the registration, and in accordance with Law, has an independent balance, holds accounts in banks, has an official stamp and letterhead with the name which is approved by the SEU Council.
7.2. The SEU, as represented by the Council, and in accordance with law and legal procedure has the following rights:
- to defend the legal rights and interests of the population when environmental laws are violated;
- to demand from administrative or juridical offices changes in decisions regarding the installation, construction and operation of ecologically hazardous objects including limiting, halting, ceasing or altering their activities;
- to stand as plaintiff in legal cases on citizens legal rights and interests defense;
- to stand as plaintiff in legal and arbitration cases to defend culture and nature objects, environment and in regards to compensation for harm to the health and property of individuals caused by violations of ecological laws;
- to organize and conduct public environmental impact assessments and public environmental hearings;
- to carry out any enterprising or economic activities not forbidden by law, and to establish businesses or commercial operations that possess legal status, in order to carry out its responsibilities as indicated in the Charter;
- to hold property necessary for carrying out activities indicated in the Charter, including buildings, structures, enterprises, equipment, plots of land, housing fund, cultural and educational structures, rehabilitation clinics, publishing houses, monetary holdings, bonds and other securities, and all other forms of property;
- to establish facilities for mass information and undertake publishing activities;
- to announce competitions; to organize and hold assemblies, meetings, demonstrations, symposiums, seminars, conferences, exhibits; to organize auctions that fall under the Charter and are in accordance with existing laws;
- to create and take part in the establishment of non-commercial organizations including ecological and charitable funds and public inspections necessary to fulfill the SEU's Charter;
- to conclude agreements following from economic activities of the SEU and also to conclude any civil agreements in accordance with established legal order;
- to carry out any activities that are in accordance with the law.
7.3. The SEU is not liable for the activities of its members, as the members are not liable for the activities of the SEU.
7.4. The SEU emblem is seven cranes with wings spread flying in V-formation towards the planet Earth.
7.5. The SEU financial holdings and property consist of:
- voluntary payments and donations;
- money or property coming from organizations or persons as a gift or heritage;
- revenues from undertakings like lectures, exhibits, auctions carried out according to the present Charter for the benefit of the SEU;
- revenues received from SEU activities, their enterprises, organs, organizations and establishments;
- grants and agreements for targeted program and project funding;
- interest coming from stocks, bonds and deposits;
- other income and donations received in compliance with the presiding law.
7.6 The SEU has rights to carry out business-related activities only if they lead to the SEU goals achievement. The business activities are carried out according to the Russian Civic Code and other Russian legislation.
Finances of the SEU are dispersed for tasks indicated in the Charter and are not redistributed among its members.
8. Order of Reorganization and Dissolution of the International Social Ecological Union:
8.1. Liquidiation or reorganization of the SEU is taken by a decision of the SEU conference and must be agreed to unanimously.
8.2. Liquidation of the SEU can be done by decision of a court order in accordance with existing law. The SEU reorganization and liquidation is conducted according to civic legislation.
8.3. All the property of the SEU, liquidated by decision of the conference, will be designated for goals stipulated by the SEU Charter.
8.4. Documents on the staff of the SEU organs after its liquidation are passed in accordance with the existing order to the state archive.
The changes and amendments to the Charter of the international public organization "International Social Ecological Union" (ISEU) were registered at the Ministry of Justice of the Russian Federation on June 11 ,1999.
Registration Number 1732
11 pages numbered, stapled and stamped.
Deputy Minister E. Sidorenko
June 11, 1999