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Know the West

The ecosexual movement is attracting new people to environmentalism

‘Pollen-amorous’ leaders host marriages to the Earth in Sin City.


In a bright green dress with a plunging neckline, Jennifer Reed stood under a white trellis in a downtown Las Vegas plaza on Earth Day, April 22, officiating a wedding.

The betrothed? Twenty-five self-proclaimed ecosexuals, who were there to declare their undying love for Earth. They recited, solemnly, from a manifesto circulating the plaza in the warm desert air.

“The Earth is our lover. We are madly, passionately and fiercely in love. … We make love with the Earth through our senses. … We are polymorphous and pollen-amorous. … I promise to love, honor and cherish you, Earth, until death brings us closer together forever.”

On Earth Day, members of the ecosexuality movement, a term that encapsulates a person “whose adherence to green living extends to their romantic life,” hosted a Marriage to the Earth ceremony. There, roughly 25 people declared their vows to the Earth as drummers played rhythmically.

The ecosexual movement is growing, and according to ecosexology sociologist Jennifer Reed, it’s broadening what it means to be an environmentalist. “This ecosexual trend is engaging a new population of people that hadn’t been in the environmental movement. There’s an intersection with the queer, gay, lesbian community, feminism community, drag queens, former sex workers,” Reed said. “These are not the people that would go to a board meeting for the Sierra Club.”

Earth Day’s alternative unions were meant to celebrate an energetic connection with nature. “This is a deliberate way to reverse what has long been a destructive and extractive relationship with the natural world,” Reed said. “There is an erotic element of the Earth, and ecosexuality is all about expanding the idea of what sensuality is.”

“Las Vegas is known as a sexualized city, for quickie marriages,” Reed said. “But it’s also in the middle of the desert and so vulnerable. Sustainability and water issues are crucial here. We hope these marriages remind people, especially here in the Sin City, that we need a more balanced relationship with the natural world.

“We’re here to protect the Earth and take care of her. We’re in this together.”

Paige Blankenbuehler is an assistant editor for High Country News. Email her at [email protected] or submit a letter to the editor