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Environmental Rights in the EC Legal Order


Pavlos Eleftheriadis


University of Oxford - Faculty of Law

September 2007

Oxford Legal Studies Research Paper No. 24/2007

Abstract:     
This article attempts to offer a general framework for the protection of environmental rights in the European Union's legal order. The article discusses the Aarhus Convention, which follows the international trend for procedural protection of environmental rights. The European Commission proposes to give effect to its 'access to justice' dimension of the Aarhus Convention in a way that endorses uniformtity as a goal. I argue that this goal is mistaken. The guiding constitutional principle in this area should be that unless there are strong reasons to the contrary, EC law will only supplement the public law of the Member States by providing minimum standards. Under the scheme of environmental rights established by the Aarhus Convention each applicant or environmental activist may have slightly different rights depending on the country where he or she starts their actions or launches their campaigns. The public law of the EC, of which environmental law is now a major part, is not an attempt at harmonization nor is it a simple deduction from the principles of direct effect and supremacy.

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Date posted: September 22, 2007  

Suggested Citation

Eleftheriadis, Pavlos, Environmental Rights in the EC Legal Order (September 2007). Oxford Legal Studies Research Paper No. 24/2007. Available at SSRN: http://ssrn.com/abstract=1015923 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.1015923

Contact Information

Pavlos Eleftheriadis (Contact Author)
University of Oxford - Faculty of Law ( email )
St. Cross Building
St. Cross Road
Oxford, OX1 3UJ
United Kingdom
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