The Legal Significance of Article 11 TFEU for EU Institutions and Member States
Sjåfjell, Beate, The Legal Significance of Article 11 TFEU for EU Institutions and Member States (November 24, 2014). The Greening of European Business under EU Law: Taking Article 11 TFEU Seriously, Beate Sjåfjell and Anja Wiesbrock (eds), Routledge 2015, pp. 51-72;
University of Oslo Faculty of Law Research Paper No. 2014-38; Nordic & European Company Law Working Paper No. 14-08
25 Pages Posted: 26 Nov 2014 Last revised: 5 Oct 2018
Date Written: November 24, 2014
Article 11 of the Treaty of the Functioning of the European Union (TFEU) sets out an all-encompassing legal duty to integrate environmental protection requirements in the policies and activities of the European Union (EU). What does this entail for the EU institutions and for the Member States?
This book chapter first introduces sustainable development as an EU law objective, principle and rule. The argument is presented that particularly the codification of the sustainable development principle in Article 11 TFEU has significant legal implications for the institutions of the European Union, entailing direct obligations on all levels: Law-making, administration, supervision and judicial control.
The implications for the Member States are rather more indirect, but nevertheless highly relevant, influencing the interpretation, implementation and application of EU law; the justification of Member State initiatives that restrict free movement; entailing a possible duty to act to promote overarching objectives under certain circumstances, and perhaps also indicating a coming general principle of sustainable development on Member State level. The chapter thereby shows how EU Treaty law, taken seriously, may be used as a tool to ensure that EU law itself and the national laws of its Member States truly work towards a global, sustainable development.
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