Access to Justice in Environmental Matters – The EU’s Difficult Road Towards Non-Compliance With the Aarhus Convention
Marjan Peeters and Mariolina Eliantonio (eds) Research Handbook on European Environmental Law (Edward Elgar 20xx), Forthcoming
19 Pages Posted: 3 Oct 2019 Last revised: 16 Oct 2019
Date Written: August 28, 2019
There is not only a long and commonly held (academic) opinion, but also an international obligation that requires the European Union to have easy access to justice for environmental nongovernmental organisations (ENGOs). However, even under heavy international pressure, the standing requirements that limit the access to the Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU) for these applicants remain in place. This chapter aims to introduce the general system of access to justice under Article 263 and Article 267 TFEU. It will be explained how the Court has a particular view on how judicial review should function. It is however likely that this system has a number of deficiencies. These deficiencies are clearly brought to light in the complaint that was raised before the Aarhus Convention’s compliance mechanism. An analysis of this procedure and its problematic outcome will be used to discuss the future for these public interest litigants.
Keywords: access to justice, aarhus convention, CJEU, 267 TFEU, judicial review, European Union, environmental law
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