EEC environmental Directives and the direct effect doctrine

The so-called direct effect doctrine of EEC law has been little used to date in environmental litigation in the UK. By providing a means for private citizens to raise directly the term of EEC environmental Directives before national courts and other tribunals, the doctrine has potentially major implications in providing an additional mechanism for the effective implementation of EEC legislation, and is likely to be one of the key issues in environmental law over the next decade. Our legal correspondent Richard Macrory (Barrister and Reader in Environmental Law, Centre for Environmental Technology, Imperial College), who has just completed several months on secondment to the Legal Unit in the European Commission's Environment Directorate, examines the evolution and implications of the direct effect doctrine.

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