Richard Macrory's legal commentary: ECJ rules on access to environmental justice

A ruling by the European Court of Justice implies that it will be legitimate to invoke Aarhus in all areas of EU environmental law. Courts and other public bodies will be under a duty to apply the principles as far as possible

Richard MacroryA European Court of Justice (ECJ) ruling has dramatically extended the legal reach of the Aarhus Convention’s access to justice provisions. It implies that courts and other public bodies now have a duty under EU law to interpret their powers to be as consistent as possible with Aarhus, in any areas covered by EU environmental law.

Lesoochranarske zoskupenie VLK v Ministerstvo zivotneho ­prostredia Slovenskej republiky (Case C-240/09 European Court of Justice 8 March 2011) was a reference from a Slovenian court seeking a definitive ruling on the legal effect of the Aarhus Convention in European law.

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