A Green Way Out? or The Effects of Environmental Protection on the Public Enforcement Mechanism
Title: A Green Way Out? or The Effects of Environmental Protection on the Public Enforcement Mechanism
Author: BORZSÁK, Levente
Citation: Florence, European University Institute, 2008
Series/Report no.: EUI PhD theses; Department of Law
This thesis argues that the present provisions on public enforcement are inadequate for the effective promotion of compliance with Community law and seeks to provide solutions in order to improve them. Article 226 and 228 EC are both cumbersome and lengthy, particularly with regard to environmental protection. In order to reach this conclusion, the thesis reviews the subject of the enforcement procedure, the infringement itself. It gives a definition of compliance and offers reasons why and how Member States comply or fail to comply with Community rules. It analyses the Commission's role in applying the public enforcement mechanism, before it reviews the problems occurring in the application of Article 228, as the “ultima ratio ultimae rationis” in infringement procedures. Although the Commission attempted several times to clarify the application of that Article, there are still open questions. Environment is the field of law which produces the most enforcement problems and if we find solutions to them, we may be able to use the experiences in other sectors, too. After introducing the main approaches promoting compliance, it is argued that more attention needs to be paid to enforcement than to the managerial approach. Reviewing the managerial instruments reveals that they are more powerful when complemented by enforcement means. Consequently, the thesis focuses upon the latter methods, by referring to the case law on Article 228, which demonstrates the success of the public enforcement procedure. The enforcement mechanism, however, is not perfect, thus a variety of solutions is proposed to make it more effective. Along the lines of the amendments introduced in the Treaty of Lisbon, some improvements to these articles are proposed together with a so-called urgency measure, which empowers the Commission to stop – at an early stage – an infringement that might otherwise mean irreparable damage to the environment.
LC Subject Heading: Treaty Establishing the European Economic Community (1957); Environmental law -- European Union countries; Environmental law -- European Union countries -- Cases; Environmental law, International
Defence date: 11 July 2008; Examining board: Gráinne de Búrca (EUI Supervisor) ; Bruno de Witte (EUI) ; Jane Holder, University College London ; Sybille Grohs, European commission, DG ENV
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