Session 6.1

Environmental implementation and the judiciary

Member States are primarily responsible for implementing EU rules correctly and ensuring that environmental standards required under EU law are complied with. Yet, the Commission may open formal infringement procedures if it considers a systemic breach of EU environmental law is being committed. If the European Court of Justice (EUCJ) confirms a breach of EU law, the Member State in question has to take action, to remedy the breach. However, this takes time and many obstacles have to be overcome to successfully bring a case before the EUCJ.

By giving the floor to EU environmental law practitioners (national and EU judges, lawyers, prosecutors), this session aims at answering the following questions: how to ensure that all relevant facts are duly collected? Is there a need for specialised courts /judges? Does a national judge need to be active and supply grievances not raised by a party to protect the environment? Are references for preliminary rulings sufficiently used?  How to ensure a uniform interpretation and application of EU law?

Recording of the session


Daniel Calleja Crespo, Director-General for Environment, European Commission

Christina Olsen Lundh, LL.M. LL.D Environmental Law, Judge at the Land and Environmental Court, District Court of Vänersborg, and Adjunct Senior Lecturer, Department of Law, University of Gothenburg

Prof. Dr. Luc Lavrysen, President of the EU Forum Judges for the Environment & Judge in the Belgian Constitutional Court

Anne Brosnan, President of Environmental Prosecutors Network (ENPE) & Deputy Director (Chief Prosecutor) Legal Services, Environment Agency, UK

Matthias Keller, Presiding Judge at the Administrative Law Court, Aachen

Participants from the mock trials, organised in the framework of EU Green Week


Aurel Ciobanu Dordea, Director for Implementation & Support to Member States, Directorate-General for Environment, European Commission