Evolution of Procedural Rights and Legal Standing in Environmental Matters in Latvia

In: Baltic Yearbook of International Law Online
Žaneta Mikosa null

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In light of recent discussions on the need to broaden eligibility for legal standing in environmental disputes in order to fulfil the requirements of the Aarhus Convention, and thus to facilitate enforcement of environmental law, this Chapter is aimed at discussing the evolution of the most extended approach to legal standing (often referred as actio popularis or open standing) in Latvia since it regained independence.

The purpose of this Chapter is twofold. Firstly, it aims at contributing to the ongoing discussion on incentives for liberalizing standing to open the doors of national courts in environmental matters triggered by the Aarhus Convention and recent case law of the Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU) in that respect. Secondly, to contribute to the understanding of ‘the why and the how’ of the most extended rules of legal standing developed in Latvia for environmental disputes and whether they have been applied in practice by administrative courts. Generally, the approach to legal standing signals ‘how much enforcement’ society wants. This Chapter is about the Latvian experience indicating how much enforcement of environmental law society has so far been ready to accept considering its international commitments as well.

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