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Tenth meeting of the Task Force on Access to Justice under the Aarhus Convention

27 - 28 February 2017

Salle XI, Palais des Nations Geneva, Switzerland

The tenth meeting of the Task Force on Access to Justice took place from 27 February 2017 to 28 February 2017 (morning) in Geneva (Palais des Nations, Salle XI).

The meeting provided a platform for exchanging information on key recent developments concerning legislation, policy and case law with regard to the implementation of the third pillar of the Convention and possible measure to remove barriers hampering its implementation.

The thematic session of the meeting focused on enabling effective access to justice for all without persecution and harassment. Mr. Michel Forst, UN Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights defenders, addressed the meeting with the keynote statement on the situation of environmental human rights defenders.

In addition, the participants discussed recent developments related to (a) standing, (b) the scope of review, (c) adequate and effective remedies, (d) costs and (e) any other emerging issues or issues of a systemic nature that might impede the implementation of the third pillar of the Convention.

Furthermore, the participants  examined tools to promote effective access to justice, including specialization of judges, courts and tribunals, mediation and other alternative dispute resolution methods, e-justice initiatives, evaluation of effectiveness and capacity-building initiatives.

Read more about the meeting here.

Documents, presentations and statements

Documents, presentations and statements are available in the section below.

The background material for the meeting included relevant information derived from 2017 and 2014 national implementation reports and the 2014 synthesis report as well as the Convention’s Implementation Guide, the analytical studies and the jurisprudence database developed under auspices of the Task Force.

 

 

Documents

DocumentsENGFRERUS
Provisional agenda (AC/TF.AJ-10/Inf.1)PDF
List of speakersPDF
List of outcomes (AC/TF.AJ-10/Inf.5)PDF
Report
List of participantsPDF
Item 2. Thematic focus: Enabling effective access to justice without persecution and harassment
Overview of the implementation of article 3, paragraph 8, of the Aarhus Convention (AC/TF.AJ-10/Inf.2)PDF
Selected considerations, findings and reports of the Aarhus Convention Compliance Committee relating to the implementation of article 3, paragraph 8, of the Aarhus ConventionPDF
2016 Report of the UN Special Rapporteur on the situation of the environmental human rights defenders (A/71/281 in English, French and Russian)
Netherlands: Whistleblowers Authority's Reporting ProcedurePDF
Item 3. Taking stock of recent developments
REC Study on the scope of review in the selected countries of South-Eastern Europe (Bosnia and Herzegovina, Montenegro and the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia) - DRAFT courtesy of REC CEEWORD
UNECE Study on the scope of review in the selected countries of South-Eastern and Eastern Europe, the Caucasus and Central Asia - DRAFTWORDWORD
Normative Resolution of the Supreme Court of Kazakhstan on the Application of Environmental Law in Civil CasesPDF
Statement by France on new developments in class actions in environmental matters in France PDF
Statement by Environment Links UK on access to justice in UKPDF
Item 4. Tools to promote effective access to justice
Overview of the availability of the quantitative data relevant to the practical application of the provisions of article 9 of the Convention (AC/TF.AJ-10/Inf.4)PDF
Environmental Courts & Tribunals: a Guide for Policy-makers (courtesy of UNEP)

Presentations and statements

Presentations and statementsENGFRERUS
Item 2: Thematic focus: Enabling effective access to justice without persecution and harassment
Mr. Michel Forst, UN Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights defendersPDF
Mr. Roberto Rando, European Investment Bank
How to protect complainants against retaliation? The approach of the Independent Accountability Mechanisms of International Financial Institutions
PDF
Mr. Joost Pikkemaat, the Netherlands
An Independent Provision for Whistle-blowers in the Netherlands: ‘the House for the Whistle-blowers’
PDF
Ms. Gordana Petkovic, Serbia
Legal aspect of combating corruption in the field of environmental protection - Republic of Serbia
PDF
Mr. David Banisar, Article 19
Environmental Defenders: Human rights, Whistleblower Protections – Laws and Best Practices
PDF
Item 3: Taking stock of recent developments
Mr. Beibut Shermukhametov, Supreme Court of Kazakhstan
Recent Normative Ruling on Issues of the Application of Environmental Law in Civil Cases by Courts
PDF
PDF
PDF
Mr. Miroslav Gavalec, Supreme Court of Slovakia
Access to Justice in Environmental Matters: New Development
PDF
Mr. Patrick Dietz, European Commission
Access to Justice in Environmental Matters: New developments in the case law of the European Court of Justice
PDF
Mr. Thomas Schomerus, Leuphana University, Germany
German Act on Access to Courts in Environmental Matters (Umweltrechtsbehelfsgesetz), Aarhus Decision V/9H & EU Court of Justice, C-137/14: Follow-up 2017
PDF
Ms. Anais Berthier, ClientEarth
Access to justice in UK
PDF
(a) class actions and effective remedies
Mr. Joost Pikkemaat, the Netherlands
Access to Justice for NGOs in Environmental Matters: current affairs and prospective legislation
PDF
Mr. Philippe Ramet, France
New developments regarding class actions in environmental matters in France
PDF
(b) scope of review
Ms. Tsvetelina Filipova, REC CEE
Findings of the REC study on access to justice in environmental matters particularly in respect to the scope of review in the selected countries (Bosnia and Herzegovina, Montenegro and the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia)
PDF
Mr. Siarhei Mahonau, EcoHome, Belarus
New opportunities in PPDM outcomes judicial review in Belarus
PDF
(c) other key developments - emerging issues
Ms. Inesa Zargaryan, Armenia
New developments on standing of eNGOs in Armenia
PDF
Mr. Victor Kamenkov, Belarusian Republican Union of Lawyers
The potential for mediation in the implementation of the Aarhus Convention
PDF
Item 4: Tools to promote effective access to justice
(a) On evaluation
Mr. Vojtech Vomacka, Masaryk University, Czechia
Access to Justice in the Czech Republic: Statistics and Data Analysis
PDF
(b) On e-justice initiatives
Ms. Chloe Gambin, Malta
E-justice initiatives in Malta in relation to the Aarhus Convention
PDF
(c) On capacity-building
Ms. Dilara Arstanbaeva, Supreme Court of Kyrgyzstan
Application of the Aarhus Convention – Framework for Access to Justice by Members of the Public
PDF
PDF
PDF
Mr. Plamen Peev, Bluelink Foundation, Bulgaria
Access to Justice in Bulgaria - practical lessons from the legal watch over energy and extracting industry
PDF