Book Cover: Environmental Principles.  From Political Slogans to Legal Rules

This book traces the evolution of environmental principles from their origins as vague political slogans reflecting fears about environmental hazards to their embodiment in enforceable laws. Environmental law has always responded to risks posed by industrial society but the new generation of risks have required a new set of environmental principles, emerging from a combination of public fears, science, ethics, and established legal practice. This book shows how three of the most important principles of modern environmental law grew out of this new age of ecological risk: the polluter pays principle, the preventive principle, and the precautionary principle. Since the first edition was published, the principles of polluter-pays, prevention, and precaution have been encapsulated in a swathe of legislation at domestic and international level. Courts have been invoking environmental law principles in a broad range of cases, on issues including GMOs, conservation, investment, waste, and climate change. As a result, more States are paying heed to these principles as catalysts for improving their environmental laws and regulations.
This edition will integrate to a greater extent the relationship between environmental principles and human rights. The book analyses new developments including the EU Charter of Fundamental Rights, the case law of the European Court of Human Rights, which has continuously carved out environmental duties from a number of rights enshrined in the European Convention of Human Rights, and the implementation of the UNECE Convention on Access to Information

Reviews:A. Jóhannsdóttir on wrote:

"One of a kind, de Sadeleer's book, not only contributes to high quality environmental law scholarship, it enhances the quality of legal research in the still growing field of environmental law, and is capable of providing environmental law researchers, legal professionals, the judiciary, law students and other interested in environmental law, with a solid understanding of the three environmental principles: the polluter-pays, the prevention, and the precaution principles, and how they have developed from political slogans to legal rules, and continue to evolve against the environmental challenges of the present times."

G. Roller wrote:

All in all, the book of Nicolas de Sadeleer is a very useful and exhaustive source of information for any environmental lawyer. The environmental principles are interpreted in such a way to make them an important basis to reinforce environmental law. The book makes the reader think in different ways and is an invitation to leave traditional legal pathways."

Stefano Nespor on wrote:

"De Sadeleer's book is not only a must-have reference for anyone wishing to deal with the subject matter, but also has the merit of giving food for thought on a multitude of topics. The author carves out a system of principles covering the whole discipline of environmental law, which was hitherto missing. After reviewing the various principles in the literature and in the case law, De Sadeleer delves in particular into three of them the polluter-pays, prevention, and precaution, which, in his view, overcome the fragmentation of environmental law."