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Internal Market: Iceland has improved access to environmental justice




Iceland has made the necessary changes to its national law to allow for access to justice in environmental matters. The EFTA Surveillance Authority (ESA) therefore closes a case against Iceland today. Environment-iceland

ESA opened the case in 2015 after receiving numerous complaints from NGO's and private individuals in Iceland who stated that there was a lack of access to justice in environmental matters. ESA's conclusion was that Iceland had not fully implemented Directive 2011/92/EU on the assessment of the effects of certain public and private projects on the environment. The Directive provides for wide ranging access to justice in environmental matters, amongst them a review procedure to challenge both the substance of decisions and the way those decisions are taken. During ESA's investigation it became clear that Icelandic law did not provide such a review procedure in circumstances where no formal decision had been taken. 

In June 2018, the Icelandic parliament passed a law, which provides for special rights to appeal for acts and omissions. ESA is satisfied that by this, Iceland has taken the necessary steps to comply with the requirements of the directive and closes the case.

For further information, please contact:

Ásta Sigrún Magnúsdóttir
Communications officer
tel. +32 2 286 18 78
mob. +32 490 57 63 59


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