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Species Protection in the Environmental Assessment—Assembling the Puzzle

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The EU provisions on species protection and the environmental assessment together with the corresponding jurisprudence provide us with a wide array of pieces that may appear confusing, in particular if the Conventions of Bern and Rio are taken into account. But like a puzzle these pieces can be assembled into a coherent system that could significantly strengthen the effectiveness of both areas of EU environmental law. This system comprises on two stages: in the first stage the concerns of species protection must be integrated into the environmental assessment and in the second stage the information obtained provides the foundation for the subsequent decisions on plans, programmes and projects. A consequent application of this approach should help to improve respect of species conservation rules in the context of many activities and add “teeth” to the assessment obligations.

Affiliations: 1: Chambers of Advocate General Kokott Court of Justice of the European Union, Luxembourg,


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