Academic journal article Journal of Legal, Ethical and Regulatory Issues

Legal Regulation of Public Access to Information in the Field of Environmental Protection and Use of Natural Resources

Academic journal article Journal of Legal, Ethical and Regulatory Issues

Legal Regulation of Public Access to Information in the Field of Environmental Protection and Use of Natural Resources

Article excerpt


According to the evolution of development, human rights are divided into: The rights of the first, the rights of the second and the rights of the third generation, depending on the historical era of society. However, in modern legal literature, there are ideas about the possibility of assigning the rights of mankind to a separate group of rights, in particular environmental rights (Kwon, 2016). In this context, the position of Eck deserves attention, which emphasizes that it is necessary to distinguish between the notions of "citizens' rights in the field of environmental relations" and "environmental rights of citizens". She believes that the second concept is much narrower than the first. The citizens' rights in the field of environmental relations cover all their powers, which are related to the natural environment, natural resources in one way or another (Eck, 2016). In general, environmental rights are a qualitatively new group of human and citizen rights that differ from the rights of nature management, primarily, by the focus on the satisfaction of ecological, environmental, but not material, spiritual, aesthetic needs and interests.

In the science of environmental law, the human right to environmental information was reflected in the writings of scientists of a predominantly ecological nature (Todd & Brighton, 2016). Historically, the idea of environmental rights was first reflected in international legal instruments. International Covenants on Human Rights contain proceedings, which can be conditionally transformed into environmental rights of citizens.

Human is an integral part of nature, therefore his activity should be carried out in close harmony with the requirements of the laws of nature and obey them (Stan, 2017). Only on this basis can the degradation of the natural environment be avoided and not disrupt the functioning of mechanisms reproducing natural life foundations (de Castro, 2016). More than half a century ago, Vernadsky wrote: "Man first realistically comprehended that he is a resident of the planet and can should think and act in a new aspect, not only in the aspect of the individual, the family or the kind, states or their unions, but also in the planetary aspect".

The purpose of the article is to study: The concept of "environmental information", its features and species, as well as the features of environmental and legal relations in the sphere of determining the right to environmental information; the essence of the concepts "the right to environmental information", its content, sources, subjects of the realization of this right and the mechanism for its implementation, enshrined in the current legislation; determine the features of access to environmental information as public information about the state of the environment, the delineation of environmental information from commercial information.


Some components of public environmental regulation have a long history (Lee, 2017). In particular, Karel van der Sveep points out that the Swedish legal system in the 18th century already contained norms that can be attributed to public participation. There are similar examples in the history of previous periods: In the middle Ages or even earlier from the thousandth year of our era (Pedersen & Bang, 2016). The people who lived in the "lowlands" (Holland, Denmark, Germany) were in constant state of war with the sea (Devictor & Bensaude-Vincent, 2016). Therefore, they had to deal with land reclamation, increasing the number of arable land, building dams and controlling the water level according to actual demand (Yeh, 2016). The erection of dams requires management and regulation, and the oldest rules known to us are referred to by 1100 AD. These were the so-called Rustringer Rules of Law, which directly attracted the local population to the solution of these issues. This kind of direct involvement of the public still exists in the Netherlands (Ge, 2017). …

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