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Public participation in decisions on specific activities in environmental matters in Croatia

Lana Ofak

elni Review 2012, Issue 1,  pp. 13-19. https://doi.org/10.46850/elni.2012.003

Croatia finished accession negotiations with the EU in June 2011. The Accession Treaty was signed on 9 December 2011. The EU accession referendum in Croatia was held in January 2012 with a positive outcome. 66.27% of Croatian citizens voted in favour of Croatian accession to the European Union and 33.13% of votes were against the accession. Following ratification of the Accession Treaty by the 27 EU member states, accession of Croatia to the EU is expected to take place on 1 July 2013.
In the 2011 Progress Report, European Commission stated that there has been progress in the area of environment. Overall, Croatia’s environment-orientated preparations are nearing completion in terms of both alignment and implementation of the relevant legislation. However, implementation of the horizontal acquis, and in particular effective public participation and access to justice in environmental matters, need to be improved.
The purpose of this article is twofold. Firstly, it provides a general overview of the legal framework for public participation in decisions on specific activities in Croatia, which is intended to implement provisions of Art. 6 of the Convention on Access to Information, Public Participation in Decision-making and Access to Justice in Environmental Matters (hereinafter: the Aarhus Convention or Convention). Implementation of Art. 7 and 8 of the Aarhus Convention are not discussed. Secondly, specific problems in exercising the right to participate in environmental impact assessment procedures in Croatia are analysed. It is shown that there are cases of non-compliance with the provisions of Art. 6 of the Aarhus Convention.

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References 

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