Main principles of ecology politics and law of the EU

Main principles of ecology politics and law of the EU


Tetiana Sukhorebraa,Ihor Metelskyib, Yurii Piliukovc, Olha Zyhriid, Iryna Yurkevyche


Main principles of ecology politics and law of the EU*



DOI: 10.26350/18277942_000135


Summary:1. Introduction. 2. Material and Methods. 3. Results. 3.1. General principles of EU environmental policy. 3.2 The influence of international conventions on the implementation of state environmental policy in Ukraine. 3.3. Peculiarities of national approaches of EU countries to the development of environmental policy. 4. Discussion. 5. Conclusions


  1. Introduction


Modern social relations, which are shaped by the environmentalization of the global economy, are undergoing significant changes, which in turn affects the approaches and tools that can be used to regulate them. Currently, it is important to approve and ensure the concepts of sustainable development in developed countries. This is due to the urgent need to reform approaches to rational environmental management and the implementation of a green economy[1]. That is why the priority task today for the developed countries of the world, in particular the EU member states and Ukraine, is to implement an effective environmental policy, including through international cooperation. A promising vision of reforming the principles and approaches to the development of public environmental relations is laid down in the provisions of existing legal acts, both at the national and international levels. To develop and implement a high-quality strategy aimed at the protection and rational consumption of natural and energy resources, it is necessary to address the current conditions of the state’s development, which are more dynamic[2].

The research is devoted to identifying the specifics of the vectors of state policy on environmental regulation in the EU. It should be noted that this issue is not new in science. It gained popularity in the last century when the first studies of the state of the environment and its future development were conducted. This topic is still relevant among scientists, as the level of negative impact on the environment is increasing significantly, which provokes the development of global environmental problems.

G.L. Kyriakopoulos[3] analysed it from the perspective of legal regulation. He managed to prove that the effectiveness of environmental policy is expressed in the quality of environmental legislation. He believes that regulatory provisions must necessarily meet the current conditions in which environmental relations are developing. Due to this, the country can prosecute entities that violate such legislation.

J.J. Schoenefeld and A.J. Jordan[4] studied the European experience in the field of environmental relations regulation. They concluded that European authorities form and ensure their system of environmental safety of individual territories. This process should be understood as a set of measures that involve the creation of a circular economy. The latter allows for ensuring the required level of environmental sustainability. This approach makes it possible to identify the general provisions on which the activities of European institutions in environmental protection are based.

K. Piwowar-Sulej[5] studied the core of environmental policy. She established that it is a systemic legal institution that is simultaneously characterized by both intersectoral and interdisciplinary features. The researcher proved that environmental policy is implemented at several levels at once, namely, the state, supranational and global levels. This conclusion allows us to classify approaches to the implementation of state policy in the field of environmental protection under their territoriality.

Y.G. Batyr et al.[6] believe that the implementation of environmental policy is one of the leading places in the institutional mechanism of Ukraine. Its development and implementation are inherent in all branches of government, as well as local governments. This conclusion is important as it allows us to consider this type of policy in the context of maintaining high environmental safety, both at the national and global levels.

W. Bojar and W. Zarski[7] studied Poland’s approaches to the implementation of state environmental policy. Within the country, an effective set of economic means has been established that allows the performing of important functions of the state, including economic ones. The core of this approach is to reform external environmental factors into internal environmental costs, which leads to economic development. Such conclusions are important for this study, as they reveal ways to realize the reverse stimulation of external positive environmental impacts.

The research aims to identify ways and approaches to ensuring environmental policy and legal regulation of environmental protection in the EU. The research objectives include the establishment of the core of the EU’s regional environmental policy; the reveal of the EU environmental law sources; the description and characterization of the principles of EU environmental policy; the analysis of the constituent elements of the EU’s horizontal environmental legislation; the determination of the Environment Action Program significance; the analysis of the current Ukrainian and EU state environmental policy effectiveness level.The novelty and originality of this article lie in the comprehensive analysis of the principles underlying the development and implementation of the EU environmental policy, the assessment of their significance and impact, as well as a detailed study of the structure of the horizontal environmental legislation of the EU, which includes several legal acts regulating a separate sector of relations.


  1. Material and Methods


The analysis method was used in the research. It allowed dividing the category of “public policy” into several parts, one of which is “environmental policy”. Based on this, it was possible to describe how this vector is implemented in the EU countries, as well as in Ukraine. The synthesis method allowed combining the separated components into a single. The analysis identified the structural elements of environmental policy and legislation in individual countries, and the synthesis combined them. It allowed describing the general approaches that are characteristic of the EU’s position on environmental protection and restoration. The synthesis method also revealed the most common approaches for future improvement of the environmental protection system.

The deduction method involved learning specific ways to solve environmental problems through knowledge of the general state of the environment. This allowed us to describe the most critical issues related to natural resources and explore the tools that can be used to address them. In addition, the deduction method was used to analyse the structure of the EU and Ukrainian legislation regulating environmental and social relations. Based on the knowledge of the provisions set out in the highest level legal acts, laws, recommendations, and government programs were studied.

The abstraction method separated an object from its connections with other elements. It was used to study the content of the category of environmental policy, namely its characteristic properties, without considering other principles on which the state policy as a whole is based. The comparison method allowed us to identify common and distinctive features between the approaches of the EU countries and Ukraine to regulating the environmental protection sector. It was used to formulate recommendations necessary for the successful implementation of the European integration process and to bring Ukrainian legislation in line with European standards. In addition, this method was used in the study of regulations in various EU countries, including Malta, Denmark, France, and Slovakia.

Since the research topic is related to the legal plane, the formal legal method was used. It was used to study the structure of national and international legislation governing the field of environmental relations. It provided for the study of such legal acts as A single European act[8], the Maastricht Treaty on the European Union[9], the Directive on environmental impact assessment[10], the Emissions Directive[11], Animal Welfare Directive[12], Treaty of Lisbon[13], Kyoto Protocol[14], The Law of Ukraine On the Basic Principles (Strategy) of the State Environmental Policy of Ukraine for the Period Until 2030[15], The Law of Ukraine On Approval of the Nationwide Program for the Development of the Mineral and Raw Material Base for the Period Until 2030[16], Decree of the President of Ukraine On the Sustainable Development Goals of Ukraine for the period up to 2030[17], National waste management strategy in Ukraine until 2030[18], Constitution of the Slovak Republic[19], The Danish Law On the Protection of the Natural Environment[20], Ecological Charter of France[21].


  1. Results

3.1          General principles of EU environmental policy


One of the most important roles in the EU’s regional policy is the environmental vector. It includes a system of processes that control and protect environmental relations. These include continuous monitoring of the environment, taking necessary measures for its restoration and protection, implementation of legislative activities to address environmental issues and integration of the environmental sector into other structural elements of the EU policy system. The disclosed approaches are general and characterize the main methods of implementing the EU environmental policy.

To analyse the principles and essence of the EU’s horizontal environmental legislation and the effectiveness of the EU members’ actions, it is worth considering its sources. One such legal act regulating the sphere of public relations in the field of environmental protection in the EU is the Single European Act, the competence of which is quite broad[22]. As a result of its proclamation, various areas of activity, including economics, were assigned to the institutional structure of the European Communities. This indicates that it established new provisions concerning the established environmental protection procedure. In addition, it is worth mentioning the Maastricht Treaty on the European Union[23]. This legal act disclosed and described the environmental goals of the EU. They consisted in ensuring the type of activity that would result in the formation of a link between it and the environmental crisis at both the national and international levels. It is worth noting that the Maastricht Treaty was amended by three declarations that also related to the field of environmental relations: The directive on environmental impact assessment[24], the Emissions Directive[25], Animal Welfare Directive[26]. The Lisbon Treaty[27] is also considered the main regulatory legal act in the field of environmental protection, as it describes the general objectives of the environmental approach used in EU countries. Their content is to implement actions aimed at preserving, protecting, and improving the environment. In addition, the purpose of the EU environmental policy under the Lisbon Treaty is to protect public health and to ensure a balanced consumption of natural resources.

Based on the content of the above-mentioned regulatory documents, it is worth describing the EU principles for implementing activities aimed at environmental protection.

1) In particular, the principle of subsidiarity implies that states should carry out joint activities in those areas where countries are unable to fulfil the task themselves. The content of this principle also covers the fact that a collective decision is more effective than one made at the state level.

2) The next is the precautionary principle and the principle of prevention. The latter is aimed at taking preventive actions that can prevent the occurrence of certain actions, including those related to environmental pollution.

3) In addition, the EU environmental policy is based on the principle of causation, which is an effective means of protecting the environment in a free market. Its significance lies in the fact that as a result of the pollution of a natural object, the responsibility and obligation to compensate for the damage caused is imposed on those persons who, by their actions, directly or indirectly, caused it.

4) It is necessary to address the principle of environmental orientation. This approach is based on the rule that there is an interdependence between the needs of the environment and the activities of a person. Provided that such a connection is proven, it is possible to establish the fact that each activity is carried out following the scope of environmental needs. 5) The next principle is the EU environmental policy. It provides for the development, maintenance, and improvement of all other areas of EU activity through the methods of implementing environmental policy.

6) The disclosed principles of the EU environmental policy make it possible to establish the main approaches to the implementation of measures aimed at the protection, rational consumption, and restoration of environmental resources. It should be emphasized that such principles are decisive not only in the above-mentioned area but also in the course of building and developing national and international legislation of the EU countries.

EU horizontal legislative branch is directly related to environmental legislation. In turn, the latter provides for the consolidation of several facts and conditions regarding the specifics of environmental areas. A distinctive feature of such legislation is the wide scope of its use since the rules apply not to a specific area of environmental relations but in general. Horizontal legislation is used to establish methods and means that allow to improve the quality and efficiency of the decision-making algorithm related to environmental protection. The importance of this type of EU legislation lies in the implementation of a strategic analysis of the environmental plans and measures developed; determining the impact of the projects developed on the environment; and providing the public with access to up-to-date environmental data. It is worth noting that horizontal legislation also includes requirements for EU states to report on the state of the environment in a particular region, the European Pollutant Release and Transfer Register, and environmental liability measures.

Structurally, such EU environmental legislation consists of seven directives, three regulations, and one recommendation. These types of legal acts are similar to each other, but at the same time, they have some distinctive features. The latter relates to the entities that are responsible for actions that violate the normal order of existence and the development of environmental relations. The regulations stipulate that the main participants in environmental activities are the EU central authorities. They are established and supported by funds from the EU’s general budget, not the national budget of a particular state. Examples of such bodies are the European Environment Agency and the LIFE+ program[28]. Subject to the successful implementation of these directives into the national legislation of the state, the entities responsible for the implementation of such provisions are the member states. At the same time, the European Commission plays a decisive role in its implementation as a central authority.

Since 1973, the European Commission has been issuing multi-year Environmental Action Programs (EAPs). The content of these documents includes the formulation and description of proposals for amending environmental legislation and modernizing EU environmental policy objectives. So far, eight such programs have been implemented, the last of which entered into force on May 2, 2022[29]. It includes environmental and climate goals for 2030 and a future vision for 2050 in the context of “living well within planetary boundaries.” The main goal of this program is to increase transparency and inform Europeans about the real state of the environment, as well as the effectiveness of the EU’s environmental policy. Particular attention is paid to the “polluter pays” principle, which allows for strengthening the environmental financing system and gradually phasing out environmentally harmful subsidies. To assess the success of the eighth EAP, the Commission will implement two in-depth studies in 2024 and 2029. This will help to describe the progress made and improve the quality of interaction between states in the course of its implementation.


3.2 The influence of international conventions on the implementation of state environmental policy in Ukraine


Analysing Ukraine’s experience in implementing the state environmental policy, it should be noted that international conventions and other legal acts have a significant impact on this process. For example, in 2004, Ukraine ratified the Kyoto Protocol[30], which contains provisions for reducing greenhouse gas emissions. Based on these documents, several regulatory acts of various levels were developed and implemented. For example, The Law of Ukraine on the Basic Principles (Strategy) of the State Environmental Policy of Ukraine for the Period Until 2030[31], The Law of Ukraine On Approval of the Nationwide Program for the Development of the Mineral and Raw Material Base for the Period Until 2030[32], Decree of the President of Ukraine On the Sustainable Development Goals of Ukraine for the period up to 2030[33]. The implementation of the National waste management strategy in Ukraine until 2030[34], which was developed on November 08, 2017, by the Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine, also plays an important role.

Currently, seventeen strategic goals in Ukraine define three areas of state policy implementation, as set in the Decree of the President of Ukraine on the Sustainable Development Goals of Ukraine for the period up to 2030[35].

Given the current conditions, namely the war between Russia and Ukraine, the approaches to fulfilling the state tasks have changed somewhat. The issue of preserving the current economic and human capital has become particularly relevant. In addition, the problem of food security of the state is at the forefront, which also affects the implementation of the state environmental policy.Wars cause serious environmental pollution. This can include chemical contamination from the use of chemical weapons, oil contamination of water and soil from damage to oil wells and transport routes, and radioactive contamination from the use of nuclear weapons. Bombing, deforestation, soil destruction, and other military actions can seriously damage the environment, destroying habitats and ecosystems. The movement of military equipment and people from one region to another can lead to the spread of invasive species that can harm local ecosystems. War and conflict can cause large emissions of carbon into the atmosphere, contributing to global warming. Disruptions to water supplies, sanitation systems and agricultural areas can lead to water and food problems affecting people and wildlife. In conditions of war and social chaos, illegal hunting and fishing can increase dramatically, threatening already endangered species. Firearms, ammunition, and explosions from military operations create significant amounts of smoke and other pollutants that affect air quality.

The main problems in the regulation of environmental relations are the lack of an integrated system that includes means and tools for environmental management. This is reflected in the existence of monopolies on environmental liability, which results in a significant weakening of this mechanism and loss of its importance. The lack of a developed algorithm that would provide for the payment of a fine or other payment by an entity that has violated environmental legislation should be addressed as well. Based on the principles of EU environmental policy described above, Ukraine should develop a clear procedure for payment by guilty entities for environmental pollution, which may be expressed in such acts as exceeding the norms of waste accumulation, increasing air pollution, deterioration of the chemical composition of water resources, and irrational use of energy and water resources.

The issue of implementing legislative changes, namely institutional reform, aimed at changing approaches and instruments of environmental control in Ukraine, is also relevant. In addition, it is important to bring the norms of national regulatory documents in line with EU legislation in terms of establishing penalties for environmental offences. As a result, the volume of environmental investments, including foreign ones, is expected to increase, as well as the mechanism for implementing environmental audits, and the approval and dissemination of technologies to support environmental innovations.


3.3. Peculiarities of national approaches of EU countries to the development of environmental policy


Characterizing the peculiarities of the national approaches of the EU states to the development of environmental policy, it is worth noting the conditional geographical division of this region. The southern region includes Cyprus, Croatia, Bulgaria, Spain, Portugal, Italy, Greece, and Malta. This region is characterized by an agrarian economy and a well-developed tourist infrastructure. As a result, there are problems such as soil erosion, and air and water pollution. For example, Malta’s environmental legislation is characterized by three sources, including international treaties, EU legislation, and national laws[36]. Recently, the Maltese government has begun to implement large-scale changes in the energy sector, resulting in the development of policies based on a balance between the economic and environmental spheres[37]. To a greater extent, they are expressed in the modernization of the energy infrastructure, namely the transition to electricity generation. In addition, Malta’s energy policy is reflected in the provision of grants and tax credits for energy-saving measures. They are based on the use of renewable energy sources. It should be noted that the state policy in this area is aimed not only at rulemaking but also at the environmental education of the population. For example, an online platform has been developed to help farmers use nitrates properly in agriculture.

The EU’s eastern region includes such countries as Poland, Romania, Hungary, and the Czech Republic, as well as Slovenia and Slovakia. It is characterized by industrial pollution of air and water resources caused by coal and chemical enterprises. In Slovakia, the national legislation in the field of environmental policy is represented by the Constitution of the Slovak Republic, the provisions of which enshrine the right of citizens to a clean environment and their obligation to protect and improve the environment[38]. Currently, the State environmental strategy “Green Slovakia – Strategy of the environmental policy of the Slovak Republic until 2030” is in force[39]. It provides for the protection of natural resources, as well as the provision and improvement of the green economy.

The northern region of the EU includes Denmark, Ireland, Finland, Latvia, Estonia, Sweden, and Lithuania. These countries are characterized by harmonious development and rational consumption of natural resources. For example, in Denmark, the main legal act regulating the environment is The Danish Law on the Protection of the Natural Environment[40]. A defining feature of this country is that about 60% of its total area is occupied by agricultural resources[41]. That is why the state monitors rule compliance for the use of fertilizers and plants in agriculture. Denmark’s state environmental policy is characterized by strict sanctions and preventive measures. For example, in 2010, a tax on nitrogen emissions was introduced and an eco-friendly public transportation system was developed[42]. Denmark’s approach is promising, as it envisages obtaining 100% of electricity from renewable energy sources by 2030[43].

Austria, Germany, France, the Netherlands, Belgium, France, and Luxembourg are conventionally classified as central and north-western regions[44]. The example of France can reveal the main problems and ways to solve environmental problems in these territories. It should be noted that in this country, the basic principles of environmental law are disclosed in the Ecological Charter of France[45]. It sets forth a wide range of rights and obligations of citizens regarding the use of natural resources. This country’s approach to French citizens’ access to information and their participation in solving environmental problems is a priority[46]. Any decision made by public authorities that affect the environment must be submitted to the public in the respective region[47].

Thus, approaches to environmental policy in the EU are implemented both through general, international provisions and individual acts of national legislation. This allows for an increase in the effectiveness of the environmental protection process by focusing on the problems of a particular area and ensuring the necessary measures at the global level.


  1. Discussion


Several opinions in the scientific community reveal the scope of state environmental policy from different angles. Some scholars focus on its concept, and some on its structure and subjects. To compare the research results with the ideas of other authors, it is worth revealing their content and core. For example, N.D. Woods[48] carried out a theoretical analysis of this topic, namely, he revealed the concept of “state environmental policy”. He concluded that this category should be interpreted as a system of legally established goals and methods, means, and approaches based on which public authorities ensure the development of the environmental sphere. Specifying this concept, he proved that such actions of certain entities are aimed at preserving, reproducing, and protecting the environment. Successful implementation of such a policy is characterized by several indicators, for example, rational consumption of natural resources and objects; the level of balance in nature management; the dynamics of development of innovative environmental technologies; the quality of conditions under which the country’s environmental safety and society’s life are ensured. This position coincides with the research results. The researcher correctly defined the object of environmental policy, namely the ecological and environmental environment, as a set of natural and social algorithms responsible for the development of natural resources, and the protection of the health and life of citizens. It should be emphasized that the main subject of implementation of such a policy is the state, represented by public authorities together with the people since it is responsible for initiating the development and implementation of the state environmental policy[49].

D. Hausknost’s[50] study is worth noting, as he revealed the tasks of the state environmental policy. The level of their comprehension determines the effectiveness of their construction, and most importantly, their implementation, so this issue is one of the main ones in the implementation of the state environmental policy. Following the researcher, the objectives of such a policy should be inherently global. This indicates that their focus is dual, and therefore the range of relations they influence is expanding. This position is not unanimous and therefore has both similarities and differences with the results obtained in this study. On the one hand, current approaches and tools to improve the sphere of environmental relations should successfully overcome the current negative challenges arising from the active development of the state’s industrial complex. Thus, there is a significant reduction in resource and energy costs. At the same time, to realize such tasks, namely global ones, it is necessary not only to develop a special environmental management system but also to create the appropriate conditions for its quality implementation[51]. This demonstrates the complexity of such an approach, as it excludes the possibility of local control over the amount of man-made environmental impact. Therefore, in this case, based on the peculiarities of the researcher’s position, it should be noted that the consolidation of strategic objectives at the global level is possible only in the form of an international treaty or other legal act. Through their implementation, it is possible to influence the general, global state of the environment, but it is important to combine this process with regional monitoring and environmental protection activities in specific areas.

S. Team[52] analysed specific ways of implementing the state environmental policy. He classified it, namely, methods of environmental protection, economic monitoring, stimulation of environmental activities, incentives, and coercive measures. At the same time, one of the main means of implementing environmental policy is economic. They can be disclosed in the context of credits, loans, mandatory payments, investments, and other fees. This vector is responsible for financing the state policy in the field of environmental protection. Equally important are educational and informational activities. This approach involves developing the public’s awareness and knowledge of the current state of the environment, current state policy goals, and current methods used to improve environmental protection and accelerate its restoration. It is advisable to agree with this opinion and at the same time note the priority of other ways to implement such a policy. That is why it is not advisable to make the measures described above exclusive in the field of environmental protection. This is because the state environmental policy is based on the simultaneous use of a set of instruments, which in turn form a system. On this basis, the exclusion of one of its elements implies the order of implementation and successful fulfilment of environmental tasks.

In turn, A.N. Gunarathne et al.[53] studied environmental policy from the subjective side, namely the activities of business entities and other economic units. They noted that such entities simultaneously develop and implement environmental policy. In addition, they have a significant impact on the implementation of environmental policy at the supranational level, for example, through interaction with multinational companies. The highest priority area for business entities is innovation, as it involves significant minimization of negative environmental impacts. As a result, it is expected to achieve a successful environmental effect, which will also affect the activities of the enterprise or other organizations. This position is consistent with the results of this study since in the current environment, multinational companies and other business entities are obliged to formulate and implement environmental policies.

T.A. Borzel and A. Buzogany[54] analysed the issue of legal regulation of state environmental policy. The researchers proved that the implementation of such regulation as a policy tool on all established stages of the entities’ activities is mandatory for their quality interaction with other elements. This implies the possibility of forming a full-fledged environmental policy system based on a certain legal approach within which its implementation takes place. Thus, legal regulation as an instrument of state environmental policy involves the development and conclusion of agreements, treaties, conventions, and declarations at the international level. As for the national level, it is possible to formulate strategies, concepts, resolutions, laws, and codes within its framework. At the entity level, environmental policy is implemented based on the provisions outlined in the internal document of a particular business entity. Such conclusions fully coincide with the position revealed in this study, as they reveal the system of legal regulation, according to its subjects.

L. Golovko et al.[55] and X. Chen[56] characterized the current state of environmental policy development in Ukraine. They emphasized that this process is a long-term one, and therefore involves the formation and implementation of a certain algorithm. One of its most important stages is legislative activity, which involves the development of new or amendments to existing regulations. In this case, the priority for today is to approve a high-quality step-by-step procedure that provides for the implementation of established state programs in certain regions or the state as a whole. To avoid conflicts or other shortcomings in the legislation, it is appropriate to use the EU requirements for regulating the use, protection, and restoration of the environment. This issue becomes particularly relevant in the course of the European integration process, one of the prerequisites of which is to bring national legislation in line with European legislation, including in the context of environmental protection. This position is fully consistent with the results obtained in the course of this study. This is reflected in the unity of the researchers’ views on the priority of compliance with EU legislation in the regulation of state environmental policy in Ukraine.

The discussion revealed different approaches to a common issue, namely state environmental policy. The differences in the positions of scholars and the discrepancy between their conclusions and the results obtained in this study indicate the multidimensional nature of the issue of environmental protection, in particular its legal regulation.


  1. Conclusions


The research determined that environmental protection is an important vector in the public policy of the EU countries and Ukraine. This is caused by its importance for the future development of the states, as well as the social well-being of the population. The research establishes that environmental policy involves measures aimed at protecting, controlling consumption, and restoring natural resources.

The research reveals the content of international legal acts that are sources of EU environmental law. This allowed us to describe the approaches based on which environmental policy is implemented. These include the principle of subsidiarity, precaution, warning, culpability, and environmental focus. environmental policy of the EU. The research reveals their significance and peculiarities of implementation. Moreover, the structure of the EU’s horizontal legislation was described. It includes seven directives, three regulations, and one recommendation. The provisions of these acts provide for the formation of tasks aimed at solving environmental problems, as well as ways to implement them. Special attention was devoted to Ukraine’s environmental policy and its reform during European integration. The research describes the structure of Ukrainian national legislation regulating environmental relations. Priority approaches for the implementation of EU regulations into the current provisions of Ukrainian laws and codes are considered.

The research divided the EU territory into several regions, namely, southern, eastern, northern, and central and western. The particularities of each of them, which cause environmental problems, are described. Approaches to the organization of environmental policy and protection of this sphere are revealed in the example of one state from each region. It was possible to consider the promising ideas of the representatives of these countries, based on which the environmental situation should be improved in the future. Further research should consider ways to use digital technologies in the process of restoring natural resources and the environment.


Abstract: The relevance of environmental protection is caused by its importance for the current and future life of people on the planet. The research aims to examine the basic principles underlying the development and implementation of the European Union’s (EU) environmental policy. As a result, the sources of EU environmental law were identified, namely, international documents whose provisions relate to the use, protection, and restoration of the environment. The principles underlying the development and implementation of the EU environmental policy were described, and their content and significance were assessed. In addition, the research examines the structure of the EU’s horizontal environmental legislation, which includes several legal acts regulating a particular sector of relations. An assessment of the EU’s current activities in the field of environmental protection was made, accompanied by an analysis of the Eighth Environment Action Program. Thus, the main approaches to the control and regulation of environmental relations in the EU were established to realize the rational and comprehensive environmental development of the states.


Keywords: environment - anthropogenic activity - state control – legislation - natural resources

aDepartment of Law, Vinnytsia Institute of Trade and Economics of State University of Trade and Economics, Ukraine (

bDepartment of Law Enforcement, Criminal Law and Procedure, West Ukrainian National University, Ukraine

c Department of Law Enforcement, Criminal Law and Procedure, West Ukrainian National University, Ukraine

d Department of Civil Law and Procedure, West Ukrainian National University, Ukraine

e Department of Law Enforcement, Criminal Law and Procedure, West Ukrainian National University, Ukraine

* Il contributo è stato sottoposto a double blind peer review.

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