[general] rules of consideration
[general] rules of consideration
official Swedish sources in English:
The Swedish Environmental Code - Swedish Environmental ...
www.swedishepa.se › Guidance › Laws-and-regulations › The-Swedish-En...
Oct 10, 2018 -
The Swedish Environmental Code
The Environmental Code constitutes a modernised, broadened and more stringent environmental legislation aimed at promoting sustainable development. It came into force on 1 January 1999. It replaced fifteen previous environmental acts which were amalgamated into the Code.
General rules of consideration
Chapter 2 of the Environmental Code contains a number of general rules of consideration that express, for instance, the precautionary principle, the polluter pays principle, the product choice principle and principles regarding resource management, recycling and suitable localisation of activities and measures.
The rules have a preventive effect since they make binding demands on anyone running a business or an operation or taking action to learn about the environmental effects of such activities and express the principle that the risks of environmental impact should be borne by the polluter and not by the environment.
Supervisory and licensing authorities have the power to base their decisions on these general rules of consideration concerning injunctions, bans, permit conditions etc. As a result, the content of these rules becomes much more specific through regulations or decisions in each individual case.
Pages 17 and 18:
Rapport 6790 - Swedish Environmental Law - An ... - Naturvårdsverket
https://www.naturvardsverket.se › Documents › publikationer6400
GENERAL RULES OF CONSIDERATION, CHAPTER 2
The so-called ‘general rules of consideration’ constitute fundamental principles for the application of the Code. These principles apply to all activities
that have an impact on the environment, regardless of the extent or scale
of the activity. Consequently, these principle must, for example, be applied
when setting conditions for permits or in matters regarding environmental
One of the most fundamental principles is the Burden of proof principle,
which states that it is the party who pursues an activity that must prove that
the obligations arising out of the Code are complied with. According to the
Proportionality principle, the general rules of consideration apply as long as
they are not unreasonable; application of the general rules of consideration
should be environmentally justifiable and financially reasonable in each case.
Arguably, the general rules of consideration all relate back to the Precautionary principle, which sets out the fundamental requirement for anyone
who pursues an activity to take all necessary environmental precautions in
order to limit the impact on human health and the environment. The mere
risk of damage and detriment triggers this obligation. Such precautions may,
for example, involve limiting the scale of operations or applying the best possible technique, the Best Possible Techniques Principle (interpreted together
with the Proportionality principle, this corresponds to the requirement of
applying Best Available Techniques, BAT).
Other general rules of consideration that relate to the precautionary principle are: 1) the Knowledge requirement, according to which everyone who
pursues an activity must acquire the knowledge necessary to protect human
health and the environment against damage or detriment, 2) the Appropriate
location principle, according to which the site for an activity must be suitable
with respect to the purpose of the activity being achieved with a minimum of
damage, detriment or nuisance to human health and the environment, and 3)
the Product choice principle, which requires operators to refrain from the use
or sale of chemical products that could involve hazards to human health or
the environment if other less dangerous products can be used instead.
Further to the principles described above, the Polluter pays principle
requires anyone who takes a measure that could have an impact on human
health or the environment to be responsible for complying with the provisions concerning remediation set out in the Code and to pay any resulting expenses. Finally, the Resource management and eco-cycle principle stipulates
that an activity must be carried out in such a way so as to ensure the efficient
use of raw materials and energy and to minimize waste generation. The use
of renewable energy sources should be preferred and the extraction of natural
resources should be economized. Waste should be recycled, reused or recovered insofar as is possible, and disposal should be carried out without damaging the environment. The ultimate objective of this principle is to maintain
closed material cycles.
Even if the general rules of consideration are applied, some activities can
still cause substantial damage to human health or the environment. To avoid
such consequences, the general rules of consideration are supplemented by a
so-called “stopping” rule. According to this rule, which applies to all activities under the Code, an activity or measure which is likely to cause considerable damage, detriment or nuisance to human health or the environment may
only be undertaken if the Government deems that special circumstances so
warrant. Furthermore, an activity or measure must not be undertaken if it
is liable to lead to a considerable deterioration in the living conditions of a
large number of people or a considerable deterioration in the environment.
Only if it is of utmost importance for the public interest and provided the
activity or measure is unlikely to be detrimental to public health may such
an activity or measure be allowed by the Government.
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