Practical Manual for Understanding and using Environmental Law

Albania’s measures to prevent the deterioration of the environment and to respond to environmental change have been increasingly driven by commitments under multilateral environmental agreements on the one hand, but also by domestic needs on the other. This requires government officials not only to understand how to implement existing international commitments but also how to contribute to the negotiation of new international commitments.

A precondition to that is a good understanding of the development, features, functioning, and implementation of multilateral environmental agreements. On the other hand, civil society actors, and environmentalists often face the inability to understand the legal complexity of international environmental law and how to use it in their daily work.

The purpose of this handbook is to provide an overview of international environmental law, focusing on some important multilateral environmental agreements known to the general public.

To help CSOs understand the basics of international engagement, this handbook is divided into several sections. In the first part, is given a general information on international environmental law and its historical development. While in the second part is given an explanation of environmental conventions about the entry into force, their functioning, and implementation. In this section is also given a practical guidance to CSOs so they can understand the mechanism of compliance and the conventions’ implementation in practice.

Based on this information, the third part provides an overview of environmental law in Albania focusing briefly on horizontal environmental legislation. The fourth part is built around the practical implementation of national and international environmental legislation focusing on the case of the Vjosa River and the legal battle followed by EcoAlbania.

The target audience for this handbook is basically the CSOs that work in the field of environment, but it can also be practically used by other stakeholders that seek to understand commitments under multilateral environmental agreements.

The manual is produced in Albanian and English.

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