ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

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A Half-baked Attempt at Revamping Environmental Law

The Environment Laws (Amendment) Bill, 2015 is a major policy attempt to make structural changes in environmental governance. But the bill fails in bringing any change to the institutional mechanism for enforcement of the law. Moreover, the bill attempts to introduce a monetary penalty for environmental damages, which is not in consonance with the well-established polluter pays principle.

The central government in India has made serious attempts to make structural changes in environmental governance and address a long-felt need. The Environment Laws (Amendment) Bill, 2015 (henceforth, the bill) is a major policy attempt in this regard.

The bill attempts to introduce a monetary penalty for environmental damages caused. In this regard, it proposes amendments to the Environment (Protection) Act, 1986 (henceforth, the act) and the National Green Tribunal Act, 2010. Introducing a monetary penalty for environmental damages could be considered a measure towards the strengthening of the civil liability legal framework.

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