Policies
January 17
2 mins

The Aarhus Convention

The Aarhus Convention was created to empower the role of citizens and civil society organizations in environmental matters and is founded on the principles of participative democracy. Signatories include 47 European countries.

The United Nations Economic Commission for Europe (UNECE) Convention on Access to Information, Public Participation in Decision-Making and Access to Justice in Environmental Matters was adopted on 25 June 1998. It entered into force on 30 October 2001.

The Aarhus Convention was created to empower the role of citizens and civil society organizations in environmental matters and is founded on the principles of participative democracy. It establishes several rights for individuals and civil society organizations about the environment. The Parties to the Convention are required to make the necessary provisions so that public authorities, at the national, regional, or local level, will contribute to these rights to become effective.

Specifically, the Aarhus Convention provides for:

  1. Access to environmental information
  2. Public participation in environmental decision-making
  3. Access to justice

European countries that have ratified the convention include Albania (2001), Armenia (2001), Austria (2005), Azerbaijan (2000), Belarus (2000), Belgium (2003), Bosnia and Herzegovina (2008), Bulgaria (2003), Croatia (2007), Cyprus (2003), Czech Republic (2004), Denmark (2000), Estonia (2001), Finland (2004), France (2002), Georgia (2000), Germany (2007), Greece (2006), Guinea-Bissau (2023), Hungary (2001), Iceland (2011), Ireland (2012), Italy (2001), Kazakhstan (2001), Kyrgyzstan (2001), Lativa (2002), Lithuannia (2002), Luxembourg (2005), Malta (2002), Montenegro (2009), Nethrland (2004), North Macedonia (1999), Norway (2003), Poland (2002), Portugal (2003), Republic of Moldova (1999), Romania (2000), Serbia (2009), Slovakia (2005), Slovenia (2004), Spain (2004), Sweden (2005), Switzerland (2014), Tajikistan (2001), Turkmenistan (1999), Ukraine (1999), United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland (2005).

More information here.

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