What is precautionary principle under environmental law?
The precautionary principle requires that, if there is a strong suspicion that a certain activity may have environmentally harmful consequences, it is better to control that activity now rather than to wait for incontrovertible scientific evidence.
Why is the precautionary principle important?
The precautionary principle enables decision-makers to adopt precautionary measures when scientific evidence about an environmental or human health hazard is uncertain and the stakes are high.
What is the origin of the precautionary principle?
The precautionary principle originates from the German principle of foresight or Vorsorge. Germany further developed this principle in the 1970s as a foundation for its environmental law and policies on global warming and acid rain.
How many precautionary principle are there?
There are three essential parts: If there is reason to believe that harm may result from an action or a technology and if there is scientific uncertainty about the harm, measures to anticipate and prevent harm are necessary and justified. Harm to humans, other creatures, or the environment all count, but not equally.
Who uses the precautionary principle?
It also is used in environmental decision-making in Canada and in several European countries, especially in Denmark, Sweden, and Germany. The Precautionary Principle has been used in the environmental decision-making process and in regulating drugs and other consumer products in the United States.
When was the precautionary principle introduced?
The precautionary principle was formally adopted in the Maastricht Treaty in 1992, and is one of the main principles on which EU environmental policy is based.
What is the precautionary principle philosophy?
The basic idea underlying a precautionary principle (PP) is often summarized as “better safe than sorry.” Even if it is uncertain whether an activity will lead to harm, for example, to the environment or to human health, measures should be taken to prevent harm.
When should the precautionary principle be used?
The Precautionary Principle. The precautionary principle states that if a product, an action, or a policy has a suspected risk of causing harm to the public or to the environment, protective action should be supported before there is complete scientific proof of a risk.
Where has the precautionary principle been applied?
Who developed the precautionary principle?
Many commentators argue that the precautionary principle originally emerged from Germany in the mid-1970s. A few argue that its development started at the 1972 Stockholm Conference on the Human Environment.
What are two criticisms of the precautionary principle?
Understandings of the precautionary principle will continue to develop as conceptions of uncertainty evolve. A common criticism of the precautionary principle is that it is ill-defined. Concerns relate to ambiguous terms such as ‘irreversible harm’ or ‘lack of full scientific certainty’.
What are the strengths of precautionary principle?
Nevertheless, a clear advantage of the precautionary principle is that it requires decision-makers to explain the rationale behind their decisions, to quantify the risks, and to provide objective information.
What is wrong with the precautionary principle?
The biggest problem with the precautionary principle is that it does not clearly enhance the protection of public health and the environment.
Where does the term’precautionary principle’come from?
The concept “precautionary principle” is generally considered to have arisen in English from a translation of the German term Vorsorgeprinzip in the 1980s.
What is the legal status of the precautionary principle?
This means that it is compulsory, so a court can quash or confirm a decision through the application of the precautionary principle. In this sense, the precautionary principle is not a simple idea or a desideratum but a source of law. This is the legal status of the precautionary principle in the European Union.
What is the precautionary approach?
A precautionary approach is a particular “lens” used to identify risk that every prudent person possesses (Recuerda, 2008) On 2 February 2000, the European Commission issued a Communication on the precautionary principle, in which it adopted a procedure for the application of this concept, but without giving a detailed definition of it.
Who was involved in the precautionary principle?
Members of the Bay Area Working Group on the Precautionary Principle contributed to drafting the Ordinance. The most important Australian court case so far, due to its exceptionally detailed consideration of the precautionary principle, is Telstra Corporation Limited v Hornsby Shire Council.