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London meeting: Access to environmental justice – Aarhus Convention update

Monday 6 November 2017 Herbert Smith Freehills, Exchange House, Primrose St, London EC2A 2HS
5.15pm (registration from 4.45pm) - 6.45pm
1.5 CPD points
Organised by London meeting team

Please join us for this early evening session on access to justice and Aarhus.

This seminar will explore the many recent developments relating to access to environmental justice and the UK’s implementation of the Aarhus Convention, including the effect of Brexit on rights enshrined in EU law, the new costs rules in the CPR for environmental public law claims, the European Court of Human Right’s judgment in Austin v. UK on prohibitive costs and the ECHR, and jurisprudence from the Court of Appeal and the Aarhus Convention Compliance Committee regarding costs in environmental litigation between private parties. The discussion will also look at the Compliance Committee’s recent case-load in relation to Aarhus compliance issues more generally, including the recent communication against the European Union arising out of the High Speed Two case.


We are delighted to welcome an expert speaker line up.

1. Introduction by Chair (5-10 min)

Lord Carnwath (Justice of the Supreme Court) and UKELA President

2. The Aarhus Convention in the domestic courts, now and post-Brexit (25 min)

James Maurici QC, Landmark Chambers

James Maurici QC was called to the Bar of England & Wales in 1996. He was appointed Queen’s Counsel in 2013. He practices in planning; environmental law; and public law. He has a particular expertise in Aarhus related matters. He acted for the UK in the leading CJEU cases on Aarhus costs namely Case C 530/11 Commission v. United Kingdom [2014] Q.B. 988 and Case C-260/11 Edwards v. Environment Agency [2013] 1 W.L.R. 2914. The principles derived from the latter are now incorporated in the Civil Procedure Rules. He has also appeared a number of times before the UNECE Aarhus Compliance Committee in Geneva: cases include: ACCC/C/2010/45; ACCC/C/2010/53 (Edinburgh Tram) ACCC/C/2011/60; ACCC/C/2011/61(Crossrail) ACCC/C/2012/77 (Nuclear NPS) and ACCC/C/2014/100 (High Speed 2). His domestic cases also include a number of cases on Aarhus costs issues including R. (on the application of Royal Society for the Protection of Birds) v Secretary of State for Justice [2017] EWHC 2309 (Admin); R. (Edwards) v. Environment Agency [2014] 1 W.L.R. 55; R (HS2 Action Alliance Ltd) v. SST [2015] P.T.S.R. 1025 and R (McMorn) v. Natural England [2016] Env. L.R. 14. He was a contributor to The Aarhus Convention – A Guide for UK Lawyers (Hart Publishing, 2015).

3. Costs in environmental litigation: the new rules, the RSPB judicial review and the latest from the Aarhus Convention Compliance Committee and the European Court of Human Rights (25 min)

Charles Banner, Landmark Chambers

Charles Banner was called to the Bar of England & Wales in 2004 and to the Bar of Northern Ireland in 2010. He practices in both jurisdictions and internationally. He has a broad practice falling principally within the following sectors: (1) Urban development, infrastructure and energy; and (2) Government and regulation. Environmental law, international law and EU law feature heavily in his work. He has acted in many of the main cases relating to the Aarhus Convention in the UK, including R (Edwards) v. Environment Agency [2011] 1 W.L.R. 79 (on costs in environmental public law challenges), R (HS2 Action Alliance Ltd) v SST [2015] P.T.S.R. 1025 (on Article 7 of the Convention and public participation in plan-making), R (London Borough of Hillingdon) v. SST [2015] P.T.S.R. 2015 (on whether a public authority claimant is entitled to an Aarhus costs cap), (App. 39714/15 Austin v. United Kingdom in the European Court of Human Rights (on costs in private law environmental litigation), and 7 communications before the Aarhus Convention Compliance Committee (including for the UK Government on several occasions, for the HS2 Action Alliance in its high profile communications against the UK and the EU, and for a mining company in opposition to a communication alleging that its acts triggered state responsibility under the Convention). He is the Editor of The Aarhus Convention – A Guide for UK Lawyers (Hart Publishing, 2015) and a Member of UKELA Council.

4. Recent work of the Aarhus Convention Compliance Committee (25 min)

Elena Fasoli & Alistair McGlone, Aarhus Convention Compliance Committee members

Dr. Elena Fasoli is Assistant Professor in International law at the University of Trento (Italy) and was a member of the UNECE Aarhus Convention Compliance Committee from 2014 to 2017. In 2009 she passed the Italian Bar exam and in the same year she obtained her Ph.D. in international law at the University of Milan. She was later appointed Senior Researcher at the University of Bologna where she taught public international law from 2010 to 2013. From 2013 to 2016 she has been Research and Teaching Fellow at Queen Mary University of London where she taught European Environmental Law (EEL) and Climate Change Law and Policy. In 2016 she has also been Teaching Fellow in EEL at the University of Edinburgh. Dr. Fasoli has been external consultant to the Ministry of the Environment of Italy from 2009 to 2013 and has on several occasions been a member of the Italian delegation to intergovernmental and expert meetings under the Aarhus Convention and the UNECE Water Convention on the Protection and Use of Transboundary Watercourses and International Lakes. Her main areas of expertise are international litigation, State responsibility, international and European environmental law.

Alistair McGlone is an international environmental law consultant and a director of Alistair McGlone and Associates Limited. He is a specialist on compliance and international environmental governance. He has worked for a number of organisations including United Nations Environment; the EU; the International Maritime Organisation; the Westminster Foundation for Democracy; and the secretariats of a number of Multilateral Environmental Agreements (including the Basel Convention on transboundary movements of hazardous wastes, the Montreal Protocol on ozone depleting substances and the framework Convention on Climate Change). Until last month he was a member of the Aarhus compliance committee and the chair of the PRTR Protocol compliance committee. Career highlights include leading the UK delegation that negotiated the Aarhus Convention, chairing the Aarhus Convention Working Group that prepared the compliance committee decision, and leading EU lawyers in the first Kyoto Protocol Meeting of the Parties. He is a veteran of the 1992 Earth Summit, where he was a lead negotiator on the Rio Declaration, including principle 10.

5. Questions and discussion (10 m)


  • £30 UKELA members
  • £45 Non-members
  • £15 discount (eg unwaged/low waged)
  • Students members – limited free places
All places must be booked and your booking is not confirmed until payment has been received.

How to Pay

  • Cheque made payable to UKELA and sent to Emma Sones/Bernadette Atkinson at the address above (DX 28 London).
  • BACS direct into the UKELA bank account 23192562, sort code 160015 – please add your name and let HSF know you have paid this way
How to Book

Email Emma Sones and Bernadette Atkinson at Herbert Smith Freehills: emma.sones@hsf.com; bernadette.atkinson@hsf.com


Herbert Smith Freehills, Exchange House, Primrose St, London EC2A 2HS

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