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Oil exploration - environmental laws triumph

aljezuroilThe Supreme Administrative Court considers that there is a special legal relevance to the question of the repercussions of the invoked precautionary principle in the execution of environmental damage, although it does not accept the review of the judgment of the Central Administrative Court of the South because there is no longer any situation of "danger", writes environmental association, PALP, in a press release issued on Saturday, June 29.

In March, the Public Prosecutor's Office appealed to the Supreme Administrative Court (STA) regarding the ruling handed down by the Central Administrative Court of the South (TCAS) on 21/02/2019.

This ruling had revoked the ruling of the Loulé Administrative Court and, consequently, dismissed the injunction requested by PALP to suspend the title of private use of the national maritime space (TUPEM) and to order the concessionaires not to proceed with any work, preparatory to the prospection or execution thereof.

The STA considered that the discussion of this judgment would no longer have practical effects, due to the expiry of the legal title - TUPEM, where it was based on the possibility of private use of the national maritime space, to conduct the prospecting, making its intervention unnecessary.

However, the STA considers that "there is a special legal relevance to the question of the repercussions of the invoked precautionary principle in the realization of environmental damage", which reinforces the contentions of PALP that has always focused on the issue of the environmental impacts of a prospecting and exploration, something that the Ministries of the Sea and the Environment and utilities have always tried to deny.

With this decision, environmental movements and organizations feel strengthened. They have the confirmation that there are laws and institutions in Portugal that allow us to defend the environment.

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Comments  

0 #8 Laurinda 2019-07-04 20:40
Quoting Peter Booker:

This particular episode reminds me of the definition of legal aid as a fizzy drink for lawyers.


Agree with you totally. This was a case of more noise and be "seen to be doing" than real action or result.

Unfortunately it was just a waste of tax payers money with no chance of a win ...
+1 #7 Peter Booker 2019-07-02 08:06
I find all of this legalese (or should it be legalpese?) difficult to follow. But it seems to mean that because the validity of the TUPEM (the licence to drill) expired in January this year, there is no case to answer.

And yet the STA, without giving any legal basis for its opinion, suggests that it was a good idea to bring the case in the first place in order to protect the environment. Clearly, they hope that the issue will be raised again.

This particular episode reminds me of the definition of legal aid as a fizzy drink for lawyers.
0 #6 Laurinda 2019-06-29 17:57
cont 3 ... Even if there is a particular legal relevance to the question of what repercussions of the principle of precaution invoked in bringing about environmental damage, the fact remains that the discussion of that question no longer has any practical effect in this case, given the expiry of the legal title , where the possibility of the exclusive use of the national maritime space was based.

Therefore, in view of the expiry of the legal title whose suspension of effectiveness is sought by this provision, it becomes unnecessary for this case, the intervention of this STA, since it is clear from the outset the lack of "“periculum in mora”.
0 #5 Laurinda 2019-06-29 17:56
... The decision of the request a review in the case of the suspension of TUPEM for oil prospecting on the Algarve coast.

In this appeal, the MP protests against the decision on the precautionary principle and its consequences in our legal system.

However, in the present case, there is a relevant circumstance invoked by the defendant and counter-interested parties, namely the expiry of TUPEM. In fact, it is clear from the same legal title, together with the application initiating proceedings, and more precisely from point 4 thereof, that "this license is valid until 10 January 2019". This aspect - which the interested parties invoke to exclude the applicant's interest in bringing proceedings - is relevant at this preliminary stage of assessment.
0 #4 Laurinda 2019-06-29 17:56
Sorry folks. It was not a victory at all. According to a Prof of Law at Lisbon Faculty of Law ..

Here's her opinion on this specific judgement ...

The negative decision of the magazine in the case of the suspension of TUPEM for oil prospecting on the Algarve coast
Judgment (of the STA of 7 June 2019, case 0243 / 17.8BELLE)

cont ...
+2 #3 Tiger Tim 2019-06-29 16:26
Why don't you put your energy into shale mining in England, as this is already happening NOW !

Because that's not what is being discussed...?

Just saying...
0 #2 Denby 2019-06-29 14:22
Quoting Denzil:
Precautionary principle has been a mainstay of environmental legislation since the advanced EU first created their laws 3 decades ago then embedded them in the EU's. Why is it so significant to the Portuguese press that their Supreme Court is now invoking it, presumably because its the first time? It is understandably a core argument in climate change protesting - not waiting for the world to be irrecoverably damaged but acting now to minimise the effects.
What we must look forward to now is Lisbon legislating for something similar to the "Controlling mind" principle. That as originally intended in northern Europe targets the person giving the orders at the top. In southern Europe it needs be inverted to tackle the 'Omerta' silence so that lower level functionaries can more freely claim state protection against their own wrong doing when demonstrably acting for a superior. This would begin to tackle the endemic corruption that the 2018 GRECO report credits Portugal with.


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Why don't you put your energy into shale mining in England, as this is already happening NOW !
+2 #1 Denzil 2019-06-29 10:45
Precautionary principle has been a mainstay of environmental legislation since the advanced EU first created their laws 3 decades ago then embedded them in the EU's. Why is it so significant to the Portuguese press that their Supreme Court is now invoking it, presumably because its the first time? It is understandably a core argument in climate change protesting - not waiting for the world to be irrecoverably damaged but acting now to minimise the effects.
What we must look forward to now is Lisbon legislating for something similar to the "Controlling mind" principle. That as originally intended in northern Europe targets the person giving the orders at the top. In southern Europe it needs be inverted to tackle the 'Omerta' silence so that lower level functionaries can more freely claim state protection against their own wrong doing when demonstrably acting for a superior. This would begin to tackle the endemic corruption that the 2018 GRECO report credits Portugal with.

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