Odpowiedzialność administracyjna w ochronie środowiska
Administrative Liability in Environmental Protection
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Aside from civil and penal liability, administrative liability constitutes one of three basic types of liability upon which environmental protection is based in Poland. The doctrine of environmental protection has always accepted the institution of administrative liability manifest in the fact that an entity that uses the environment unlawfully bears administrative liability regardless of civil or penal liability. The former was ultimately codified on 27 April 2001 in Law on Environmental Protection (i.e. Dziennik Ustaw [Journal of Laws] of 2008, No. 25, Item 150 as amended) as part of Title VI, section entitled “Administrative liability.” Administrative liability can be the subject of proceedings instituted ex officio only, which is the case for administrative proceedings concerning environmental protection. It is realized by means of relevant legal instruments i.e. decisions obliging a given entity to limit his impact on the environment and restore it to the former state, decisions to halt the activity or operation of installation of a legal entity or physical person using the environment, and decisions withdrawing or restricting previously obtained rights to use the environment. In principle, this is objective liability, therefore independent of the guilt. One can distinguish two basic forms of administrative liability: 1) administrative compensation as well as prevention and redressing harm to the environment, 2) halting activity, including withdrawing or restricting the existing decisions. Legal regulations concerning administrative liability provided by Law on Environmental Protection are not comprehensive, though. More regulations can be found in other acts, especially the law of 9 June 2011 “Geology and mining law” (Journal of Laws No. 163, Item 981 as amended) and the law of 27 April 2001 on waste material (Journal of Laws , No. 185, Item 1243), which does not demonstrate inconsistency of law in this respect but rather points to the unique character of the subject matter.
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