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The “Environment for Europe” Process

The “Environment for Europe” process started with the first Pan-European Conference of Ministers of the Environment at Dobris Castle in June 1991.

The Minister of the Environment of the former Czechoslovakia, the late Josef Vavroucek, invited the Ministers of the Environment of the United Nations Economic Commission for Europe (UN/ECE) and the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) to the Conference with the purpose of establishing a new “European Environmental Space” after the end of the East-West division of Europe – an idea which, at the time, was closely linked to the concept of a “Common European House”.

This process provided for a framework of regional initiatives that resulted in adopting of a number of important environmental instruments, such as

  • Aarhus Convention on Access to Information, Public Participation in Decision-Making and Access to Justice in Environmental Matters and the Protocol on Pollutant Release and Transfer Registers to it;
  • Protocol on Strategic Environmental Assessment to the Espoo Convention;
  • Carpathian Convention, etc.