Justice for the Environment

The speeding up and worsening of the ecological crisis, the increase in number of environmental disputes over damage done to the environment and over the inequitable distribution of common resources, call for a more adequate and effective model of environmental governance at the international level.

Global critical problems such as climate change, biodiversity, water shortage, need an adequate legal answer at all levels. It does not seem realistic, even in legal terms, to go on accepting only thehorizontal national dimension for the protection of the environment.

The pressure of society for real access to environmental justice on a global scale, together with the evolution of international environmental and human rights law, call for the better definition of the obligations of the States and other parties and for more suitable instruments at the international level such asan International Court of the Environment for their enforcement.

The ICEF Project: a brief overview

  • Draft Statute of the International Environmental Agency and the International Court of the Environment (presented at the UNCED Conference in Rio de Janeiro, June 1992).
  • Campaign for an International Environmental Agency and an International Court of the Environment In 1998, ICEF contacted governments and parliaments of the world, demanding they express their views on the creation of these two institutions. All the answers received (87) are published in the Reports of 1998 and 2000 (see the governments’ answers)
  • A public simulation of judgment rendered by the International Court of the Environment in case of environmental damage
  • Environmental Associations versus Alfa and the Italian State, on matter of air and noise pollution of Brenner (judgment rendered in Bolzano, Italy, on July 6, 2001, see the sentence in Italian and in German).

Relevant Documents and publications

  • Justice and Global environment
  • La Cour mondiale de l’environnement. Réflexions et perspectives
  • A more efficient international law on the environment and setting up an International Court for the Environment within the United Nations


  • 2017, La Governance globale dell’ambiente, SIOI, Rome, 15 May 2017
  • 2010, Global environmental governance. The need for an International Environmental Agency and an International Court of the Environment, Rome, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, 20-21 May 2010.
  • 2007, The Protection and Sustainable Development of the Mediterranean-Black Sea Ecosystem, Venice, 24 -26 May 2007.
  • 2005, Prevention and Remedying of Environmental Damage, Ostia Antica, 27- 28 May 2005.
  • 2003, The role of the Judiciary in the implementation and enforcement of environmental law, Rome, The Italian Superior Council of Judiciary, 9-10 May 2003.