The Environmental Pillar and Northern Ireland Environment Link, who together represent almost 100 environmental organisations from across the island of Ireland, are working together to draw attention to the cross-border environmental implications of Brexit – one of six key areas of cooperation outlined by the North-South Ministerial Council as established under the Good Friday Agreement.
The below document outlines a short briefing note from the two coalitions on the need for a level playing field for environmental standards on the island of Ireland post-Brexit. At a minimum, The forthcoming Political Declaration on the future EU-UK relationship should include:
- A level playing field for environmental standards, based on a set of substantive rules anchored in EU law and covering core requirements in relation to, inter alia, nature protection, water quality, air quality, waste management and environmental assessment;
- Clear commitments binding both parties with respect to mechanisms for the effective oversight and enforcement of environmental standards in their respective jurisdictions, including guarantees on access to environmental justice and a proper complaints mechanism for citizens and civil society organisations; and
- An agreement on dispute settlement which covers all of the environment-related provisions, including legally binding decisions and sanctions in cases of non-compliance.