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Title: Law and practice on public access to environmental information and participation in environmental decision-making : a comparative analysis of Nigerian legal regime with international best practice
Author: Etemire, Uzuazo
ISNI:       0000 0004 5361 3679
Awarding Body: University of Strathclyde
Current Institution: University of Strathclyde
Date of Award: 2014
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Public participation in environmental matters is widely acknowledged as having the potential to improve environmental governance and public wellbeing significantly. Hence, the concept of public participation, in terms of public access to environmental information and decision-making processes, has been a recurring theme in international environmental law for decades, with several instruments calling on states to guarantee the concept in their laws and practices effectively. However, even though Nigeria has ratified and committed itself to many of such international regimes, the country is still widely known for its extensive and increasing environmental pollution, and their consequential harm to public wellbeing. This situation raises serious questions about the value and adequacy of Nigeria's laws and practices on public access to environmental information and decision-making processes, in terms of whether they meet international legal standards to which Nigeria aspires or is committed, as well as reasonably allow for effective public participation. In this light, this thesis assesses primarily the value and adequacy of Nigeria's laws on public participation in environmental matters (mainly, the recent 2011 Freedom of Information Act and the 1992 Environmental Impact Assessment Act) and their implementation. This assessment is largely done against the backdrop of what is considered international best practice on the subject-matter as generally reflected in UNECE's Aarhus Convention. Although Nigeria is not a party to the Aarhus Convention, it is argued that the Convention, broadly reflective of Nigeria's international environmental law commitments, is legally and politically relevant to her. This comparative analysis will reveal areas where Nigerian laws and practices align with, probably go beyond, as well as fall short of best practice. This will also enable recommendations for law-reform to be made (in consideration of relevant socio-economic and political factors in Nigeria) in order to better ensure the practical realisation of the ideals of environmental public participation and that Nigeria is in compliance with its international commitments.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available