Democratic Reform in Ukraine

Olena Krvavchenko, EPL Executive Director

ELAW partners at Environment-People-Law (EPL) have worked for years to advance democratic reform in post-Soviet Ukraine. This work grew more urgent following the 2014 Revolution of Dignity, where tens of thousands of protesters gathered at the Maidan in Kyiv calling for reform. More than 80 people were killed and more than 1,000 injured.

Earlier this month, EPL celebrated an enormous victory for democracy and the rule of law:

The Ukraine Parliament adopted two new laws that eliminate the outdated Soviet system of state environmental expertise and bring European standards of Environmental Impact Assessment into national legislation.

“The old system was severely flawed, leaving industry unregulated and the environment contaminated,” says Olena Krvavchenko, EPL Executive Director.

“There was limited opportunity for public participation and we were out of compliance with international conventions and important European Union directives.”

EPL reached out to ELAW for model Environmental Impact Assessment laws from around the world and included key provisions in proposals to Parliament.

ELAW sent information showing that a good Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) process allows citizens to obtain information and participate in decisions about projects that might harm the environment.

“There is hard work ahead to ensure practical implementation of the new laws, but we are optimistic,” says Olena.

Congratulations to everyone at EPL!

Maggie Keenan
Communications Director
Environmental Law Alliance Worldwide

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