Centre for International Environmental Studies
23 June 2020

EU Biodiversity Law and its Health Impact

Our research assistant, Dario Piselli, is a PhD candidate in International Law at the Graduate Institute of Geneva. He has co-written a chapter with Riccardo Pavoni in the book Environmental Health in International and EU Law: Current Challenges and Legal Responses by Stefania Negri. 

This chapter deals with the health impacts of current European legislation in the field of biodiversity, and the possibility for a more effective integration of human health and well-being within its provisions. It addresses the progressive incorporation of  health considerations in the Habitats and Birds directives and in the Invasive Alien Species regulation, the use of health-related arguments in the biodiversity jurisprudence of the Court of Justice of the European Union, and the linkage between environment and health in the application of the precautionary principle.

Overall, the chapter argues that the Habitats and Birds Directives’ critical role for health essentially remains a side-effect of their conservation aims. In particular, as the Directives continue to suffer from poor implementation and compliance at the national level, the chapter suggests that a more effective integration of human health and well-being within their provisions could significantly strengthen these instruments’ contribution to the achievement of the EU Biodiversity Strategy.

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