Back to Square One: Revisiting How We Analyse the Right of Access to Environmental Information

Sean Whittaker (Lead / Corresponding author), Jonathan Mendel, Colin Reid

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)
111 Downloads (Pure)


The right of access to environmental information has become a key aspect of contemporary efforts to promote environmental governance in the United Kingdom (UK). The right is enshrined in international law through the Aarhus Convention which, alongside other legal developments, has influenced how academics analyse the right in the UK. How research into the right has been conducted is significant because it has led to gaps in how we understand the right and undermines environmental protection efforts.

This article identifies and critiques the common analytical trends used to analyse the right of access to environmental information in the UK. The article considers two of these trends, examining their negative impact and the role of the Aarhus Convention in creating these trends. The article concludes by discussing the need to critically engage with these knowledge gaps to improve how the right is guaranteed and, ultimately, the implementation of environmental protection efforts.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)465-485
Number of pages21
JournalJournal of Environmental Law
Issue number3
Early online date21 May 2019
Publication statusPublished - 1 Nov 2019


  • Access to environmental information
  • Aarhus Convention
  • environmental governance
  • United Kingdom
  • Aarhus convention
  • Environmental governance

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Law
  • Management, Monitoring, Policy and Law


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