A Brief Introduction of Environment Law
In the Constitution of India it is clearly stated that it is the duty of the state to `protect and improve the
environment and to safeguard the forests and wildlife of the country'. It imposes a duty on every citizen
`to protect and improve the natural environment including forests, lakes, rivers, and wildlife'.
Reference to the environment has also been made in the Directive Principles of State Policy as well as
the Fundamental Rights.
The constitutional provisions are backed by a number of laws - acts, rules, and notifications. The EPA
(Environment Protection Act), 1986 came into force soon after the Bhopal Gas Tragedy and is
considered an umbrella legislation as it fills many gaps in the existing laws. Thereafter a large number
of laws came into existence as the problems began arising, for example, Handling and Management of
Hazardous Waste Rules in 1989.
1986 - The Environment (Protection) Act authorizes the central government to protect and improve
environmental quality, control and reduce pollution from all sources, and prohibit or restrict the setting
and /or operation of any industrial facility on environmental grounds.
1986 - The Environment (Protection) Rules lay down procedures for setting standards of emission or
discharge of environmental pollutants.
1989 - The objective of Hazardous Waste (Management and Handling) Rules is to control the
generation, collection, treatment, import, storage, and handling of hazardous waste.
1989 - The Manufacture, Storage, and Import of Hazardous Rules define the terms used in this context,
and sets up an authority to inspect, once a year, the industrial activity connected with hazardous
chemicals and isolated storage facilities.
1989 - The Manufacture, Use, Import, Export, and Storage of hazardous Micro-organisms/ Genetically
Engineered Organisms or Cells Rules were introduced with a view to protect the enviro