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The Government today submitted its response to the European Commission's Green Paper on Remedying Environmental Da...
The Government today submitted its response to the European Commission's Green Paper on Remedying Environmental Damage. The Green Paper considers the usefulness of civil liability- both fault and strict liability - as a means of allocating responsibility for the costs of environmental redress.

It also addresses the possibility of remedying environmental damage, in cases where it is not practicable to apply civil liability regimes, through the use of joint compensation systems.

Commenting on the Government's response, Environment and Countryside Minister, Tim Yeo said: 'I welcome the opportunity to debate the issues raised by the Green Paper and look forward to the exchange of views and information between the Commission and Member States on these issues. However, we think that we should keep national control over the legal framework for civil liability for remedying environmental damage.

'We are not complacent and recognise that there is scope for learning from others and improving our own arrangements - we are, after all, currently reviewing provisions for dealing with contaminated land. However, based on our own arrangements, we think that action by Member States alone can generally be sufficient to achieve the Community's environmental objectives in this area.

'Likewise, we are not convinced that variations in costs, resulting from different systems of civil liability or from different national priorities with regard to remedying environmental damage, can be considered as distortions of competition in the Single Market.'
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