Green laws hit, WWF warns

Greece?s commitments under the bailout agreement and the misguided notion that environmental legislation is a stumbling block to economic development have taken a serious toll on green legislation, WWF Greece said Wednesday.

According to the WWF?s eighth annual review on the implementation of environmental law in Greece, the worst-affected legal domains were environmental impact assessment (EIA) and licensing, forest legislation, and construction.

Laws passed in the past 12 months — some included in the midterm austerity program — entail the legalization of thousands of illegally built properties, the undoing of the so-called Green Fund, and the potential exclusion of waste treatment plants from the environmental licensing process.

?The legislation and policies currently implemented exacerbate the ecological deficit, worsening longer-term environmental remediation costs,? said Theodota Nantsou, WWF Greece?s policy coordinator.