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The Role of Philippine Courts in Establishing the Environmental Rule of Law

September 2012

Citation: 42 ELR 10866

Issue: 9

Author: Elizabeth Barrett Ristroph

In 2010, the Philippine Supreme Court led the Philippines to become the first nation with rules of procedure specific to environmental cases. While the Philippines has made great strides in adopting environmental laws and providing access to courts, more work is needed to ensure consistent decisions and to build capacity in both lower courts and government agencies. As shown in the case of Metropolitan Manila Development Authority v. Concerned Residents of Manila Bay, the Court will need to find a balance between making environmental laws a reality and taking on more than it can (and should) handle.

Elizabeth Barrett Ristroph served as a legal specialist in the Manila office of the American Bar Association Rule of Law Initiative (ABA ROLI) in 2011 and 2012. This Article was
written outside of Ristroph’s work for ABA ROLI and does not necessarily reflect the views of ABA ROLI or its sponsors.

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