Environmental Law in the Russian Federation

Concept and Types of Areas with a Special Environmental Legal Regime

Author(s): Aleksey Anisimov and Anatoliy Ryzhenkov

Pp: 196-221 (26)

DOI: 10.2174/9789815049169122010009

* (Excluding Mailing and Handling)


The Russian Federation now stipulates the possibility of establishing two special environmental legal regimes in the country, including specially protected natural areas (SPNAs) and ecological disaster zones. The essence of both environmental legal regimes consists of establishing a special procedure for the use and protection of a clearly localized territory different from the regime of using land plots and other natural objects of the country. This manifests itself in establishing features of the management of this territory, the regime of restrictions of civil and corporate rights, as well as additional funding of a range of special nature protection activities. The purpose of the establishment of special restrictions and prohibitions for economic and other use of these territories is to create additional guarantees of the achievement of the main objective of environmental legislation – to ensure a favorable environmental quality. This means that the establishment of the special environmental legal regime is necessary if the general environmental requirements (licensing, standardization, etc.) do not make it possible to preserve and restore specific natural objects and systems in the appropriate state. The list of the relevant prohibitions and restrictions is contained in federal and regional environmental legislation as well as in land, water, forest legislation, legislation on natural and cultural heritage, etc. Particular additional measures in the area under consideration can also be adopted at the municipal level with the corresponding legal acts of local government bodies. The legal status of both varieties of areas with a special environmental legal regime (SPNAs and ecological disaster zones) has several similar and different features. The purposes of giving a particular territory a special environmental legal regime are also the same – to ensure everyone's right to a favorable environment. Significant differences between these territories consist in the objective related to them. SPNAs are created to conserve certain ecological systems for present and future generations and to study the unique natural areas; ecological disaster zones are created to restore disturbed ecosystems. In this regard, the access of citizens to SPNAs is not prohibited (it is even encouraged), while they have to obtain a special permit to enter an ecological disaster zone. Consequently, the special regime is established to ensure the protection of two territories that are opposite to their ecological state.

Keywords: Arboretum, Baikal, Botanical garden, Cultural heritage, Ecological disaster zones, Fines, Lessee, Natural landscape, Natural monument, National park, Natural system, Nature park, Owner, Privatization, Prohibitions, Recreational activities, Reserve, Restrictions, Specially protected natural areas, Wildlife sanctuary.

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