MSc in Energy Law, Business, Regulation and Policy > International & European Environmental Law & Policy

International & European Environmental Law & Policy

Teaching hours and credit allocation: 16 hours, 3 credits
Course assessment: exams


This course aims to offer an intense, practical and detailed-based study of environmental law in depth, within its policy context. It explores and compares law at EU and global levels while at the same time showcasing the advantages, similarities, differences and shortcomings of the each respective legal regime. The overall purpose of the course is to appreciate the significance of European Union law as a system of regional international law seeking to harmonize the national laws of the Member States according to common principles of environmental regulation. The course equips students with a broad expertise which will be of outmost value in careers in government departments and agencies, international organisations, non-governmental organisations, private practice, policymaking by offering  them a complete and updated set of related legal documentation (legal texts and proposals, Commission communications and Green papers, Court cases, written contributions of speakers etc.)

Learning outcomes

On completing the course students will be able to:

  • have a substantive knowledge and understanding of a series of important policy and social issues in energy, and of the contending viewpoints and claims on these issues
  • identify and characterize key approaches from social science disciplines and from interdisciplinary fields like science and technology studies to understanding and evaluating energy issues, and identify advantages, problems and implications of these approaches
  • critically evaluate contributions to the academic and public debates on energy issues, and decisions on them
  • identify, deploy and evaluate a selection of techniques and procedures used in energy policy analysis, decision-making and assessment
  • apply these understandings and skills, and deploy some of these approaches, concepts and techniques, in analyzing a new problem in energy policy, and in devising, evaluating and justifying options for intervention
  • develope their skills in finding and using arguments and information; in critically evaluating such material
  • practice strategy and accountability. Students manage meetings, plan teamwork, and help clients choose policy options that strengthen or protect environmental law
  • learn research and analysis. Students learn to work with statutes and treaties, analyze executive and legislative authority, compare domestic with international law, and integrate legal with scientific or economic analysis; and
  • Cultivate communication skills. Students hone their visual and narrative presentation skills


  • general aspects of international and European environmental law
  • problems related to climate change, nature conservation, water management etc.
  • the interplay between the various levels of law
  • objectives, Principles, Actors, Instruments and Decision–making procedures in International environmental law and policy
  • issues linked to international trade : WTO and environment protection
  • the evolution of European Union environmental competence
  • fundamental environmental objectives of the European Union
  • the basis for substantive environmental legislation
  • environmental liability
  • the implementation and enforcement of environmental legislation
  • alternative strategies in environmental regulation