Environmental Law Bare Acts

In the Constitution of India it is clearly stated that it is the duty of the state to ‘protect and improve the environment and to safeguard the forests and wildlife of the country’. It imposes a duty on every citizen ‘to protect and improve the natural environment including forests, lakes, rivers, and wildlife’. Reference to the environment has also been made in the Directive Principles of State Policy as well as the Fundamental Rights. The Department of Environment was established in India in 1980 to ensure a healthy environment for the country. This later became the Ministry of Environment and Forests in 1985.

The constitutional provisions are backed by a number of laws – acts, rules, and notifications. The EPA (Environment Protection Act), 1986 came into force soon after the Bhopal Gas Tragedy and is considered an umbrella legislation as it fills many gaps in the existing laws. Thereafter a large number of laws came into existence as the problems began arising, for example, Handling and Management of Hazardous Waste Rules in 1989.

Environment (Protection) Act, 1986

Air (Prevention and Control of Pollution) Act, 1981

Water (Prevention and Control of Pollution) Act, 1974

National Environmental Tribunal Act, 1995

National Environmental Appellate Authority Act, 1997

Indian Forest Act, 1927

Forest (Conservation) Act, 1980

Wild Life Protection Act, 1972

Public Liability Insurance Act, 1991

National Green Tribunal Act, 2010

Scheduled Tribes and Other Traditional Forest Dwellers (Recognition of Forest Rights) Act, 2006