Law and Politics in Environmental Protection: A Case Study on Korea

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Cho, Hong Sik
Issue Date
BK 21 law
Journal of Korean Law, Vol.2 No.1, pp. 45-80
While law played an instrumental role in Korea's economic development, it has not been as effective in the field of environmental protection. Although Korea has successfully modernized its formal

environmental law system, its practical application has fallen well short of public expectations as compared to progress in the economic realm. Judicial oversight has been gradually increasing, yet the courts have exercised restraint in test cases brought by nongovernmental environmental and citizens'

organizations. In this paper, the author attempts to explain why this divergence between legislative initiatives and administrative practices took place. Drawing on recent literature which sees the structure

of government as dictated by politics, the author explores why the bureaucracy neither behaves as expected by the public nor performs as mandated by legislation, and why the courts just look on with folded arms. After pointing out the inherent limits of current efforts, the author concludes that

establishing the "rule of law" concept more firmly in judicial, administrative, and legislative practice is crucial to furthering the quality of life as affected by the environment.
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College of Law/Law School (법과대학/대학원)The Law Research Institute (법학연구소) Journal of Korean Law (JKL)Journal of Korean Law Volume 02 Number 1/2 (2002)
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