This content is exclusively provided by FAO / FAOLEX

Act No. LIII of 1995 on the General Rules of Environmental Protection.

Type of law
Date of original text

In accordance with the constitutional right to a healthy environment, the Law promotes the reduced use, burdening and contamination of the environment, the protection of human health, the improvement of quality of life, the conservation of natural resources and their sustainable management and renewal. It also aims at harmonizing State activities with the requirements of environmental protection, at the international cooperation in the field of environmental protection, public participation, integrating social and economic development into environmental protection, the establishment and development of institutions for environmental protection and the creation of a specialized public administration. Special regulations regarding specified matters are also listed in article 3. The fundamental principles of environmental protection are precaution, prevention and restoration. The use of environmental resources should aim at provoking the least burden, contamination and damage. Responsibility for the effects produced on the environment is regulated in this Law and other regulations. State organs, local governments, natural persons and organizations, commercial entities and their representatives are under a duty to cooperate in the protection of the environment. Relative rights and obligations are set forth in this Law and in local government orders. Article 11 deals with international cooperation with special regard to neighbouring countries. Everybody has the right to environmental information. Title II deals with the protection of environmental media and with factors endangering them (hazardous substances and technologies, wastes, noise and vibration, radiation). Protected areas can be marked out for the protection of environmental media and ecosystems. Title III provides for state activities regarding environmental protection. A National Environmental Protection Programme, to be renewed every six years, represents the basis of environmental protection planning. The first Programme will be presented to Parliament in 1997, requiring the elaboration of regional and county programmes. The National Environmental Protection Council shall be established simultaneously with the entry into force of this Law as a Government advisory body. Title IV provides for local government duties (municipal and county governments). Title V deals with information systems, data collection, research and technical development, education and training. Title VI deals with financial aspects. This Law establishes the Central Environmental Protection Fund which is a state fund. Title VII provides for administrations' activities which shall cover: implementation of duties of the authorities; managing the Information System; determining the classification system of substances, goods and technologies, authorizing their sale and use; organizing duties regarding prevention of harm to the environment. Environmental Impact Assessment shall be performed before the commencement of activities with significant effects on the environment. A list of activities considered harmful is comprised in a separate Decree. Impact assessment is performed in two phases (preliminary study and detailed study). The supervision of activities in terms of conformity with environmental requirements is carried out by the inspectorate. Title VIII deals with citizen participation in environmental protection. Title IX provides for criminal, civil and administrative responsibilities, determined in this Law and in other provisions. Offenders are liable for damages caused by their activities and are under a duty to restore the original status of the environment where possible or at least cease the harmful activity. The Act contains a Chapter on water conservation.
Date of consolidation/reprint
Consolidated version
Source language


Legislation status
in force
Legislation Amendment
Original title
1995. vi LIII. t rv ny a k rnyezet v delm nek ltal nos szab lyair l
Implemented by