Codification of environmental law has been underway in Estonia from 2007. As the first result of this process, the General Part of the Environmental Code Act (GPECA) was adopted in February 2011. Among other provisions, the framework act establishes operators' general obligations.
These obligations, applicable to all operators, are focused on prevention of environmental hazards and implementation of precautionary measures in order to minimize environmental risks to the reasonable extent. Being generally applicable and abstract in their nature, they constitute a ``safety net'' supporting the often overly casuistic and fragmented legal structure in the present environmental law (e.g. air quality law, nature protection law), national as well as EU.
This article aims to draw attention to the concept of operators' general obligations and to highlight their possible role as tools for implementation of environmental policy goals both on EU and national level.European Energy and Environmental Law Review