Spanish Administrative Law has evolved under foreign influences and, in contrast with those States with a strong tradition of Administrative Law, Spanish Law is in a better position to receive further influences due to its own idiosyncrasy. The implementation of the Aarhus Convention (AC) is clearly a further example of new inputs, but in this case from international/European Law. This Article will focus on the three pillars of the AC making contrast between the pre- and the post-implementation phase, trying to emphasize progresses and paradoxical steps backward.
The principles underlying the Spanish legal order concerning the three pillars of the AC have a different depth in the Spanish legal system. Access to information has traditionally been limited to a defensive perspective related to the audit alteram partem principle and progress is evidently related to a top-down influence.
Regarding participation, there exists an old tradition not only linked to the right to be heard, but to public participation in and of itself. Finally, with regard to access to justice, the Spanish legal order underwent major development after the Constitution of 1978 was enacted. A broad legal standing had been recognized by case law before the new Administrative Justice of 1998 was passed.European Public Law