Tatar v Romania – case comment


James Harrison


Human rights, environment, hazardous substances, health hazards, mining operations, pollution, right to respect for private and family life, risk management, Romania


The applicants in this case, Vasile Gheorghe Tâtar and Paul Tâtar, lived approximately 100 metres from a gold mine in Baia Mare, Romania. The operators of the mine were authorised to use certain hazardous substances, including cyanide, in the mining process although the authorisation permit placed them under a general duty to protect the environment. Nevertheless, the applicants claimed that the operation of the mine had caused a violation of their rights under the European Convention on HumanRights because it entailed serious risks to human life and health. Originally, the application was based upon the right to life in Article 2 of the Convention. However, the Court decided to base its analysis on the right to private, family and home life under Article 8 of the Convention.


(2009) 21(3) Journal of Environmental Law 506-508.


Tatar v Romania – case comment