#30DaysOfGreen on the Polluter Pays Principle

On day 27 of the #30DaysofGreen campaign, we highlight environmental policy on the Polluter Pays principle.

International environmental laws entrench the polluter pays principle which is to the effect that those who produce pollutants should bear the costs of managing it and rehabilitating the environment from damage caused.

Kenya ratified this principle in its various laws including the Environment Management and Coordination Act.  In Kenya, the polluter pays principle means that the cost of cleaning up any element of the environment damaged by pollution, cost of compensating victims of pollution, cost of beneficial uses lost as a result of an act of pollution and other incidental costs are to be paid by the person convicted of pollution under the laws of Kenya.

Note however, that this should not imply that one is permitted to pollute the environment as long as they can meet the cost of rehabilitating the environment. The principle of prevention is also applicable in Kenya. The principle of prevention requires one to take all reasonable measures to prevent environmental degradation. The rationale for this approach is that prevention is less costly than allowing environmental damage to occur and then taking mitigation measures.

Do you think the National Environment and Management Authority and other government institutions have done enough to ensure that those who pollute the environment are held responsible for rehabilitation costs?

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