Prevention, Precaution, Administrative

The Comity of independent research and information on the genetic engineering, requested the Conseil d’Etat the cancellation of the decree n°2007-359 on the marketing authorisation procedure of products non intended for human consumption composed of genetically modified organism.

The Court ruled that article 7 of the Charter for the Environment (organic law of 1st March 2005) which gives to the legislator the competence to define conditions and limits of the right to public information, had the effect to repeal the law n°92-654 of 13 July 1992. This law stipulates that it is for the regulatory power to provide details and requirements for public information on the effect of deliberated release of genetically modified organisms.
Thus, the Court decided that Article 3 of the Charter must be interpreted as article 7, that is to say it reserves for the legislator the definition of prevention conditions of susceptible impacts to the environment or, the limitations of theirs consequences. As a result, the application measures involved  do not fall within the regulatory power.

Consequently, the Court rescinded the decree n°2007-359, that transposed Directive 2001/18/CE, for lack of powers. Obligations of this Directive must, since the Charter for Environment was brought into force, be implemented by the legislator. The cancellation of the decree is postponed to 30 June 2010 to avoid that an immediate cancellation failed to have regard to the constitutional requirement of transposition of directives.