New book: Shale Gas, the Environment and Energy Security

The book is offering the first formal assessment of the legality of fracking bans and moratoria. Ruven Fleming examines how changes in the constitutional set-ups of EU Member States over the last 25 years have substantially altered the legal leverage of environmental protection and energy security as state objectives. He argues that the practical consequence of these changes has been the self-inflicted curtailment of legislative discretion. Fleming further proposes a new methodology  for the development of legally sound regulation of new energy technologies in the context of the energy transition. More information can be found on the website of Edward Elgar Publishing.


This pioneering and in-depth study into the regulation of shale gas extraction examines how changes in the constitutional set-ups of EU Member States over the last 25 years have substantially altered the legal leverage of environmental protection and energy security as state objectives.

In this timely book, Ruven Fleming argues that the practical consequence of these changes has been the self-inflicted curtailment of legislative discretion. The first to formally assess the legality of fracking bans and moratoria, he exposes their flawed construction, revealing that the current regulations could be successfully challenged in front of courts of EU Member States. Reaching beyond shale gas, innovative chapters further propose a new methodology – the so called triad of objectives, principles and rules – to develop legally sound regulation of new energy technologies in the context of the energy transition.

Students and scholars across environmental and energy law will find this book an essential contribution to the sparse literature regarding the legal aspects of fracking and shale gas in Europe. The focus on a new legal methodology will also provide guidance to decision-makers and regulators alike.
‘In this book Ruven Fleming has commendably captured some of the core legal issues in relation to shale gas development in the EU. It is a worthy read for energy law scholars who want to see how the EU is responding to this new development across the EU. Further, there are some interesting conclusions worthy of further debate and research for future scholars! A delightful addition to the literature!’
– Raphael Heffron, Queen Mary University of London, UK

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