I.The purpose of the SOP
This general Standard Operating Procedure (SOP) is a collection of written instructions and legal guidelines for the operational activities that are undertaken by the competent Kosovo authorities on environmental protection and prevention. This procedure is to ensure prevention, detection and investigation of the environmental crimes in Kosovo by taking into account the Directive 2004/35/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council of 21 April 2004 on environmental liability with regard to the prevention and remedying of environmental damage. This Directive establishes a framework for environmental liability based on the polluter pays principle, with a view to preventing and remedying environmental damage. The purpose of the SOP is to increase administrative capacities of the public authorities in Kosovo in the area of environmental sector and the rule of law for an effective coordination and intra-institutional communication on procedures involving environmental crime prevention and investigation.
The SOP describes the procedures and tasks that are undertaken by state organizations and various public stakeholders on environmental crime prevention and detection and its role is to improve the performance of the competent national authorities in preventing, detecting and investing environmental crimes. Furthermore, this document contains sector specific procedures which accompany and complement the general SOPs on Environmental Crimes, on Environmental Misdemeanor Offences and on Environmental Liability by highlight special legal aspects that are typical for the respective sectorial procedures.