China: 粤港澳大湾区环境民事纠纷诉调衔接机制之构想

Last Updated: 8 May 2019
Article by DeHeng Law Offices
Most Read Contributor in China, July 2019

粤港澳大湾区环境民事纠纷诉调衔接机制之构想——以深圳前海合作区人民法院诉调对接中心为样本

摘要:

粤港澳大湾区的环境民事案件多,审判人员少且专业程度不高,严重影响办案质量和效率,不利于改善和提升粤港澳大湾区法制环境和营商环境。借鉴深圳前海合作区人民法院诉调对接中心的成功经验、探索建立粤港澳大湾区环境民事纠纷诉调衔接机制既必要、也可行。具体设想是成立粤港澳大湾区环境民事纠纷诉调对接中心,配备先行调解、涉港澳案件联合调解、中立第三方评估及司法确认等制度,定能发挥积极作用。

关键词:粤港澳大湾区环境民事纠纷 诉调衔接

一、建立粤港澳大湾区环境民事纠纷诉调衔接机制的必要性

(一)是改善和提升粤港澳大湾区法制环境和营商环境的需要

粤港澳大湾区是我国开放程度最高、经济活力最强的区域之一。建设粤港澳大湾区,是习近平总书记亲自谋划、亲自部署、亲自推动的重大国家战略。

粤港澳大湾区建设是支持港澳融入中国整体发展的国家级发展战略,它同时又联结沟通了"一国两制"与"一带一路"两大方略。多元化纠纷解决机制作为粤港澳大湾区制度建设的一部分,通过完善民商事纠纷解决机制,加快推进诉调衔接,以法律保护促进深度融合,提升区域法治竞争力。因此建立粤港澳大湾区环境民事纠纷诉调衔接机制也是完善和提升大湾区法制环境和营商环境的核心要素。

(二)是解决粤港澳大湾区环境民事诉讼案多人少矛盾的需要

1.粤港澳大湾区的环境民事诉讼案件多

随着"史上最严环保法"的出台以及民诉法公益诉讼条款的增加,近年来环境诉讼案件、特别是环境民事诉讼案件逐年增多。2018年,全国法院共受理环境资源刑事一审案件26481件,环境资源民事一审案件192008件,环境资源行政一审案件42235件。 1合计260724件,其中民事诉讼案件占比73.64%。

2016年至2018年上半年,广东法院审结环境资源类案件6.3万余件,收、结案总数居于全国前列。其中,涉资源类案件占比较高,占各类环资案件受理总数的95.6%。环资民事、行政案件则主要集中在珠三角地区,广州、深圳、佛山、东莞、惠州五地法院环境资源民事、行政案件收案数量占到全省同类案件收案总数的85.9%。 2

以上数据显示,环境民事诉讼案件逐年增多,特别是环境民事诉讼案件占比很大。就广东而言,不仅环境民事案件占比很大,而且案发地主要集中在粤港澳大湾区广东九市中的五个。因此,不难得出结论,即粤港澳大湾区的环境民事案件增幅大、数量多。

2.粤港澳大湾区环境民事诉讼审判人员少

近年来,广东法院已在大力加强生态环境审判工作。2016年,广东高院正式设立环境资源审判庭,统筹全省法院环境资源审判工作。截止2018年上半年,全省已有环境资源审判庭7个、环境资源审判专门合议庭32个、环境保护巡回法庭3个。 3

我们不妨大致计算下,32个合议庭加上3个巡回法庭,法官也就100来人,2016年至2018年上半年,审结6.3万余件,即每人每月平均审结21件,每人每个工作日平均审结1件,还没有计算尚未审结部分。面对日益增多的环境民事案件,专门从事环境审判的法官显然人数不足。

案多人少,这是目前广东法院环境民事审判工作面临的最主要矛盾。这个问题不解决好,不仅影响审判效率,而且影响审判质量。

建立粤港澳大湾区环境民事纠纷诉调衔接机制可以有效解决这个难题。

(三)是解决粤港澳大湾区环境民事诉讼审判专业化的需要

环境污染有大气污染、水污染、土壤污染、噪声污染、放射性污染、电子废物污染、固体废物污染等,污染情形多;污染空间也可能很大,有的涉及地表、有的涉及地下、有的涉及大气、有的均有涉及。各种污染的标准不同,造成的损害程度各异。这些涉及很多环境自然科学知识,专业性很强。

法官审理案件,不仅要查明是否有污染、污染源是什么、污染程度多大、污染有无造成损害以及造成的损害有多大、还要查明因果关系、责任大小,等等。这些不仅要求法官具备扎实的法律知识,还需具备一定的环境专门知识,专业化程度要求很高。

我省高院及部分市级法院虽成立了环境资源审判庭,组织机构有了一定保障,但法官环境专业知识普遍不够,这会大大影响办案效率及办案质量。司法实践中,法院审理环保民事案件的效率可能会超出我们的想象。 4

因此,建立粤港澳大湾区环境民事纠纷诉调衔接机制,聘请既懂法律、又懂环境的专业人员参与调解可以缓解该问题。

二、建立粤港澳大湾区环境民事纠纷诉调衔接机制的可行性

建立粤港澳大湾区环境民事纠纷诉调衔接机制不仅必要,而且可行。

(一)建立粤港澳大湾区环境民事纠纷诉调衔接机制符合《粤港澳大湾区发展规划纲要》要求

自2005年"二五"改革纲要提出"多元化纠纷解决机制改革"以来,多元化纠纷解决机制日益受到理论界和实务界的关注,逐步成为我国加强社会治理和深化司法改革的重要内容之一,十八届四中全会将"完善多元化纠纷解决机制"作为法治社会建设的重要内容写入《中共中央关于全面推进依法治国若干重大问题的决定》。 5

2019年2月18日,中共中央、国务院发布《粤港澳大湾区发展规划纲要》。其中多个章节专门论及湾区生态文明建设及多元化纠纷解决机制,为建立粤港澳大湾区环境民事纠纷诉调衔接机制指明了方向并提出了具体要求。

《纲要》第七章《推进生态文明建设》要求粤港澳大湾区实行最严格的生态环境保护制度,打造生态防护屏障、加强环境保护和治理、创新绿色低碳发展模式,建设美丽湾区。实行最严格的生态环境保护制度,就意味着今后环境民事纠纷只会多,不会少。第九章《紧密合作共同参与"一带一路"建设》明确要求加强粤港澳司法交流与协作,推动建立共商、共建、共享的多元化纠纷解决机制,为粤港澳大湾区建设提供优质、高效、便捷的司法服务和保障,着力打造法治化营商环境,打造具有全球竞争力的营商环境。第十章《共建粤港澳合作发展平台》要求加强法律事务合作,构建多元化争议解决机制,联动香港打造国际法律服务中心和国际商事争议解决中心。

(二)建立粤港澳大湾区环境民事纠纷诉调衔接机制符合最高人民法院司法改革要求

为贯彻落实《中共中央关于全面推进依法治国若干重大问题的决定》以及中共中央办公厅、国务院办公厅《关于完善矛盾纠纷多元化解机制的意见》,2016年6月28日,最高人民法院发布《关于人民法院进一步深化多元化纠纷解决机制改革的意见》(法发〔2016〕14号),该《意见》不仅明确了多元化纠纷解决机制的指导思想、主要目标和基本原则,还就平台建设、制度建设、程序安排及以工作保障等方面都提出了具体意见。其中明确主要目标是根据"国家制定发展战略、司法发挥引领作用、推动国家立法进程"的工作思路,建设功能完备、形式多样、运行规范的诉调对接平台,畅通纠纷解决渠道,引导当事人选择适当的纠纷解决方式;合理配置纠纷解决的社会资源,完善和解、调解、仲裁、公证、行政裁决、行政复议与诉讼有机衔接、相互协调的多元化纠纷解决机制。

为贯彻落实最高人民法院的上述《意见》,2017年3月9日广东省高级人民法院发布《关于进一步加强诉调对接工作的规定》(粤高法发〔2017〕1号),对如何健全调解制度、如何完善程序安排、如何创新调解机制、如何规范立案前后的调解流程等都做了具体部署。

(三)建立粤港澳大湾区环境民事纠纷诉调衔接机制有成功经验可供借鉴

深圳前海合作区人民法院(下称"前海法院")是最高人民法院确立的综合性司法改革示范法院,2014年12月2日经最高人民法院批准成立,2015年1月28日揭牌。

前海法院有三个发展定位:致力于具有国际公信力的一流法院建设,为建设社会主义法治示范区作出贡献;致力于服务国家发展战略布局的落实,为自贸区与合作区发展提供有力的司法保障;致力于综合性司法改革示范法院建设,为全国法院全面深化司法改革提供实践样本。其目标是建设一流法院,以一流的司法服务创造一流的法治环境;以一流的司法水平打造一流的司法公信力;以一流的司法品质塑造一流的国际司法形象。 6

作为建设全国综合性司法改革示范法院的一项重要探索和举措,2016年5月28日前海法院揭牌成立诉调对接中心。之后,诉调对接中心先后与深圳市律师协会、深圳国际仲裁院等30多家境内外机构建立了紧密合作关系。制定和完善了数个多元化纠纷解决文件指引,使调解工作机制落地见效。诉调对接中心成立2年多来,取得了令人瞩目的成果。2018年,诉调对接中心共处理案件3102件,比2017年的921件同比增长237%;经筛选可调解案件有1659件,调解成功723件,比2017年378件同比增长91%。 7调解成功率达43.58%。 8

大量案件的成功调解,不仅有利于节约司法资源,切实缓解长期困扰法院的"案多人少"难题,也大大降低了当事人的纠纷解决成本、减少诉累。

为什么粤港澳大湾区环境民事纠纷诉调衔接机制可以借鉴前海法院诉调对接中心的经验?

1.所处地理环境与法律环境相同

地理上,前海是大湾区的一部分,仍在大湾区范围内。前海所处的法律环境与大湾区所处的法律环境完全相同。粤港澳大湾区建设是在一个国家、两种制度、三个关税区、三种货币的条件下建设的,是前无古人的崭新事业,没有先例可循、没有模式可套,必须坚持法治先行。 9

2.处理的案件性质都属于民事案件

环境民事纠纷属于民事纠纷。目前前海法院集中管辖深圳市涉外、涉港澳台民事案件,因此前海法院诉调对接中心处理的也是涉外、涉港澳台民事案件;粤港澳大湾区环境民事纠纷诉调衔接机制要处理的也是民事纠纷。因两者案件性质相同,两者处理程序可以复制。

3.处理的案件专业性要求都高

如前所述,处理环境民事纠纷要求工作人员不仅熟谙法律、还需了解环保知识,专业化程度要求高。前海法院诉调对接中心处理的是涉外、涉港澳台民事案件,这就要求工作人员不仅熟悉内地法律,还需了解外国及港澳法律,专业性同样很高。

4.都可以聘请外国及港澳专家处理

因为专业性要求强,截至2018年底,前海法院诉调对接中心共聘请了78名外籍和港澳台籍调解员,其中22名外籍和港澳台籍律师参与纠纷化解。 10鉴于环境民事纠纷专业性强,我们也可以借鉴。因为国外一些国家及香港关于环境保护无论立法、还是执法及司法都早于中国内地,有很多成熟和好的经验值得学习和借鉴。如瑞典、澳大利亚、新西兰等不少国家设立环境法院专门处理环境纠纷,其中澳大利亚新南威尔士州于1980年9月1日成立的土地与环境法院是世界上第一所专门的环境高等法院。 11在 1925年至1965年这40年间,新西兰制定了超过60部与环境保护有关的法律。 12香港特区政府的环境规制政策由一系列重要条例组合而成。1959年,香港颁布《保持空气清洁条例》,由此开启香港环境规制的序幕,目前香港的环境规制法律由控制污染、保护自然和环境评价三个部分构成。 13香港环境法例的一个特色就是将环境违法行为全面刑事化。 14

相比而言,澳门无论环境立法、还是环境执法,相对落后。澳门环境立法主要是澳葡政府早在 1991年颁布的《环境纲要法》,因此在许多环境法领域属于空白,急需做出扩充。在行政执法上,澳门缺乏独立的环境执法机关,这使得很长一段时期两地无法在环境行政执法领域进行合作。澳门政府已经充分意识到这一点,适应内地在大部制改革中,环境保护总局升格为环境保护部的现实,于2009年以颁布专门法律的形式,设立了具有行政职能的环境保护局。 15

不仅可以特聘内地的环保法律专家和环保技术专家参与调解,也可以聘请外籍和港澳专家参与调解。尤其是环保民事纠纷当事人一方或双方涉外或涉港澳时,聘请外籍和港澳籍专家参与调解就更有优势或更显必要。

三、建立粤港澳大湾区环境民事纠纷诉调衔接机制的构想

粤港澳大湾区环境民事纠纷诉调衔接机制的实体为粤港澳大湾区环境民事纠纷诉调对接中心。该中心是专门负责环境民事纠纷的诉前调解机构,建议该中心设在广东高院,具体工作由广东高院环境资源审判庭负责指导。为方便当事人和调解员,根据珠三角地形及与港澳的地缘关系,建议在广州、深圳和珠海三市中级法院设立分部。

该中心将广东、香港、澳门律师协会、高校环境法律教学及科研机构、环境科研机构、环境鉴定机构、环境产业行业协会等组织引入法院,建立特邀调解员名册,调解员必须是熟悉环境法律或环境科学的专业人员。

根据当事人自愿原则,在案件开庭前委托调解员进行调解,调解成功后由法院审查确认调解协议法律效力,从而灵活、高效地解决环境民事纠纷。

为保障环境民事纠纷诉调衔接机制落地见效,应当建立以下几项制度:

1.先行调解制度

先行调解,既包括案件立案前的先行调解,也包括案件立案后、开庭前的先行调解。先行调解由法院特邀调解员主持。

除非当事人书面明确表示不同意调解或一方当事人下落不明,其他案件一律先行调解。调解成功的,当事人无需缴交诉讼费。调解不成功的,转审判程序,当事人需依法缴交诉讼费。

2.涉外、涉港澳案件联合调解制度

如环保民事纠纷涉外、或涉港涉澳,邀请外籍或港澳籍调解员与广东调解员一并参与调解,充分发挥其积极作用。

3.中立第三方评估制度

案件中立第三方评估是指根据当事人一方或双方申请,由诉调对接中心安排中立第三方对原告胜诉的可能性作出专业评估报告,从中立和专业角度明确案件可能的判决结果,从而提高当事人理解和预判案件结果,缩小双方争议,增强当事人预测判决结果的可靠性,促使当事人和解或调解解决纠纷。

4.司法确认制度

经调解员工作,当事人达成调解协议的,当事人可以申请对调解协议进行司法确认。经法官审查,调解协议符合法律规定的,裁定调解协议有效;不符合法律规定的,裁定驳回申请,告知当事人可以通过调解方式变更原调解协议或者达成新的调解协议,重新确认。司法确认的申请及审查方式,均可现场申请和审查,也可远程申请和审查。

Footnotes

1参见最高人民法院《中国环境资源审判2017-2018》白皮书。

2参见广东高院《广东环境资源审判(2016.01-2018.06)》白皮书。

3参见广东高院《广东环境资源审判(2016.01-2018.06)》白皮书。

42018年和2019年笔者在湖南和广西先后代理、参与了两宗环境民事公益诉讼案件,该两宗案件均为当地法院受理的首宗环境民事公益诉讼案件。笔者代理的被告企业均为湖南和广西的行业领头企业。湖南那宗案件原告于2017年11月21日递交立案材料,法院受理后超过一年至今还未安排开庭。广西那个案件被告是2018年8月8日收到应诉通知和举证通知,至今也没有安排开庭。而且该两案均尚未启动鉴定程序。

5张西恒:《近年来国内环境纠纷多元化解机制研究述评》,载2018年3月《郑州大学学报(哲学社会科学版)》第51卷第2期。

6以上信息来源:深圳前海合作区人民法院官网。

7参见:《深圳前海合作区人民法院召开2018年度诉调对接中心工作总结会》,在2019年1月2日深圳前海合作区人民法院微信公众号。

8笔者是前海法院聘请的第一批内地律师调解员。2018年3月8日前海法院安排我值班并分配我10宗案件,当天成功调解5宗并都作了司法确认。笔者因此被前海法院评为2018年度优秀调解员。

9林晔晗 吁青:《为营造粤港澳大湾区法治环境作出新贡献——访全国人大代表,广东省委副书记、省长马兴瑞》,载2019年3月 14日人民法院报。

10参见:《数说2018:前海法院这份成绩单请查收》,载2019年1月29日深圳前海合作区人民法院微信公众号。

11杨帆、黄斌:《瑞典、澳大利亚、新西兰、美国的环境法院及其启示》,载《法律适用》2014年第4期。

12徐平、周晗隽:《新西兰环境纠纷解决机制及其启示》,载《湖北大学学报(哲学社会科学版)》,2015年1月第42卷第1期。

13张显未:《粤港环境规制政策的比较研究》,载《经济研究导刊》,2018年第30期,总第380期。

14连远帆:《香港特区环境保护司法实践分析》,载《人民司法》,2016年第4期。

15高峰:《浅论澳门与内地的环境法冲突》,载《经济研究导刊》,2010年第31期,总第105期。

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