There are three possible kinds of action in our country:

Judicial appeals: courts and tribunals

rechter 2Judicial appeal is intended for disputes concerning prerogatives (subjective rights) and that are brought before courts and tribunals. It covers situations where private individuals, associations or companies consider their rights to have been infringed by another individual, association or company. These can be civil cases (in relation with civil rights such as property rights or personal rights) or criminal cases (under criminal law).
A case may in the first instance be brought before the justice of the peace (for civil cases) or the police court (for criminal cases) or, if the matter is more serious, before the court of first instance (civil or criminal chamber).
Where environment issues are concerned, disputes are generally brought before the court of first instance, whether at the civil level or the criminal level (criminal court).
Associations for the protection of the environment that meet certain conditions (concerning legal status, social goals, geographical field of operations) have the option of a specific kind of appeal enabling harmful actions or actions that risk harming the environment to be stopped; this is the cessation action brought before the President of the court of the first instance. This particular kind of appeal was established by law on 12 January 1993 concerning the right to take action on environmental issues. If it is firmly established that there has been a violation or threat of violation, the President of the court may forbid the action or threat of action in order to stop or prevent any damage to the environment.
The federal authority is the competent authority in Belgium for all matters pertaining to the judiciary. See the Federal Public Service for Justice website
Administrative appeals: administrative courts and commissions
Besides, for certain kinds of disputes, specific administrative bodies and/or commissions have been created by law.
Appeals made to these bodies are called organised administrative appeals. The Regions, which are the main competent authorities for the environment, have set up numerous mechanisms, for example, to handle conflicts that may arise regarding environmental or town planning permits.
This kind of appeal can be used by eligible parties to assert their rights in the event of a breach of the right to access to environmental information (1st pillar of the Aarhus Convention - ) or in the event of failings regarding the right to participation in the decision making process (2nd pillar of the Aarhus Convention - ). In that case, the appeal should be lodged with the relevant authority, that is, one of the three Regions - who have jurisdiction over most environmental matters - or the federal state. For this specific purpose, the latter recently established the Federal appeal commission for access to environmental information (Federal appeal commission for access to environmental information). Eligible parties can make an appeal to this commission if their right to access environmental information has been infringed. An overview of the previous decisions and opinions of this commission is available on their website.
Appeals to the Council of State (administration section)
Besides functioning as a legislative council, the Council of State also has a judicial task to check that decisions taken by public authorities (governments, provinces, communes, the civil service …) comply with decrees, regulations, laws and the Constitution.
Administrative acts judged to be illegal may be suspended, or cancelled, by the Council of State.
The Council of State receives plenty of cancellation appeals, with or without a request for suspension, especially regarding grants of environmental or town planning permits.
Provisions have also been made for a procedure of extreme urgency when the impending execution of an administrative act risks causing serious and irreparable damage to the environment.