HUMAN RIGHTS COMMISSION - REPORT ON THE NATIONAL HEARING ON THE UNDERLYING SOCIO-ECONOMIC CHALLENGES OF MINING AFFECTED COMMUNITIES
The SAHRC launched its Report on the National Hearing on the Underlying Socio-economic Challenges of Mining-affected Communities in South Africa on the 22nd of August 2018. The FSE participated in the Hearing and many of its issues of concern are addressed in the Report. The Report may be opened here as a PDF document.
Download the judgement here.
View the FSE's comments here.
Research project attached for download.
Article written by Sheree Bega | 5 January 2021
Costly cleanup: Mine waste water is poisoning rivers. (Paul Botes/M&G)
About a third of the 476 mines audited by the department of water and sanitation have failed to comply with the conditions of their water use licences.
This emerged in response to parliamentary questions by Economic Freedom Fighters MP Mathibe Rebecca Mohlala to the minister of human settlements, water and sanitation Lindiwe Sisulu on 4 December.
Sisulu said that of the 476 mines her department has audited since 2015, 155 scored below 50%.
In 2019, a Centre for Environmental Rights report found that the department had failed to monitor compliance with the water use licences of eight large coal mining operations in Mpumalanga “and to take enforcement action where violations are obvious, painting a picture of a broken national department unable to fulfil its statutory mandate of water resource protection”.
Sisulu said that “scores of 50% or more are considered to be showing improvements in compliance. Mines that score under 50% are regarded as having an unacceptable level of compliance and are subjected to the enforcement process.”
The department regulates mining companies through water use authorisations as required by the National Water Act, which imposes conditions that promote the sustainable and beneficial use of water resources.
Sisulu said that since April 2015, the department, she said, had issued 226 administrative actions against mines found to have contravened the National Water Act and nine criminal cases had been opened against noncompliant mines.
“Only 52 of the 226 mines issued with administrative actions have water use authorisations. Subsequent to the enforcement actions by the [department of water and sanitation], 45 mines comply with the requirements of the administrative actions,” Sisulu said.
“To date, no water use entitlements have been suspended or revoked due to noncompliance. However, this remains an option in case the administrative, civil and criminal processes do not achieve desired compliance.”
Mohlala had asked Sisulu for the total number of mining companies that had failed to adhere to strict water management practices, including the prevention of pollution of groundwater resources and freshwater ecosystems, and for their names.
She wanted to know whether Sisulu had considered revoking water use licences untilmining companies committed to preventing water resources pollution.
Sisulu said she was prohibited by the Guide to Parliamentary Questions in the National Assembly from providing the names of people or specified companies.
Environmental justice activist Mariette Liefferink, of the Federation for a Sustainable Environment, said that holders of water use licences are required in terms of the terms and conditions of their water use licences to present their water quality results at catchment management forums. This is so that downstream water users are informed of the water quality and the public to assess compliance.
“Regrettably, only a few mines present us with their water quality results,” Liefferink said.
View original article here.
Comments attached for download.
Comments on Bar attached for download.
The prestigious Modern Times Review takes a look at Jozi Gold saying: “We see how secrecy and a lack of accountability shored up the power imbalances and oppressive practices of mining, which wrote the troubled history of South Africa as an extractive economy, and as a system of apartheid that mining sustained.”
Read the full review here.
Comments attached for download.
Letter addressing non-compliance by Sweet Sensations Sand Mine attached for download.
Find attached for download:
1. SAWS State of Air Bojanala
2. NW DEDECT State of Air Meeting Presentation
3. Minutes of the Bojanala ITT Meeting
The following documents are attached for download:
- Bakubung Mine Annexure A
- Bakubung Mine SAHRC Mining Communities Report
- FSE's Comments
Please find the following attached for download:
1. Basel Gold Day: How to obtain clean gold - the consumer perspective
2. Basel Gold Day: Presentation by the FSE
View the FSE's comments here....
Re-discovering Water Roots: the Consequences of Nickel Mine Prospecting in the Groot Marico River Region, South Africa
Research project attached for download....
FSE - DONATION OF TREES AND TREE PLANTING IN SIMUNYE, WEST RAND IN ASSOCIATION WITH SOUTH DEEP MINE
The FSE, in association with Gold Fields’ South Deep Mine, donated 40 white Karee Trees (Searsia penduline) during Arbor Week to the mining affected community of Simunye in the West Rand and participated in the tree planting ceremony with the community of Simunye, the local Municipality and officials from South Deep Mine. The FSE also delivered a presentation during the ceremony.
Article also available for download as an attachment.
Millions of South Africans are exposed to radioactive radon gas in their homes and workplaces every day, as the naturally occurring gas escapes through cracks in the earth. The second leading cause of lung cancer in several countries, radon breaks down and when inhaled, decaying atoms emit alpha radiation that can damage the DNA. There are no safe levels of radon concentration. The United States Environmental Protection Agency emphasises any radon exposure has some risk of causing lung cancer. Carte Blanche investigates why South Africa has no regulations to protect against radon accumulation in the home and what you can do to test your home and prevent lung cancer. Watch the video here.
Economics & Finance Courses at the University of the Witwatersrand. Mining for Development: The Taxation Linkage - Understand taxation for development and sustainability in mining. View the course here. Enrolment starts on the 7th of October 2019.
SDG6: AVAILABILITY AND SUSTAINABLE MANAGEMENT OF WATER AND SANITATION FOR ALL BY 2030 - GAPS
The Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) are a universal call to action to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure that all people enjoy peace and prosperity. The SDGs are spearheaded by the United Nations through a deliberative process involving its 193 Member States. The SDGs are a set of 17 “Global Goals” with 169 targets between them, covering a broad range of sustainable development issues. These include ending poverty and hunger, improving health and education, making cities more sustainable, combating climate change and protecting oceans and forests. The SDGs were endorsed by all Heads of State, including South Africa, who authorized it “without any reservations” on 25 September 2015. The commitment was reconfirmed by the former President during World Water Week (March 2017), which took place in South Africa, and he also called for urgent action. Goal 6 is to ensure availability and sustainable management of water and sanitation for all by 2030. The FSE is a member of the Water and Sanitation Sector Leadership Group (WSSLG) Sustainable Development Goal 6 Task Team. The attached presentation, which was presented by the Leader of the SDG6 Task team, Mr Mark Bannister has identified significant gaps. A summary of the gaps is attached hereto. The SDG Programme informs relevant ‘vehicles’ such as the National Water and Sanitation Master Plan (NW&SMP) to translate these Gaps into Actions that can be implemented by the Sector, towards the 2030 objectives. However, although these actions have been identified in the NW&SMP, most of these Actions have not been implemented. It is doubtful that South Africa will achieve the 8 targets of the SDG6 by 2030. View the SDG 6_Consolidated Gap_Action_2020 document here.View the FSE SUMMARY OF GAPS SDG6 TARGETS document here.
View the final report here....
FSE’s presentation to the Water and Sanitation Sector Leadership Group’s (WSSLG)* Sustainable Development Goal 6 Task Team on Thursday, the 26th of November 2020.
*The Water and Sanitation Sector Leadership Group (WSSLG) is the highest non-sta...