After nearly a decade of lobbying and sustained efforts by a small committee of dedicated environmentalists, the Magaliesberg has been declared a World Biosphere Reserve.
On the 2nd of April three years ago, the Centre for Environmental Rights had just opened its doors.
The first office was tiny, in Observatory, Cape Town. We had one staff member, one part-time volunteer, a telephone, a computer, some donated furniture and books, a website, one funder – and a mission: getting environmental rights onto the agenda, and providing the legal support that our stakeholders articulated so passionately in the consultation that preceded our establishment.
27 March 2013 was the closing day for comments on the draft Infrastructure Development Bill, introduced by Minister of Economic Development Ebrahim Patel in the National Assembly last month, and designed to facilitate designation, authorisation and implementation of the special infrastructure projects (SIPs). Developments that can be declared as SIPs include all major infrastructure works of “significant economic or social importance” or that would “contribute substantially” to any government infrastructure development strategy, and expressly includes mines, oil and gas pipelines, refineries, and power stations – all developments that pose high risk to the environment.
A legal opinion has been prepared for the Centre for Environmental Rights by Kate Hofmeyr and Nick Ferreira on Class Actions in repsect of damages arising from mining activities.
While mines and mining operations can contribute to economic development and provide jobs, they can also bring about suffering for individuals and communities by causing damage to the land, water and air around them.
Individuals and communities living with the negative impacts of mining can fight back by taking steps to protect themselves, their homes, their livelihoods and their neighbours. The Centre for Environmental Rights has published a guide.
On 14 April Northern Farm's 2 000 Bovelder cattle go under the hammer. The Bovelder breed has been developed over decades on Northern Farm and it has played a major role in the beef industry, providing thousands of top quality genetic breeding stock all over Southern Africa.
The future of Northern Farm, a popular weekend recreation area where a system of dams and irrigation assist in filtering water from the water treatment plant, hangs in the balance.
The farm is productive, carrying 2000-strong herd of Bovelder cattle and 350 hectares of grazing, mealies and other crops. The farm is also equipped, including specifically nine centre pivots and other irrigation equipment. The 70 contract staff employed on the farm, are being laid off.
FSE COMMENTS - NATIONAL GUIDELINE MINIMUM REQUIREMENTS PREPARING EIA FOR MINING ACTIVITIES (2).docx
(Reg. No. 2007/003002/08) NPO NUMBER 062986-NPO PBO No. (TAX EXEMPT) 930 039 506 Postnet Suite 87 Private Bag X033 RIVONIA 2128 COMMENTS ON NATIONAL GUIDELINE ON MINIMUM INFORMATION REQUIREMENTS FOR PREPARING ENVIRONMENTAL IMPACT ASSESSMENTS FOR MINING ACTIVITIES THAT REQUIRE ENVIRONMENTAL AUTHORISATION The following comments are submitted on behalf of the Federation for Sustainable Environment (FSE) The FSE is a federation of community based civil society organisations committed to the realisation of the constitutional right to an environment that is not harmful to health or well-being, and to having the environment sustainably managed and protected for future generations. Their mission is specifically focussed on addressing the adverse impacts of mining and industrial activities on the lives and livelihoods of vulnerable and disadvantaged communities who live and work near South Africa’s mines and industries. The FSE is a member of a significant number of governmental and academic forums, steering committees, task teams and teams of experts and its directors have two decades of experience with mining applications and environmental impact assessment processes.
PRELIMINARY COMMENTS ON THE BOJANALA PLATINUM DISTRICT MUNICIPALITY: ENVIRONMENTAL MANAGEMENT FRAMEWORK
DESIRED STATE OF THE ENVIRONMENT The following comments are submitted on behalf...
Comments on the Millsite Tailings Storage Facility Reclamation Project: Wetla...
Battle to save Marico's river
De Beers has secured rights to prospect for kimberlite in the sensitive catchment of Groot Marico, but residents worry that minim firms could damage their pristine river, writes Sheree Bega
Saturday Star January 27 2018 No holds barred in draft National Master Plan for Water Sheree Bega South Africa’s water scarcity could rapidly get worse as supply contracts and demand escalates due to growth, urbanisation, unsustainable use, degradation of wetlands, water losses and a decline in rainfall because of climate change. This is one of the warnings contained in the new draft National Master Plan for Water and Sanitation. Based on current demand projections, the water deficit confronting the country could be between 2.7 and 3.8 billion cubic metres, a gap of about 17%, by 2030. As of July last year, according to the draft plan, South Africa has consumed more water per capita at about 237 * /c/d than the world average of around 173 * /c/d. To address crippling water shortages, desalinated sea water in coastal areas, and treated waste water, will increasingly be brought into the water mix - together with an increase in the use of groundwater. Desalination plants should “not be implemented as an emergency scheme, only to be used intermittently or during times of drought and inadequate supply from the conventional water resources,” the draft plan cautions. “These schemes are too costly to be moth-balled for any length of time.”
POLITICS WEB MINING AND PEOPLE: THE IMPACT OF MINING ON THE SOUTH AFRICAN ECONOMY AND LIVING STANDARDS INTRODUCTION AND SYNOPSIS There are two ways of looking at mining in South Africa. The first is to see it as a sunset industry plagued by rising costs, technical difficulties, and political hostility. The second is to see it as an industry well positioned for a new lease of life despite all the vicissitudes. Even though the attractiveness of South Africa for mining investment has declined, the country still has the world's richest reserves of precious minerals and base metals. Companies both large and small would like to exploit these. Some are doing so despite the political threats. Even more will do so if the threats can be effectively managed or reduced. According to the Chamber of Mines, investment over the next few years could almost double in the absence of threats.
FSE’s Preliminary Comments on the Minister of Water and Sanitation’s decision to consolidate the 9 Catchment Management Agencies into one Catchment Management Agency.
(Reg. No. 2007/003002/08) NPO NUMBER 062986-NPO PBO No. (TAX EXEMPT) 930 039 506 Postnet Suite 87 Private Bag X033 RIVONIA 2128 COMMENTS ON THE DEPARTMENT OF WATER AND SANITATION’S DECISION TO IMPLEMENT A SINGLE CATCHMENT MANAGEMENT AGENCY (CMA) TO PERFORM WATER RESOURCE MANAGEMENT FUNCTION IN THE NINE WATER MANAGEMENT AREAS. The following comments are submitted on behalf of the Federation for a Sustainable Environment. The Federation for a Sustainable Environment (FSE) is a federation of community based civil society organisations committed to the realisation of the constitutional right to an environment that is not harmful to health or well-being, and to having the environment sustainably managed and protected for future generations. The FSE’s mission is specifically focussed on addressing the adverse impacts of mining and industrial activities on the lives and livelihoods of vulnerable and disadvantaged communities who live and work near South Africa’s mines and industries.
WATER ISSUES: Continuation of the Integrated Vaal River System Reconciliation Strategy
WATER ISSUES: Continuation of the Integrated Vaal River System Reconciliation Strategy Study (PHASE 2). The FSE is a member of the Strategy Steering Committee and actively participated in the meeting on the 27th of February, 2018.
WRITTEN SUBMISSION ON THE DRAFT 2.6: NATIONAL WATER AND SANITATION MASTER PLAN (...
Invitation by the DWS to participate in a working session regarding the draft National Water and Sanitation Master Plan: to be held on 2 February 2018 at the DBSA Conference Centre
The following preliminary comments on the National Water and Sanitation Master P...