The event, which was hosted at the offices of Hogan Lovells South Africa, Sandton, commenced with warm welcomes by Dean André Boraine and Prof Annelize Nienaber, Acting Head of the Department of Public Law.
A highlight of the event was a book launch and multidisciplinary panel discussion on the new book, Hydraulic Fracturing in the Karoo, Critical Legal and Environmental Perspectives, chaired by co-editor Prof Jan Glazewski.
The panel discussion began with an insightful commentary on 'Hydraulic Fracturing and Sustainability in the US and Beyond' presented by Prof James May from Delaware Law, Widener University.
Next, Mr Jan Arkert, a geologist of Africa Exposed Consulting Engineering Geologists presented 'A scenario supposition of the effects on ecological systems by hydraulic fracturing in the Nama-Karoo, South Africa'.
Finally, Ms Mariette Liefferink, the CEO of the Federation for a Sustainable Environment, gave a thought-provoking talk on 'Fracking in the Karoo: Valuable lessons from the Witwatersrand Goldfields experience', in which she highlighted the decades of mining waste left by companies, the long-term impacts thereof on the surrounding environment in the Witwatersrand area, and the lessons to be taken into account when considering a cost-benefit analysis of fracking in the South African context.
Students and guests in attendance had the opportunity to engage in discussion with the panellists and raise questions relating to hydraulic fracturing, one of the most pressing environmental issues facing South Africa today.
We would like to thank the sponsor of the event, Juta Law, the publishers of the book, as well as Hogan Lovells South Africa for hosting the event.