Water News

Wednesday, 10 April 2019 10:17

Summary of water quantity and quality challenges within the Vaal River system grounded upon the information which was presented by the Department of Water and Sanitation's Directorate: National water resource planning to the strategy steering Committee (SSC) for the continuation of the integrated Vaal River system.

Reconciliation Strategy Guide – PHASE 2 attached for donwload.

Monday, 01 April 2019 10:16

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ABOUT OUR PROPERTY RIGHTS COVERAGE

This story is part of  place , our new website shining a light on land & property rights around the world.

 

Access to water is a hot topic in South Africa - and a growing number of countries hit by climate change, burgeoning populations and poor governance

By Kim Harrisberg

 

Faeces in the kitchen: South Africans call for better sewage systems

by Kim Harrisberg | @KimHarrisberg | Thomson Reuters Foundation

Thursday, 21 March 2019 07:59 GMT

 

JOHANNESBURG, March 21 (Thomson Reuters Foundation) - Raw excrement, condoms and sanitary products regularly spill into homes and parks, South Africans said ahead of Friday's World Water Day - just some of about 4.5 billion people globally without safe sanitation, promised for all by 2030.

Residents are lobbying for urgent rehabilitation of sewage works by South Africa's Department of Water and Sanitation, widely criticised for lack of investment, non-payment of contractors, poor revenue collection, water theft and leakage.

"We have had water flowing into our street and home for the last three years," Heather Crosley, who lives in South Africa's biggest city, Johannesburg, told the Thomson Reuters Foundation.

"When it rains heavily, the manhole lids blows off; sewage rushes down the road and sometimes comes into our kitchen. We have found condoms, tampons and faeces in our kitchen on more than one occasion."

Under global development goals agreed in 2015, governments pledged to provide access to water and sanitation for all by 2030. But three in 10 people worldwide do not have a water source free from faecal and chemical contamination.

The spokesman for the water department, Sputnik Ratau, said setting up an independent regulator to improve management was "paramount", although he did not have a specific timeline.

"The Ministry and Department are seized with the work of ensuring this comes to pass," he said.

Access to water is a hot topic in South Africa - and a growing number of countries hit by climate change, burgeoning populations and poor governance - as drought last year triggered warnings that Cape Town's taps could run dry.

In Johannesburg's Soweto township, residents often see untreated waste water and excrement flow into tributaries that lead to the Vaal River, one of the country's main water sources.

"In Snake Park, sewage is currently flowing into a community-built park so the children have nowhere safe to play," said community activist Tiny Dlamini.

Untreated water can cause diarrhea and cholera, which can be fatal, particularly for children.

About 56 percent of South Africa's waste water treatment works are in a poor or critical state, said Mariette Liefferink, head of the Federation for a Sustainable Environment, which campaigns against water pollution caused by mining.

"This is a perfect storm of mismanagement that currently impacts 14 million South Africans without access to decent sanitation," said Christine Colvin, a water expert with the World Wide Fund for Nature South Africa.

(Reporting by Kim Harrisberg @kimharrisberg, Editing by Katy Migiro. Please credit the Thomson Reuters Foundation, the charitable arm of Thomson Reuters, that covers humanitarian news, women's and LGBT+ rights, human trafficking, property rights, and climate change. Visit http://news.trust.org

Tuesday, 06 November 2018 11:49

THE FSE PRESENTED ON INVITATION TO THE SOUTH AFRICAN HUMAN RIGHTS COMMISION ON THE POLLUTION OF THE VAAL. 

ATTACHED ARE THE PRESENTATIONS.

Tuesday, 31 July 2018 12:35

More than two decades ago, science advocate IsmailMore than two decades ago, science advocate IsmailSerageldin forewarned that “the wars of the next centurywill be fought over water, unless we change our approachto managing this precious and vital resource”. Thissentiment is perilously close for comfort for South Africa,whose water crisis is manifesting with dire consequences.Given that the country has done little in the recent past to rectifyits water challenges, it will soon pay the price, financially, socially andeconomically, says Mariette Liefferink, CEO of the Federation for aSustainable Environment (FSE).

The rest of the Document may be opened as a PDF document.

Thursday, 03 May 2018 08:56

SUMMARY OF WATER RELATED CHALLENGES IN SOUTH AFRICA

2018

INTRODUCTION

This summary was compiled by the Federation for a Sustainable Environment (FSE) grounded upon its involvement as member of the various organs of state’s project steering committees, study steering committees, expert steering committees, advisory committees, task teams, forums, etc. since and prior to its inauguration in 2007.

Thursday, 29 March 2018 13:16

UPDATE: Appeal against Water Use License issued to Atha-Africa Ventures (Pty) Ltd to be heard at a future date

In December 2016, the Endangered Wildlife Trust and the Federation for a Sustainable Environment appealed against the grant of a water use licence to Atha-Africa Ventures (Pty) Ltd (Atha) for its proposed Yzermyn underground coal mine in the Mabola Protected Environment.

Wednesday, 28 February 2018 09:48

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.

Wednesday, 07 February 2018 11:20

WRITTEN SUBMISSION ON THE DRAFT 2.6: NATIONAL WATER AND SANITATION MASTER PLAN (NW&SMP)

 In this document, the Federation for a Sustainable Environment (“FSE”) submits comments on the National Water and Sanitation Master Plan, draft 2.6 (the “draft plan”).

 THE 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.  

 In accordance with the above-mentioned mission, the FSE’s comments are limited to matters pertaining to the mining industry. The FSE’s comments will be substantiated by real examples within the scope of the FSE’s experience and our active participation in a significant number of environmental impacts assessments, environmental management programme reports, water use license applications, environmental authorisations, steering committees, forums, task teams, teams of experts, academic research groups, boards, etc. over a period of 15 (fifteen years).[1]

[1] Kindly note that the Legal Resources Centre assisted with this publication.

Thursday, 25 January 2018 12:28

The following preliminary comments on the National Water and Sanitation Master Plan (NW&SMP) 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.  

 

In accordance with the above-mentioned mission, the FSE’s comments are limited to matters pertaining to the mining industry. The FSE’s comments will be substantiated by real examples within the scope of the FSE’s experience and our active participation in a significant number of environmental impacts assessments, environmental management programme reports, water use license applications, environmental authorisations, steering committees, forums, task teams, teams of experts, academic research groups, boards, etc. over a period of 15 (fifteen years).

 

The FSE, with the support and representation of the Legal Resource Centre (LRC), is currently in the process of preparing additional comments on the NW&SMP.   In view of the aforesaid, we respectfully request allowance to refine and augment our preliminary comments.

Thursday, 03 August 2017 13:27

Last week, the coalition of eight civil society and community organisations that has been resisting the proposed coal mine inside a protected area and strategic water source area in Mpumalanga launched further proceedings in the Pretoria High Court.

Wednesday, 26 July 2017 12:25

THE POTENTIAL to create 100 climate jobs and to help : bring a "dead river system" back to life -that's the ration­ale behind a proposed pilot project to heal one of Gau­teng's most heavily polluted river systems, the Tweelopiespruit, which has been con­taminated by more than a century of mining.

Wednesday, 26 July 2017 12:20

SOUTH Africans have to "change their mindsets" that they can't drink acid mine drainage (AMD).