Responsible Investment only – is the rallying call from activists ahead of the SA Investment Conference
Johannesburg Stock Exchange’s Social Responsibility Investment Index
In December 2010, the Centre for Environmental Rights and nine other environmental NGOs engaged the Johannesburg Securities’ Exchange’s Socially Responsible Investment Index after the publication of the Index’s 2010 results.
- “SRI Index ignores significant violations of environmental laws”, letter from 10 South African environmental NGOs to the JSE, 7 December 2010
- email reply from the JSE to the 10 environmental NGOs, 9 December 2010
- Reply from the 10 environmental NGOs, 17 December 2010
- JSE’s SRI Index principles now standard business practice”, FA News, 2 December 2010
- SRI companies ‘flout environmental laws’“, Legalbrief, 14 December 2010
- JSE’s green index gets red light from NGOs“, Business Report, 23 December 2010
- JSE’s socially responsible index ‘greenwash’ – NGOs, Business Report, 29 November 2013
- How the JSE’s scoring model falls short, Business Times, 1 June 2014
Compliance monitoring and enforcement statistics
On 1 March 2016, the Centre for Environmental Rights (CER) sent letters to the Minister of Water and Sanitation, the Minister of Environmental Affairs and the Minister of Mineral Resources asking them to indicate whether or not the Department of Mineral Resources’ (DMR) and the Department of Water and Sanitation’s (DWS) environmental compliance monitoring and enforcement statistics would be included in the National Environmental Compliance and Enforcement Report (NECER) for the period 2015/2016. The CER did not receive responses to its letters. However, the DWS’s compliance monitoring and enforcement statistics were included in the 2015/16 NECER. The DMR’s statistics were not included, despite a statement by the Minister of Mineral Resources to Parliament on 13 July 2015 that the mining sector’s statistics would be included in the report published annually by the Department of Environmental Affairs.
- The CER’s letter to the Minister of Environmental Affairs (1 March 2016)
- The CER’s letter to the Minister of Water and Sanitation (1 March 2016)
- The CER’s letter o the Minister of Mineral Resources (1 March 2016)
Correspondence regarding Mineral Sands Resources
In early April 2016, CER exchanged correspondence with the Australian High Commission in Pretoria about a Direct Aid Program grant of $15 000 ostensibly paid to a MRC Resources for refurbishment of a borehole. MRC Resources Pty Ltd is a shareholder in a company that is applying for a mining right for mineral sands at Xolobeni on the Wild Coast of South Africa. In March 2016, an activist opposing the mining, Sikhosiphi Bazooka Rhadebe, was assassinated.Letter from CER to Australian High Commissioner dated 4 April 2016 with attachment
Correspondence regarding the announcement by Anglo American plc that it is selling its coal and iron assets in South Africa
On 29 February 2016, the Centre for Environmental Rights (CER) published an open letter to Anglo America plc, calling on it to ensure that the sales of its coal and iron assets are conducted in a transparent manner. On 16 March 2016, Anglo American responded to the CER’s letter, stating, inter alia, that it is committed to complying with relevant laws and that it discloses some information on a voluntary basis, such as its sustainability report. It however does not agree that the principles of administrative justice are applicable to transfers in terms of section 11 of the Mineral and Petroleum Resources Development Act, 2002. On 13 April 2017, with reference its letter to Anglo American of 29 February 2016 and Anglo American’s response dated 16 March 2016, the CER addressed another letter to Anglo American calling on them to inform the CER of its plans for public participation in relation to the sale of three of its operational coal mines as well as four “closed” coal mines to Seriti Resources and to make the information relating to its proposed sale publicly available, by publication on its website.
- Open letter by the CER (29 February 2016)
- Anglo American’s response to the CER’s open letter (16 March 2016)
- CER’s letter to Anglo American (13 April 2017)