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Centre for Environmental Rights - Advancing Environmental Rights in South Africa

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Our Programmes:



The CER’s mining programme focuses on the environmental management of mining in South Africa. The goal of the programme is to promote environmental justice in the mining sector by advocating for better environmental laws and improved implementation of laws, litigating on behalf of mining-affected communities and civil society organisations, facilitating networking among relevant stakeholders and supporting activists.

For the past few years, there has been ongoing engagement between civil society, community organisations, academic institutions and law clinics increasingly concerned about the impacts of mining on the environment and on the communities that rely on those natural resources.  This coalition has now evolved into a Mining-Environment-Community Alliance (Alliance) that works together to implement a Civil Society Legal Strategy to Promote Environmental Compliance, Transparency and Accountability in Mining (Strategy).

The Strategy consists of a range of interventions, implemented independently and collaboratively by the project participants, ranging from national networking and coordination, research, advocacy and litigation.

Members of the Alliance met again in late July 2016 for the Mining and Environmental Justice Conference outside of Pretoria.

The focus of our concern and endeavours is not to oppose mining, but to ensure that adequate assessment and mitigation of detrimental impacts take place within reasonable timeframes before prospecting and mining are commenced, followed by predictable compliance monitoring of requirements set, and strong enforcement action taken when non-compliance is found. This is the only way to ensure responsible environmental practices at mines, in the interest of workers, communities and the country.

Section 24 of the Constitution of the Republic of South Africa, 1996

Everyone has the right to an environment that is not harmful to their health or well-being; and to have the environment protected, for the benefit of present and future generations, through reasonable legislative and other measures that prevent pollution and ecological degradation; promote conservation; and secure ecologically sustainable development and use of natural resources while promoting justifiable economic and social development.

Report a Violation

National Environmental Crimes & Incidents Hotline (24 hours): 0800 205 005

In addition, there are a number of national and provincial hotlines that may be useful.

Contact us

  • Address:Cape Town: Second Floor, Springtime Studios, 1 Scott Road, Observatory, 7925, Cape Town - View map
  • Address:Johannesburg: Ninth Floor, Southpoint Corner, 87 De Korte Street, Braamfontein, 2001, Johannesburg - View map