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Centre for Environmental Rights - Advancing Environmental Rights in South Africa

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Our Programmes:

Mining

Key correspondence

Automatically available documents

On 27 September 2016, the Centre for Applied Legal Studies (CALS) and the Centre for Environmental Rights (CER) sent a letter to the Director-General (DG) of the Department of Mineral Resources (DMR) requesting that certain documents, including mining rights, prospecting rights, social and labour plans and environmental management programmes, are made available automatically – without the need to submit a formal request for those records in terms of the Promotion of Access to Information Act, 2000 (PAIA)

Permission to conduct commercial mining in protected environments

On 17 February, the Association for Water and Rural Development (AWARD), BirdLife South Africa (BirdLife), Centre for Environmental Rights (CER), Endangered Wildlife Trust (EWT), Federation for a Sustainable Environment (FSE), groundWork, the Mining and Environmental Justice Community Network of South Africa (MEJCON-SA) and the Worldwide Fund for Nature South Africa (WWF-SA) wrote a letter to the Minister of Environmental Affairs noting their concern for the dangerous precedent set by her recent decision to allow commercial mining in the Mabola Protected Environment in terms of section 48(1)(b) of the National environmental Management: Protected Areas Act, 2003 (NEMPAA). In the letter, the Minister was also called upon to conduct pubic participation in relation to all decisions relating to the exercise of her discretion in terms of section 48(1)(b) of the NEMPAA.

Correspondence with the Chamber of Mines regarding Zero Hour

Following the launch of Zero Hour in May 2016, the Chamber of Mines addressed a letter to the CER, offering its perspectives on the report. The CER has replied to the Chamber’s letter.

Submission to the South African Human Rights Commission on Mining-affected Communities

The South African Human Rights Commission (SAHRC) is conducting a national investigative hearing on the underlying socio-economic challenges in mining-affected communities in South Africa. SAHRC invited the CER to make submissions to it relating to the environmental impacts of mining for he purposes of its hearing.

The hearings were scheduled to take place on 13 and 14 September 2016

Review of the Mineral and Petroleum Resources Development Act, 2002 and the Mineral and Petroleum Resources Development Amendment Act, 2008

In 2011, the CER addressed a letter to the Minister of Mineral Resources requesting an an opportunity for non-governmental organisations to discuss review of the Mineral and Petroleum Resources Development Act, 2002 (MPRDA) to the extent that it relates to environment, environmental impact assessment and the MPRDA Amendment Act, 2008.

Also on 2011, the CER addressed a letter on behalf of 13 non-governmental organisations to the Minster of Mineral Resources proposing amendments to the MPRDA

The Mineral and Petroleum Resources Development Amendment Bill was introduced to Parliament in 2013 and it is still being considered by Parliament.

No-go areas for mines

n 2010, the CER wrote a letter on behalf of eight civil society organisations (CSOs) and non-governmental organisations (NGOs) to the the Task Team on Mining in Sensitive Areas, recommending the declaration of no-go areas for mines in sensitive ecosystems.

In 2011, the CER wrote a letter on behalf of thirteen NGOs and CSOs to the Minister of Mineral Resources requesting the Minister to exercise her discretion in terms of section 49 of the Mineral and Petroleum Resources Development Act, 2002 to prohibit and restrict prospecting and mining operations in areas of critical biodiversity and critical hydrological value and sensitivity. The CER did not receive a response from the Minister of Mineral Resources.

Acid Mine Drainage

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

  • Telephone:+27 21 447 1647
  • Fax:+27 86 730 9098
  • Email:info@cer.org.za
  • Address:Second Floor, Springtime Studios, 1 Scott Road, Observatory, 7925, Cape Town
  • Map:View map