The proposed Khanyisa IPP: groundWork v Department of Environmental Affairs and ACWA Power Khanyisa Thermal Power Station (RF) (Pty) Ltd
In this matter, groundWork is challenging a decision by the Department of Environmental Affairs (DEA) grant environmental authorisation for ACWA Power Khanyisa Thermal Power Station RF (Pty) Ltd (ACWA)’s proposed coal-fired power station in terms of the National Environmental Management Act, 1998 (NEMA). An application has been launched in the High Court by the Centre for Environmental Rights, on behalf of groundWork, for an order setting aside the DEA’s decision.
groundWork applied to the Minister of Environmental Affairs (Minister) for condonation for the late lodging of an appeal against the DEA’s decision in terms of the NEMA, but the Minister refused to grant groundWork condonation. An application has therefore been launched out of the High Court for an order reviewing and setting aside the decision the DEA. The DEA’s decision is challenged on the basis that it did not take into account the climate change impacts of ACWA’s proposed coal-fired power station.
Internal Appeal: Environmental Authorisation
- Cover letter (18 April 2017)
- Request for condonation (18 April 2017)
- ACWA’s response to the request for condonation (16 May 2017):
- Cover letter (16 May 2017)
- Response to request for condonation (16 May 2017)
High Court Review Proceedings: Environmental Authorisation
- Notice of motion and founding affidavit (18 April 2017)
- Respondents Notice of Intention to Oppose (28 September 2017)
- Rule 53 Notice (15 May 2018)
- Rule 30A Notice (22 March 2018)
- Rule 30A Application to Compel (10 October 2018)
- Rule 30A Stamped and served Court Order (6 February 2019)
- Supplementary Founding Affidavit: Part 1 and Part 2 (28 June 2019)
- Correspondence from State Attorney notifying the Applicants of the expiry of the Khanyisa Environmental Authorisation ( 20 September 2019)
- Further Supplementary Affidavit regarding the expiry of the Khanyisa Environmental Authorisation and Filing Notice (18 December 2019)
- Section 28(1) notice to amend the Notice of Motion (19 December 2019);
- Amended pages of the Notice of Motion and Filing Notice (5 February 2020).
- Final notice of set down (12 May 2021)
- Court Order (1 June 2021)
Internal Appeal: Provisional Atmospheric Emission Licence Transfer
In October 2017, the Nkangala District Municipality approved the transfer of the provisional atmospheric emission licence for the proposed Khanyisa coal-fired power station from Anglo Operations (Pty) Ltd to ACWA Power Khanyisa Thermal Power Station RF (Pty) Ltd. The Centre for Environmental rights, on behalf of groundWork lodged an appeal against that decision.
- Covering letter (13 November 2017)
- Notice of appeal (13 November 2017)
- Supplementary Appeal (10 April 2018)
Preliminary Hearing on the Locus Standi and Jurisdiction
- Registrar’s Directions on Locus Standi and Jurisdiction (23 October 2018)
- groundWork’s Heads of Argument (2 November 2018)
- ACWA’s Heads of Argument (12 November 2018)
- Nkangala District Municipality’s Order of the Appeals Registrar on Locus Standi and Jurisdiction (13 December 2018)
- ACWA’s Objections to the appeal (10 May 2019)
- groundWork’s Reply to ACWA’s objections (24 May 2019) and Annexures 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12
- ACWA’s replication (7 June 2019)
Internal Appeal: Water Use Licence
CER, on behalf of groundWork, appealed in the Water Tribunal against the Water Use Licence granted to ACWA.
- groundWork’s Notice of Appeal (8 August 2018)
- groundWork’s Supplementary Appeal (18 February 2019) and Annexures A , B , C , D, E, F, G, H , I, J, K
- ACWA’s response to the Appeal (5 April 2019)
On 21 July 2020 the Water Tribunal upheld groundWork’s appeal to set aside the Water Use Licence, due to lack of adequate public participation. The Water Tribunal directed ACWA to re-advertise the application and conduct the public participation by 21 September 2020.
The Tribunal also confirmed that climate change is a relevant factor to be considered in the Water Use Licence application in terms of section 27 of the National Water Act. The decision of the Water Tribunal is available here.
Request to Minister to uplift the suspension of ACWA’s Water Use Licence and Minister’s Decision
- ACWA’s Application to the Minister of Water and Sanitation to uplift the suspension of the Water Use Licence (12 September 2018)
- groundWork’s objection to WUL suspension Upliftment (12 October 2018)
- ACWA’s further petition to the Minister (7 November 2018)
- Minister’s Decision provided to ACWA (10 April 2019)
- Minister’s Decision provided to groundWork (10 April 2019)
Combined Application to Review the Minister’s Decision to Uplift the Suspension of ACWA’s Water Use Licence and Application for an Interim Interdict
- Notice of Motion and Founding Affidavit of Robby Makwetlang Mokgalaka (8 October 2019)
- Annexures to Founding Affidavit (SP1 – SP46)
- Confirmatory Affidavit of Thomas Mnguni (6 October 2019)