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Endangered Wildlife Trust and others v Director-General of the Department of Water and Sanitation and another

22 May 2019

Water Tribunal 

Appeal no. WT 03/17/MP

22 May 2019

Members: T Murombo, with F Zondach and L Mbanjwa

This matter concerned an appeal against the decision of the Director-General of the Department of Water and Sanitation (DG) to grant a water use licence for the proposed Yzermyn coal mine in the Mabola Protected Environment to Atha-Africa Ventures (Pty) Ltd (Atha) in terms of the National Water Act, 1998 (NWA).

The appeal was dismissed and the water use licence was confirmed on the following conditions:

  • Atha shall provide to the DG,  in terms of clause 14.1 of the water use licence, proof of financial provision made in terms of legislation other than the NWA; and
  • The DG shall within 60 days of the commencement of this judgment and before the commencement of mining review the adequacy of the budgetary provision provided for in terms of paragraph 172.1 hereof and Exhibit 12 of the record; and if necessary, require Atha to provide further financial security in accordance with section 30 of the NWA.

Download the appeal decision

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.

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