ELA Newsletter 2021-13

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16 April 2021


Draft Gas Amendment Bill, 2020 – GN 332 in GG 44438 of 13 April 2021 – for comment and explanatory summary


Revenue Laws Second Amendment Act 61 of 2008 – Proc 14 in GG 44455 of 16 April 2021 – s. 35(1)(a) commences 1 June 2021



Disaster Management Act 57 of 2002 – GN 333 in GG 44447 of 14 April 2021 – Declaration of a national state of disaster published in GN 313 in GG 43096 of 15 March 2020 extended to 15 May 2021

National Railway Safety Regulator Act 16 of 2002 – GN 338 in GG 44455 of 16 April 2021 – Determination of Safety Permit Fees for the 2021 /22 financial year published with effect from 1 April 2021

Protection of Personal Information Act 4 of 2013 – Gen Notice 209 in GG 44459 of 16 April 2021 – Information Regulator –  Draft Code of Conduct from the Credit Bureau Association (CBA) that deals with how personal information will be processed in the credit sector – for comment published


Eastern Cape

Local Government: Municipal Systems Act 32 of 2000 and Spatial Planning and Land Use Management Act 16 of 2013 – Gen Notice 11 in PG 4537 of 12 April 2021 – Dr Beyers Naude Local Municipality – draft Spatial Development Framework – for comment

Nature and Environmental Conservation Ordinance 19 of 1974 and Problem Animal Control Ordinance 26 of 1957 – PN 2 in PG 4537 of 12 April 2021 – Determination of hunting season, daily bag limits and hunting by the use of prohibited hunting methods, 2021

Local Government: Municipal Systems Act (32/2000) – PN 47 in PG 4539 of 12 April 2021 – Senqu Local Municipality – Draft Budget, Draft revised IDP, Draft SDBIP, Budget Related Policies and Proposed Tariff Structure for the 2021/2022 financial year – for comment

KwaZulu Natal

KwaZulu-Natal Planning and Development Act 6 of 2008 – PN 23 in PG 2269 of 15 April 2021 – Consultation period on the draft consultation paper and norms and standards for spatial imperatives for public service infrastructure extended to 31 May 2021

Northern Cape

Local Government: Municipal Systems Act 32 of 2000 and Spatial Planning and Land Use Management Act 16 of 2013 – MN 9 in PG 2412 of 12 April 2021 – Frances Baard District Municipality – Draft Spatial Development Framework (SDF) – for comment


Spatial Planning and Land Use Management Act 16 of 2013 – Gen Notice 28 in PG 3153 of 9 April 2021 – Fetakgomo Tubatse Local Municipality – Adoption and approval of the Land Use Scheme, 2021

Local Government: Municipal Systems Act 32 of 2000 – Prem Notice 2 in PG 3154 of 13 April 2021 – Polokwane Local Municipality – Leeto La Polokwane By-Laws, 2018


Constitution of the Republic of South Africa, 1996 and Local Government: Municipal Systems Act 32 of 2000 – Gen Notice 22 in PG 3252 of 9 April 2021 – Dr JS Moroka Local Municipality – Public Health By-law, 2019

Western Cape

Spatial Planning and Land Use Management Act 16 of 2013 – LAN 21184 in PG 8415 of 16 April 2021 – Central Karoo District Municipality – Adoption of the Spatial Development Framework

North West

National Land Transport Act 5 of 2009 – Gen Notice 34 in PG 8201 of 12 April 2021 – North West Land Transport Regulations, 2021



G. Khan Cement Company Ltd. versus Government of Punjab through its Chief Secretary, Lahore, etc Case No C.P.1290-L/2019 (Against the Order of Lahore High Court, Lahore dated 31.01.2019, passed in W.P. No. 5898/2019) Supreme Court of Pakistan Decided 11 February 2021

“The case upholds a Notification from the Punjab Government disallowing new or expanded cement plants in certain “negative areas.” The opinion stresses the importance of several well established and emerging principles of international environmental law, including in dubio pro natura and the legal personhood of nature, water justice and climate justice, intergenerational equity, environmental rule of law, and climate democracy. In the words of Professor Nicholas Robinson (Pace University), the opinion makes the following contributions: [E Daly]

  1. Highlighting that no EIA was done is most important (especially since the Punjab government reached out to experts, but not in the systematic way that Punjab’s EIA law requires, with public participation, etc.).
  2. Invoking in dubio pro nature and in dubio pro aqua appears to be a leading precedent now for South Asia, and internationally.
  3. Citing the Water Justice declaration of Brasilia.
  4. The well-presented application of inter-generational justice is extraordinary and welcome. A powerful norm is given effect in a practical setting.
  5. This ruling advances environmental jurisprudence in Pakistan for sure, but also globally for the environmental rule of law. The rule of law and the environmental rule of law are advanced. The Court (and Punjab’s government) shows that decisive action can be taken on mitigating climate impacts.”



City of Cape Town “2019 Inland Water Quality Report” (February 2021) [Legalbrief Environmental 13 April 2021]


2021 12(1) Journal of Human Rights & the Environment now available – focusing on communities and mining

Holt Segall C “Just Transitions for Oil and Gas Communities” (13 April 2021 Edinburgh School of Law Research Paper No. 2020/09) http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3825778

Water Tribes Initiative’s (WTI) The Status of Tribal Water Rights in the Colorado River Basin (Policy Brief 9 April 2021)

Vásquez-Fernández A et al “From ‘mutual respect’ to ‘intercultural respect’: collaborating with Asheninka and Yine Peoples in the Peruvian Amazon” 2021 The Journal of Legal Pluralism and Unofficial Law DOI: 10.1080/07329113.2021.1889791

Koonan Sujith “Manual scavenging in India: state apathy, non-implementation of laws and resistance by the community” 2021 Indian Law Review DOI: 10.1080/24730580.2021.1905340

Blogs, Discussions, Websites, Videos, ETC

South Africa

Biodiversity, protected areas, culture

Daily Maverick: Carnie T “State and forestry industry lock horns over water laws in wake of pulp sector’s plantation plans” 5 April 2021

Royal Society: Cowling RM “Behaviours for conserving biodiversity” April 2021 [Legalbrief Environmental 13 April 2021]

Daily Maverick: Bain K “Underwater otherworld: A dive into the Cape’s kelp forests” 17 April 2021

Daily Maverick: Purchase F “Guidelines, not residents’ wishes, are followed when managing baboons in Cape Town’s urban areas” 16 April 2021

Daily Maverick: Blyth T “The death of Philemon: My response as a Councillor Appointed Representative for Baboons” 16 April 2021

The Conversation: Bradfield D “Southern African hunters may have used symbolism in choosing bones to craft arrows” 15 April 2021

Climate change and energy

Daily Maverick: Duvenage W “The government’s fuel-related levies and taxes are unsustainable” 14 April 2021

Daily Maverick: Patel E “Powering our way out of the carbon economy and into a green hydrogen future” 15 April 2021

Local government

Daily Maverick: Simelane BC “Living conditions in fire-ravaged Joburg CBD informal settlement ‘worse than hell’” 16 April 2021


The Conversation: Meyer Y “Law protecting interests of South African communities in mining deals falls short” 13 April 2021

Daily Maverick: Choen T “Seriti coal deal hangs in the balance” 15 April 2021

Water, waste, oceans and chemicals

allAfrica: “South Africa: Minister Lindiwe Sisulu Welcomes Progress Towards Rooiwal Wastewater Treatment Works Upgrade” 15 April 2021

allAfrica: “South Africa: SA Has ‘Sufficient Water in Storage’” 15 April 2021



Thomas Reuters Foundation: Njagi K “Armed with phones and seeds, jobless Kenyans tackle illegal logging” 15 April 2021

allAfrica: Kibui R “Kenya: Farmers Using Community Seed Banks to Fight Climate Change” 13 April 2021

Bizcommunity: “’Sacred forests’ in West Africa capture carbon and keep soil healthy” 9 April 2021

allAfrica: Mtawali W “Malawi Achieves 91 Percent Conviction of Wildlife Crimes – Beefs Up ‘Docorated’ Fight Against Vice” 16 April 2021

allAfrica: Winter C “Namibia: Why Is It Important to Save the Elephant?” 16 April 2021

allAfrica: Mulisa M “Tanzania: Over 24 Million Trees Planted in Kagera” 16 April 2021

allAfrica: Tokpah WN “Liberia: FDA, Fauna & Flora International End Two National Workshops On Pygmy Hippopotamus Conservation and Validation of Collaborative Management Plan for Sapo National Park” 16 April 2021

allAfrica: “Ghana: We Can’t Live Without Trees” 14 April 2021

allAfrica: “North Africa: WWF North Africa Launches People and Cork Project” 15 April 2021

allAfrica: “Ethiopia: The Need to Fight Forest Degradation in Ethiopia” 14 April 2021

allAfrica: “Central Africa: Deutsche Bank Must End Its Sustainability Farce in Central Africa” 15 April 2021

Climate Change and Energy

Lexology: “At a glance: natural gas pipeline transportation and storage in Nigeria” 16 February 2021

Thomas Reuters Foundation: Goldsmit B and Accheri C “Flight to the future: One land’s quest to defuse a climate ‘timebomb’” [Somaliland]

Lexology: “Spotlight: climate change law, regulation and policy in Kenya” 4 March 2021

Climate Home News: “Total signs deal to build East African oil pipeline, despite lack of finance” 12 April 2021

allAfrica: “Mozambique: Nyusi Challenges Commonwealth to Fund Climate Change” 16 April 2021

The Guardian: Okiror S “‘We cannot drink oil’: campaigners condemn east African pipeline project” 14 April 2021

The Independent: Sankaran V “How global warming will hit the coffee market, according to scientists” 16 April 2021

The Conversation: Yaw Tchie AE “How climate insecurity could trigger more conflict in Somalia” 12 April 2021

Local government

Centre for Investigative Journalism: “Chinese Firms In Tussle For Lesotho’s Lucrative Mpilo Upgrade Tender” [Lesotho] 13 April 2021

allAfrica: Nembaya H “Namibia: Outapi serves residents with low-1uality water” 16 April 2021


allAfrica: Turuvinga A “Zimbabwe: Rushwaya to Challenge Further Remand” 9 April 2021 [IBA Legalbrief 12 April 2021]

BBC: Athuhaire E “Tanzania and Uganda sign $3.5bn oil deal” 12 April 2021

Lexology White & Case LLP: Campbell R, Omietański A, Burnell M and Felthun G “African mining 4.0: An innovative sunrise for African miners” 5 April 2021

Extractives Baraza: Ngugi B “Kenya in New Search for Oil off Lamu Coast” 13 April 2021

Extractives Baraza: Ojambo F and Burkhardt P “Total’s Latest African Deal Will Position Uganda among Major Oil Exporters” 13 April 2021

Extractives Baraza: “Angola’s Diamond Sector on a Strong Footing” 13 April 2021

Bizcommunity: Kumah RK “Ghana needs to rethink its small scale mining strategy. Here’s how” 16 April 2021

Bizcommunity: Radley B and Geenen S “How large miners and states stifle local capital and innovation in DR Congo” 13 April 2021

allAfrica: Simpkins G “Sierra Leone Mining Dispute Highlights Pitfalls for U.S. Firms” 16 April 2021

Water, sanitation, oceans, and chemicals

Centre for Investigative Journalism: Chinoko C “Govt awarded contracts to Mulli linked ‘briefcase’ firms” [Malawi] 10 April 2021

allAfrica: Sterl S “East Africa: Solar and Wind Power Could Break the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam Deadlock” 16 April 2021

allAfrica: “Djibouti: Sisi, Djibouti President Stress Need to Settle Ethiopian Dam Crisis” 16 April 2021


allAfrica: Du Plessis C “Weak African customs regimes will ‘hinder’ implementing continental free trade agreement” 9 April 2021 [IBA Legalbrief 9 April 2021]

Centre for Investigative Journalism: “Rushed Airport Contract Scrapped” [Lesotho] 15 April 2021

Bizcommunity: “Coca-Cola women empowerment programme benefits millions in Africa” 15 April 2021

Bizcommunity: “Rotary Africa event to unpack sustainable development of fashion and textiles” 14 April 2021

Bizcommunity: Rhodes J and Patel K “Thomson Reuters and Juta announce strategic partnership to connect African lawyers to the world” 13 April 2021


Biodiversity, protected areas, and culture

Lexology: “The ILA Guidelines for the Sustainable Management of Natural Resources: a roadmap for investment regulation?” 13 April 2021

IISD: Bansard J and Schoder M “The Sustainable Use of Natural Resources: The Governance Challenge” 15 April 2021

Lexology: “Fishing in the North east – overcoming the hurdles on the horizon” [UK] 9 April 2021

Nature:  Subbaraman N “First monkey–human embryos reignite debate over hybrid animals” 15 April 2021

Thomas Reuters Foundation: Subedi A “Nepal chokes on smoke and ash as drought-worsened wildfires rage” 13 April 2021

Thomas Reuters Foundation: Pearshouse R “Opinion: Cambodia’s Prey Lang: how not to protect a vital forest” 13 April 2021

Lexology: “New ruling expands environmental organisations’ rights in nature conservation procedures” [EU and Austria] 12 April 2021

The Guardian: “‘Forests are not renewable’: the felling of Sweden’s ancient trees” 16 April 2021

Science: Goldberg J “Alaska’s forest fires are shifting the region’s carbon balance—sometimes for the better” 15 April 2021

Climate change and energy

COP26 Lecture 1: Daniel BodanskyRoad to Paris and Glasgow” 20 February 2021 

COP26 Lecture 2: David Freestone on “Financial and Funding Mechanisms under the Climate Regime” 9 March 2021

Cambridge Climate Lecture Series: Marie-Claire Cordonier Segger “COP26 Climate Justice & Law” 20 February 2020-

Nature: Dibley A, Wetzer T and Hepburn C “National COVID debts: climate change imperils countries’ ability to repay – Analysis reveals three ways to boost green investment and achieve a resilient recovery from the coronavirus pandemic” 6 April 2021

Lexology: “The Battle for Biofuel Exemptions Heads to the Supreme Court” [USA] 8 April 2021

Lexology: “Second Circuit Holds Climate Change Litigation Belongs in Federal Court” [USA] 8 April 2021

IISD ENB: High-Level Dialogue on Energy Technical Working Groups UN General Assembly | 22 February– 20 April 2021 | Online

Lexology: “Climate Action Bill 2021” 13 April 2021

Lexology: “EPA reports that Ireland’s power generation and industrial emission dropped by 6.4% in 2020” 14 April 2021

Lexology: “Spotlight: climate change law, regulation and policy in Netherlands” 4 March 2021

Lexology: “Energy Working Groups Release Draft Reports” 12 April 2021

Lexology: “Forum Seeks to Hold Decision Makers Accountable to Future Generations” 12 April 2021

Lexology: “Making Green Hydrogen a Global Trade Commodity for Enhanced Climate Ambition” 12 April 2021

Lexology: “EU presidency holder Portugal floats compromise to try to unblock negotiations on Climate Law” 14 April 2021

Climate Home News: “Climate watchers pay tribute to Nicaraguan envoy Paul Oquist, who died on Monday” 14 April 2021

Carbon Pulse: Verles M “Comment: Climate action claims are the new frontier for robust carbon accounting” 16 April 2021

Inside Climate News: Gustin G “Politicians Are Considering Paying Farmers to Store Carbon. But Some Environmental and Agriculture Groups Say It’s Greenwashing” [USA] 16 April 2021

Thomas Reuters Foundation: Chandran R “Land-starved Singapore gets creative with solar in clean energy push” 16 April 2021

Thomas Reuters Foundation: Rowling M “Mid-year U.N. talks to go ahead virtually in ‘crucial year’ for climate action” 16 April 2021

Thomas Reuters Foundation: “Insight-Clean crude? Oil firms use offsets to claim green barrels” 16 April 2021

Lexology: “State Climate Legislation Takes Aim at Natural Gas Industry” 9 April 2021

Bizcommunity: “Heineken sets goal to be carbon neutral in production by 2030” 15 April 2021

The Independent: Trew B “The poisoned clouds that are suffocating the people of Iraq” 16 April 2021

Science: Voosen P “California to hunt greenhouse gas leaks and superemitters with monitoring satellites” 15 April 2021

Environmental enforcement

Lexology: “In review: environmental protection regulations in Canada” 4 March 2021

Lexology: “Seventh Circuit Interprets “Claim” to Rule that Buyer Must Indemnify Seller for Superfund Liability” 14 April 2021

Lexology: “Planning and Environment Quarterly Case Review – April 2021” [Australia] 14 April 2021

Lexology: “Administrator Regan Reaffirms Environmental Justice as a Top Priority of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency” 13 April 2021

Lexology: “The Clean Air Agreement and industry: Dutch government aims to tighten emission requirements” 14 April 2021

Lexology: “In review: environmental protection regulations in Australia” 4 March 2021

Chemistry World: Krämer K “How Covid gave the world a lesson in tackling air pollution” 15 April 2021

Thomas Reuters Foundation: Blomberg M “Why Cambodia’s environmentalists fear new internet firewall” 6 April 2021

Lexology: “A Timely Consultation on Legislation Regulating Access to Information on the Environment” [EU] 12 April 2021

Local government

Lexology: “Getting up to standard: shifting the built environment towards net zero” [UK] 15 April 2021

Nature: Howe NP and Bundell S “The sanitation crisis making rural America ill” 14 April 2021

Thomas Reuters Foundation: Teixeira F “Brazil’s favelas struggle to count their dead as coronavirus rages” 12 April 2021

Thomas Reuters Foundation:  Nagaraj A “Trust and coast eroded, Indian fishing hamlet boycotts polls” 7 April 2021

Thomas Reuters Foundation: Chandran R “Pakistan slum dwellers map flood risks to stop evictions” 12 April 2021

Thomas Reuters Foundation: Biron CL “Neighborhoods united: Highway removal gains steam in U.S. cities” 12 April 2021

Thomas Reuters Foundation: “German constitutional court strikes down Berlin rent cap” 15 April 2021

Lexology: “Environmental Development and Real Estate Issues in Texas Solar Projects Webinar Recording” 24 March 2021

The Guardian: Smee B “Townsville’s ‘road to Paris’ moment: the slow greening of an Adani stronghold” [Australia] 16 April 2021

The Independent: Bennett A “How Valencia became the first city in the world to verify its tourism carbon emissions” 16 April 2021


Extractives Baraza: Paraskowa D “Big Oil’s Reserves Have Dropped by 25% Since 2015” 13 April 2021

Water, oceans, waste, and chemicals

Lexology: “Pollutants, Storm Water, the Clean Water Act and Wildebeests” [USA] 14 April 2021

Lexology: “MI and SI Proposed Carbon Tax: Contractual Considerations” 23 March 2021

IISD: Mead L “Small Islands, Large Oceans: Voices on the Frontlines of Climate Change” 29 March 2021

IISD SDG Knowledge Hub: “Working Group on Chemical Issues of Concern Publishes Proposals for Beyond 2020” 14 April 2021

IISD SDG Knowledge Hub: “Experts Propose Targets, Process to Establish Indicators for Beyond 2020 Chemicals Framework” 14 April 2021

IISD SDG Knowledge Hub: “Co-Facilitators Finalize Structure for HLPF Ministerial Declaration” 14 April 2021

Lexology: “WTO Informal Dialogue Discusses Concept Note, Roadmap on Plastics and Trade” 12 April 2021

Lexology: “Working Group on Chemical Issues of Concern Publishes Proposals for Beyond 2020” 14 April 2021

Lexology: “Experts Propose Targets, Process to Establish Indicators for Beyond 2020 Chemicals Framework” 14 April 2021

Lexology: “Circular Economy Toolbox for Europe Points to Guidance, Regulations” 12 April 2021

Wired: “Plastic Is Falling from the Sky. But Where’s it Coming from?” 13 April 2021

Lexology: “Another post-Maui Clean Water Act Case Filed in the Ninth Circuit” 12 April 2021

Lexology: “New measures to eliminate plastic waste” [UK] 7 April 2021

Lexology: “range of financial investments. This has been driven… When it comes to PFAS, can we handle the truth?” 9 April 2021

CNBC “United Airlines partners with global firms to finance the use of fuel derived from trash” 13 April 2021

The Independent: Place N “This is why recycling receipts can actually be worse for the planet” 16 April 2021


Climate Education: “Why do we need climate education? Featuring Mitzi Jonelle Tan” 6 April 2021
Join World’s Largest Lesson, children and climate activists from around the world in their ask to include learning about climate change in school curriculums. Watch as climate activist Mitzi Jonelle Tan explains why climate education is so important and what it means to her.

Lexology: “Dey-Kaplan Report Aims to Update Canadian Corporate Governance Standards” [Canada] 14 April 2021

IISD SDG Knowledge Hub: “Embracing Circularity is Not an Option but an Urgent Imperative” 14 April 2021

IISD SDG Knowledge Hub: “Experts Recommend Steps for SDG Implementation in the US” 14 April 2021

Lexology: “Human Rights Due Diligence in Supply Chain Contracts: A Shared Responsibility of Buyer and Supplier?” [USA] 12 April 2021

Lexology: “China and EU to Collaborate on Green Investment Standards” 12 April 2021

Lexology: “Five Things You Didn’t Know about Impact Investing” [Israel] 10 April 2021

Lexology: “ESAs consult on taxonomy-related sustainability disclosures for environmental products” 9 April 2021

Bizcommunity: “Abdulai A-R et al “Blockchain could play an important role in future agriculture and food security” 16 April 2021

Conferences, Workshops, Study Opportunities


ELA Screening Club Event: The Adonisi judgment and issues of spatial apartheid surrounding the judgment
Date: 25 May 2021
More information 

IMBEWU’s Environmental Law Update Workshop
Online course: To book, email or call us on 011 214 0660
For more information about the course consult the website.

CBSS Training Courses in Water Governance scheduled for 2021

  • 17 – 19 August 2021, in Pretoria
    • Refresher (for those who attended previous courses): 19 August 2021
    • Early Bird discount applicable until 6 July 2021
    • Registration closes 20 July 2021
    • Only TWO (2) seats still available
  • 7 – 9 September 2021, near Stellenbosch
    • Refresher (for those who attended previous courses): 9 September 2021
    • Early bird payment before 20 July 2021
    • Registration closes 3 August 2021
    • Nine (9) seats still available
  • Mpumalanga, KZN and Eastern Cape: date and venue to be confirmed, depending on interest

You can register here

NWU: Unit for Continuing Education Short Courses

  • CEM-05.1.1 Environmental Impact Assessment: 10 – 14 May 2021
  • CEM-02.1.1 Environmental law: 24 – 28 May 2021
  • CEM-05.3.1 Environmental Risk Assessment: 7 – 11 June 2021
  • CEM-03.1.1 Environmental Management Systems: 5 – 9 July 2021

Contact Rosy Moloto: 018 299 2725 / Nonzuzu Seleka: 018 299 1470 for more information

South African Institute for Advanced Constitutional, Public, Human Rights and International Law (SAIFAC):  10-part series on Climate Change Leadership: Bringing Science, People and Policy Together

  • 6 May 2021: Topic 2: The discomfort of uncertainty and the certain uncertainty of scientific research
  • 27 May 2021: Topic 3: How do people and societies respond (or not) to climate change? Navigating the complexities of human behaviour.
  • 17 June 2021: Topic 4: Looking back, looking forward – can law change the climate change trajectory?
  • 29 July 2021: Topic 5: Who produces CO2 and why? What are the options and technologies for reducing greenhouse gas emissions?
  • 19 August 2021: Topic 6: Increasing pressure, increasing implications for businesses?
  • 2 September 2021: Topic 8: Jobs or the environment? How can climate change responses address the interests of labour?
  • 30 September 2021: Topic 9: Preparing for COP 26 – What does South Africa want from the COP negotiations?
  • 14 October 2021: Topic 10: Where to from here? The role of the next generation and their views on a safe and human world for all

More information available on the SAIFAC Facebook page https://www.facebook.com/SAIFAConline

Enterprises @ University of Pretoria Online Short Course in Environmental Law
Date: 21 June to 2 July 2021 led by Dr Melanie Murcott
More information

Africa Energy Indaba as a physical event in Cape Town in 2022
Date: 1-2 March 2022
Place: CTICC
Enquiries:  /  Learn more: africaenergyindaba.com


The Road to COP 26/CMA 3 Preparatory Lecture Series
Date: 28 May 2021, (EST) / 10:00 (London) / 18:00 (SGT): The Paris Agreement Rule Book: Adding a Glasgow Chapter to the Katowice Package by Petra Minnerop, Associate Professor of International Law, Durham University, Durham Law School
Date: 18 June 2021, 10:00 (London) / 18:00 (Beijing): Advancing Technology Development and Transfer under the Paris Agreement by Stephen Minas, Associate Professor, Peking University School of Transnational Law and Vice-Chair of the UNFCCC Technology Executive Committee
Date: 2 July 2021, 12:00 (London) / 17:00 (Dhaka): The perspective of the Least Developed Countries on Loss and Damage from climate change by Dr Saleemul Huq, Director of the International Centre for Climate Change and Development (ICCCAD) and Professor at the Independent University Bangladesh (IUB)
Date: 30 July 2021 10:00 (London) / 18:00 (SGT) Global Goal for Adaptation for Raising Ambition under the Paris Agreement by Selam Kidane AbebeLegal Advisor for the African Group of Negotiators under the UNFCCC
Date: 26 August 2021, 10:00 (London) / 18:00 (SGT) Streamlining the Ocean into COP 26 and beyond by Nilufer Oral, Director, CIL-NUS and Member of the International Law Commission
Date: 24 September 2021, 10:00 (London) / 18:00 (SGT) Equity and Fairness in International Climate Change Law by Lavanya Rajamani, Professor of International Environmental Law, Faculty of Law, University of Oxford
Date: 8 October 2021, 10:00 (London) / 18:00 (SGT) The Compensation Question: Loss and Damages by Linda Siegele, Legal Advisor to AOSIS Member States
More information

Learning from Vital Practitioners: Building Antiracist and Anticolonial Ocean and Coastal Science and Policy
Date: 29 April  2021
Time: 03:00PM to 04:30 PM, Eastern Time (US and Canada)
Register in advance for this meeting.





Steyn D “Robben Island is showing signs of decay” GroundUp 12 April 2021

Litigation: NSPCA granted leave to appeal costs order
“The National Council of SPCAs has been granted leave to appeal a court order requiring it to pay the hefty legal costs of a high court application it brought last year to seize a Kuwaiti livestock exporter’s ship as security for money it owed the NSPCA. A Daily Dispatch report notes the NSPCA last year succeeded in obtaining an interim interdict against Al Mawashi and its parent company Livestock, Transport and Trading Company in terms of which it could attach their ship, the Al Messila, in the East London harbour as security against about R850 000 the two companies owed it in legal costs. Shortly afterwards, the court order attaching the ship was discharged by agreement after Al Mawashi provided alternative security for costs. But Judge Nceba Dukada later ruled that the NSPCA’s application was bad in law. He said the NSPCA appeared to rely on admiralty law to have the ship arrested. He found there was no proper maritime claim before the court as required by the Admiralty Jurisdiction Regulations Act and it should not therefore have relied on admiralty law. Dukada ordered the NSPCA to foot the hefty legal bill of the application, including the cost of counsel. But Judge Judith Roberson has now granted the NSPCA leave to appeal the cost order. She ruled there was a reasonable prospect that another court would find that the application had been brought as an anti-dissipation interdict rather than one brought in terms of maritime law. Roberson referred the appeal to be heard by a full Bench of the Eastern Cape High Court (Makhanda).” Full Daily Dispatch report (subscription needed) Legalbrief 14 April 2021

Conservation: Cape Town to spend R62m to clear alien invasive plants
“Cape Town City Council has approved a memorandum of agreement between the City and the US-based global environmental non-profit, The Nature Conservancy (TNC), which will see the City spending R62m to clear alien invasive plants. A Cape Argus report notes that the City’s money will be used over three years to remove alien invasive plants from mountainous catchment areas that feed important water-supply dams for Cape Town. The City’s contribution will be administered by TNC, who will match the City’s R62m rand-for-rand through contributions raised in the private sector and from philanthropists.” Full Cape Argus report (subscription needed) Legalbrief Environmental 13 April 2021

Heritage: Lobby group flags demolition of Bantry Bay buildings
“The Simon van der Stel Heritage Foundation, a conservation lobby group, is up in arms over the alarming rate at which Heritage Western Cape (HWC) has allowed the demolition of Bantry Bay structures considered to be of heritage importance. A Cape Argus report notes that HWC issued demolition permits for four 20th century buildings situated on Saunders Road and on Bantry Road. The foundation submitted objections against the demolition of these buildings, which it said were important heritage resources that still contributed positively to the enjoyment of this old neighbourhood. Foundation chairperson Ian Pretorius said Bantry Bay has suffered numerous losses because of demolitions over the past 20 years. ‘These early 20th century buildings represent the very early architectural and urban-making fabric of old Bantry Bay. If we wipe out these tangible reminders of a neighbourhood’s past and the achievements of our forebears, we will end up with a sterile, monotonous neighbourhood that looks like any other modern neighbourhood in the world,’ he said. HWC acting CEO Colette Scheermeyer said the structures were considered to have insufficient heritage significance to warrant retention and were not within a declared or proposed Heritage Protection Overlay. ‘As a heritage authority, if there is no heritage context to formally protect the structure, nor does the structure possess heritage value, HWC has no valid reason for not issuing a permit.’” Full Cape Argus report (subscription needed) Legalbrief Environmental 13 April 2021

Climate change and energy

Steyn L “Sasol moves into low-carbon green hydrogen” BusinessLive 14 April 2021

Steyn L “Sasol and Air Liquide seek bidders for R13bn green power project” BusinessLive 14 April 2021

“Electricity, water price hikes pose risk to inflation outlook – central bank” Engineering News 15 April 2021

Litigation: Eskom wins opening skirmish in Econ Oil dispute
“Eskom won some relief in its battle to set aside a R14bn contract with fuel oil suppliers including Econ Oil yesterday when the Gauteng High Court (Johannesburg) suspended an earlier arbitration award that had been made in Econ’s favour. A Business Day report says the contract to supply fuel oil to Eskom’s power stations was awarded in October 2019 to Econ Oil, Sasol and FFS. Eskom CEO André de Ruyter, who joined the company in January 2020, has sought to cancel the contract, citing suspicion of overpricing, collusion between the suppliers and possible fraud and corruption. But with the award already made, in December 2020, Econ Oil won an arbitration process to force Eskom to continue to make payments of R21m a month. Eskom, which is asking the court to set aside the contract in its entirety, won Part A of the application yesterday, which was to suspend the arbitration award. Part B of the application will deal with the merits of the case and will be heard in June. The fallout over the Econ Oil transaction has been immense, notes the Business Day report. It was responsible for the resignation of non-executive director Sifiso Dabengwa in July 2020 and is one of the disputes between De Ruyter and chief procurement officer Solly Tshitangano, who has been suspended. A forensic report by Bowmans also uncovered that a former senior Eskom official, who has since resigned, solicited donations to the Lilliesleaf branch of the ANC. Dabengwa had accused De Ruyter of misleading the board in matters related to the fuel oil tender. An independent inquiry by Wim Trengove SC found that De Ruyter had not misled the board and that Dabengwa had been reckless in making the accusations. Dabengwa resigned thereafter.” Full Business Day report (subscription needed) Legalbrief 16 April 2021

Legislation: Gas Amendment Bill heads to Parliament
“An explanatory summary of the long-promised Gas Amendment Bill was gazetted yesterday in anticipation of its tabling in Parliament. With a view to providing for and promoting the ‘orderly’ socio-economically and environmentally sustainable development of SA’s gas industry, the proposed new piece of legislation seeks to ‘facilitate’ co-operation between the private and public sectors on matters of investment in gas infrastructure among other things; ‘enhance’ the existing regulatory framework; ‘promote’ broad-based black economic empowerment; improve compliance; and strengthen enforcement. According to a media statement on the 24 February Cabinet meeting at which the Bill was approved, once operationalised it will also enable the gas industry’s ‘alignment’ with new ‘natural and unconventional’ gas transportation technologies.” Read full report in Legalbrief Policy Watch 14 April 2021

Local government

Naidoo S “Astral secures high court order against government in service delivery battle” Moneyweb 14 April 2021

McCain N “City of Cape Town claims nearly R1.4m from Gatvol Capetonian group, EFF for damages during protests” News24 12 April 2021

Dyongman L “Overflowing sewage and no refuse collection in Makhanda” GroundUp 16 April 2021

Evans J “Hillbrow residents move nearly 500 tons of trash from their derelict building” GroundUp 16 April 2021

Majola N ““We cannot escape the smell”: Women have to clear away sewage before they can do their laundry” GroundUp 15 April 2021

Dyongman L “Makhanda shack dwellers protest for electrification – Eskom pole set alight” GroundUp 13 April 2021

Burger S “City Power to clear electricity lines servitudes of encroaching objects” Engineering News 16 April 2021

“SA concerned by incident at Iran’s Natanz nuclear facility” SANews 16 April 2021

“Botshabelo Industrial Park attracts over R500m in investments” SANews 16 April 2021

General: Msunduzi mulls ‘off-loading’ forestry unit
“The Msunduzi Municipality has been urged to ‘off-load’ its forestry because the timber is being looted and council is deriving no benefit. According to a report in The Mercury, the municipality’s administrator, Scelo Duma, briefed councillors on the state of forestry recently. He said that it was a concern as the council was losing millions of rand in revenue that could boost its coffers because of the widespread theft of timber. At several council meetings, opposition party councillors have told how they had witnessed or received reports of municipal timber being hauled off by thieves in broad daylight. In the previous financial year, the municipality lost R15m in potential revenue. At least one opposition party has called for the Special Investigating Unit to look into the matter, saying some of the shenanigans were as a result of maladministration, which could be deliberate to further criminal ends. DA councillor Ross Strachan said they were not in support of the forestry being off-loaded as it had the potential to generate revenue for the municipality. He said they would prefer for the city to appoint a competent service provider to manage forestry.” Full report in The Mercury (subscription needed) Legalbrief Environmental 13 April 2021


Bulbulia T “Botswana Diamonds to undertake second stage drilling campaign at Thorny River” Mining Weekly 15 April 2021

“Alexkor urged to advance Alexander Bay development” SANews 15 April 2021

Mining: Yzermyn interdicted until all appeals finalised
“A long battle over a proposed coal mine in an ecologically important area has culminated in an interdict halting the mine’s development until all pending reviews and appeals have been finalised. A BusinessLIVE report notes that environmental justice groups have welcomed the ruling, but the mine developers, who have already sunk $56m into the project, warn it could have far-reaching consequences for mining and other investments in SA. The judgment, recently handed down by the High Court in Pretoria, found in favour of the applicants – a coalition of civil society organisations opposed to the Yzermyn underground coal mine near Wakkerstroom, Mpumalanga. The ruling halted its development until final determinations have been made on nine reviews and appeals regarding the mine’s permits. The ruling has piqued the interest of the Minerals Council SA, although the mining industry body would only say it is studying the judgment and consulting with members to understand its implications. ‘Which foreign company or even SA company would want to do business in SA when you know anybody can stop anyone from doing it?’ asked Praveer Tripathi, senior vice president of Uthaka Energy, a subsidiary of the Atha Group in India and the developer of Yzermyn. James Cross, Director of environmental health & safety at law firm Andersen in SA, said the Yzermyn matter bore testament to the enhanced ability of opponents to coal mining ventures to successfully exploit regulatory shortcomings against the backdrop of sensitive and controversial environmental settings.” Full BusinessLIVE report (subscription needed) Legalbrief Environmental 13 April 2021

Water, waste, oceans and chemicals

Mopeli Y “No water in Qwaqwa villages since 2018” GroundUp 15 April 2021

“President Cyril Ramaphosa notes progress made in enhancing the efficiency and competitiveness of Durban Port” SA Government website 15 April 2021

Liedtke S “Circular economy a key component of South Africa’s post-Covid-19 recovery, says Creecy” Engineering News 16 April 2021


Van Zyl A “Judge President’s gripe with lawyers leads to High Court impasse” GroundUp 15 April 2021


Biodiversity, protected areas, animal rights, and culture

Spring J “Brazil demand for U.S. to pay upfront stalls deal to save Amazon forest” Reuters 15 April 2021

“EU must impose mandatory checks to halt imported deforestation –report” Carbon Pulse 13 April 2021

Gujral Z “California governor signs bill to increase wildfire funding” The Jurist 14 April 2021

“Philippines seizes illegally harvested giant clam shells worth $25m” The Guardian 17 April 2021

Weston P “M&S faces backlash over plan to release 30m honeybees” The Guardian 16 April 2021

Bergen S “Spain’s Endesa power firm sued over electrocution of birds” The Guardian 16 April 2021

McKenna C “How Canada is trying to protect its last three spotted owls” The Guardian 16 April 2021

Carrington D “Just 3% of world’s ecosystems remain intact, study suggests” The Guardian 15 April 2021

Cockburn H “Climate crisis pushing polar bears to mate with grizzlies, producing hybrid ‘pizzly’ bears” The Independent15 April 2021

Chee F “Dutch lose court fight against EU electric pulse fishing ban” BBC 15 April 2021

Climate change and energy

Rodd I “Torres Strait 8: Australian Islanders in landmark climate fight” BBC 15 April 2021

“Enhanced US Paris target of 50% emissions cut feasible but ambitious –researchers” Carbon Pulse 15 April 2021

Kilvert N “Bold challenge to decarbonise Australia in 15 years laid down by Climate Council” ABC News 15 April 2021

Reichstein M, Riede F and Frank D “More floods, fires and cyclones — plan for domino effects on sustainability goals – Without new models, better metrics and more investment, cascades of extreme events could derail the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals” Nature 13 April 2021

“Colombia proposes gradual incorporation of coal into national carbon tax” Carbon Pulse 16 April 2021

“China environment ministry pitches carbon test for new projects” Carbon Pulse 16 April 2021

“J-Power ditches coal plans, but long way to go for Japan on decarbonisation” Carbon Pulse 16 April 2021

“Diplomat: Russia ready to boost climate ties with EU, but it won’t ‘knock on locked doors’” TASS 16 April 2021

Carrington D “Whitest-ever paint could help cool heating Earth, study shows” The Guardian 15 April 2021

Gupte G “France lawmakers approve short-haul flight ban” The Jurist 12 April 2021

“Washington senators hold firm on transportation package link, legislative reauthorisation for LCFS bill” Carbon Pulse 13 April 2021

“Carbon tax can put dent in Asia-Pacific emissions, IMF says” Carbon Pulse 13 April 2021

Harrabin R “World’s wealthiest ‘at heart of climate problem’” BBC 13 April 2021

“Volkswagen loses A$125 million fine appeal for emissions breach in Australia: regulator” TimesLive 9 April 2021 [Legalbrief Environmental 13 April 2021]

Porter F “New Zealand introduces legislation to require financial sector disclosures of climate change impact” The Jurist 13 April 2021

Stephenson SK “Biden administration defers to courts on Dakota Access Pipeline shutdown” The Jurist 12 April 2021

Hern A “Facebook says it has reached net zero emissions” The Guardian 16 April 2021

Brown P “Rise of atmospheric carbon dioxide continues unabated” The Guardian 17 April 2021

McCurry J “Japanese regulator bans restart at nuclear plant over safety breaches” The Guardian 14 April 2021

Hunt E “New Zealand emissions rise as government vows urgent action” The Guardian 13 April 2021

Mathers M “Wind energy production costs could be halved by 2050, survey suggests” The Independent 16 April 2021

O’Malley N “European-style carbon taxes destined to spread, says former trade chief” Sydney Morning Herald 17 April 2021

Amos J “Carbon Mapper satellite network to find super-emitters” BBC 16 April 2021

“U.S. Interior Dept revokes Trump policies, puts climate at center of decisions” Reuters 16 April 2021

Environmental enforcement

“Environmental justice, green groups aim for higher TCI prices and more equity principles in final Model Rule” Carbon Pulse 13 April 2021

Oroschakoff K and Guillot L “The global campaign to make environmental destruction an international crime” Politico 8 April 2021

Cox L “‘Enormous sum of money’: $40m windfall from NSW environmental offsets sparks calls for inquiry” The Guardian 15 April 2021

Local government

Meza E “Berlin continues to lead German cities with most e-car charging stations” Clean Energy Wire 9 April 2021


Kurmelovs R “The race for rare earth minerals: can Australia fuel the electric vehicle revolution?” The Guardian 16 April 2021

Hannam P “‘Hallowed ground’: Outcry over plan to remove homestead for coal mine” Sydney Morning Herald 18 April 2021

Hiller J, Volcovici V and Hiller J “Biden admin discusses tribes’ broader oversight in oil-rich Oklahoma” Reuters 14 April 2021

Water, waste, oceans and chemicals

Stephens C “Alaska files lawsuit against chemical compound manufacturers” The Jurist 12 April 2021

Watts J “Pandemic made 2020 ‘the year of the quiet ocean’, say scientists” The Guardian 17 April 2021

Stroh L “Can recycled glass help restore Louisiana’s eroding coastline?” The Guardian 16 April 202

Sommerlad E “Climate crisis: Australian islanders say homes being ‘eaten away’ by rising sea levels” The Independent 16 April 2021

McCarthy D “Bottom trawling must be banned immediately – it’s destroying our oceans” The Independent 16 April 2021

Liedtke S “Global survey seeks to understand how circular economy is perceived” Engineering News 15 April 2021

“Fukushima: Japan approves releasing wastewater into ocean” BBC 13 April 2021


Jones R “Green investment bond offers 9% return – but there is a risk” The Guardian 17 April 2021

Vacancies, Bursaries, Funding, Opportunities, etc.


ELA Student essay competition
Closing date: 31 May 2021
More information

World Food Programme: PD Intern – Digitisation in the Southern Africa region
Closing date: 2 May 2021 – Please note that the deadline is at 11:59 pm Rome time (GMT + 1)
More information

Canada: University of Alberta Graduate Study Opportunities
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Educor: Lecturer: Humanities (Legal)
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Opportunity at IUCN – Consultant procurement-EPR in Mozambique
Environmental Law Centre is currently looking for potential consultants for the development of an Analysis of Effectiveness of Extended Producer Responsibility Frameworks Relating to Marine Plastic Pollution In Mozambique. The purpose of the consultancy is to provide a legal and policy analysis and a set of recommendations for an improved EPR process in the country. For more information please see the attached Terms of Reference. Candidates should present a short technical and financial proposal for the procurement process. Please feel free to share this opportunity with any potential experts and forward documents and any questions to .

MRV Manager, Gold Standard – Remote
Closing date: 30 April 2021
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Manager, Natural Climate Solutions, Land Life Company – Amsterdam/Remote
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Analyst, Climate Change, Tasman Environmental Markets – Melbourne
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Programme Manager, Climate Action, Sustainable Business Council – Auckland/Wellington
Closing date: 23 April 2021
More information



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