ELA Newsletter 2021-32

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27 August 2021



Second Special Appropriation Bill, 2021 [B17-2021]


Electoral Laws Amendment Act 4 of 2021 – Proc R35 in GG 45060 of 27 August 2021 – commenced 27 August 2021


Promotion of Access to Information Act 2 of 2000 – GN R757 in GG 45057 of 27 August 2021 – Regulations relating to the Promotion of Access to Information, 2021 published and previous regulations published in GN R187 in GG 23119 of 15 February 2002

Astronomy Geographic Advantage Act 21 of 2007 – GN 753 in GG 45045 of 26 August 2021 -Revised exempted radio frequency spectrum exempted for use within the Karoo Central Astronomy Advantage Areas (KCAAAs)



National Environmental Management: Protected Areas Act 57 of 2003 – PN 82 in PG 3289 of 20 August 2021-Thaba Chweu and Bushbuckridge Local Municipalities – Declaration of an area as part of an existing nature reserve – Blyderivierspoort Nature Reserve

Eastern Cape

Spatial Planning and Land Use Management Act 16 of 2013 – PN 118 in PG 4613 of 23 August 2021 -Chris Hani District Municipality – Extension of term of contract of the Municipal Planning Tribunal members

KwaZulu Natal

Spatial Planning and Land Use Management Act 16 of 2013 – MN 84 in PG 2318 of 26 August 2021 – Ray Nkonyeni and uMuziwabantu Local Municipalities – Extension of term office for members of the Joint Municipal Planning Tribunal for a period of 12 months

Western Cape

Constitution of the Republic of South Africa, 1996 – Proc 11 in PG 8478 of 25 August 2021 – Transfer of administration and powers and functions entrusted by legislation to certain Members of the Executive Council published with effect from 1 April 2022


Rationalisation of Local Government Affairs Act 10 of 1998 and Local Government: Municipal Systems Act 32 of 2000 – LAN 935 in PG 283 of 25 August 2021 – Midvaal Local Municipality – Implementation of the Outdoor Advertising By-law




Forestry South Africa v Minister of Human Settlements, Water & Sanitation and Others (19684/2019) [2021] ZAWCHC 164 (23 August 2021) [provided by Carin Bosman CBSS]

“[1] Afforestation, in common parlance, is the planting of trees or the establishment of a forest on land which had not previously been forested. Section 36 (1) of the National Water Act No. 36 of 1998 (“the NWA”) declared, for the first time, the use of land for afforestation for commercial purposes as a “stream flow reduction activity”.  Section 32 of the NWA, in turn, included a “stream flow reduction activity” as an “existing lawful water use”.

[2]       The reason for the above is clear. Afforestation uses soil water and groundwater within a catchment area, thereby reducing the flow of water which would otherwise have run into streams and eventually to other users downstream who are dependent on water from the catchment area.

[3]       The essence of this matter revolves around the interpretation of the concept “existing lawful water use” in the context of a “stream flow reduction activity” in relation to the use of land for commercial afforestation purposes.”


Bushfire Survivors for Climate Action Incorporated v Environment Protection Authority [2021] NSWLEC 92

“Judicial Review – public duty – failure to perform – duty to develop environmental quality objectives, guidelines and policies to ensure environment protection – meaning and content of duty – discretion in performing duty – controls on the exercise of discretion – duty requires the development of objectives, guidelines and policies to ensure environment protection from climate change – breach of duty – mandamus to compel performance of duty”

“The Court orders:

(1) The Environment Protection Authority, in accordance with s 9(1)(a) of the Protection of the Environment Administration Act 1991 (NSW), is to develop environmental quality objectives, guidelines and policies to ensure environment protection from climate change.

(2)   The respondent is to pay the applicant’s costs of the proceedings.”




Chi Ngang C and Kamga SD (eds) Natural Resource Sovereignty and the Right to Development in Africa (Routledge 2021)


Robison, Jason “Community in the Colorado River Basin” 2021 57 Idaho Law Review

Yonglong Lu and Bullock James M “Biodiversity conservation in a changing environment beyond 2020” 2021 7(35) Science Advances DOI: 10.1126/sciadv.abl8162

Boyes DH et al “Street lighting has detrimental impacts on local insect populations” 2021 7(35) Science Advances DOI: 10.1126/sciadv.abi8322

Leonard B et al “Allow ‘nonuse rights’ to conserve natural resources” 2021 373(6558) Science 958-961 DOI: 10.1126/science.abi4573

News, Blogs, Discussions, Websites, Videos, ETC

South Africa

Biodiversity, Protected Areas, Culture

Mail & Guardian: Evans S “Rolling blind: What happens when dung beetles get lost?” 26 August 2021

Bizcommunity: “Meet Makuleke’s first female field guide: Shiluva Khosa” 26 August 2021

Climate Change and Energy

DFFE: “Minister Creecy publishes the 7th National Greenhouse Gas Inventory Report” 24 August 2021

Business Live: Paton C “SA’s greenhouse gas emissions up 10%” 26 August 2021

Daily Maverick: Van Diemen E “The cost of pollution: Eskom, Sasol and the vagaries of environmental law compliance in South Africa” 25 August 2021 [provided by Anél du Plessis, CLES, NWU]

The Herald: “Eskom’s old data for fresh Thyspunt foray under fire” 26 August 2021 [Legalbrief 26 August 2021]

Daily Maverick: Sgqolana T “Thyspunt nuke plant plan: For and against bang heads” 27 August 2021

Mail & Guardian: Phillips T “Nuke hearings: Eskom safety plans ‘f lawed’” 28 August 2021

Business Live: Paton C “Gwede Mantashe says developmental needs eclipse Eskom’s green dream” 24 August 2021

Business Day: Paton C “Nersa pledges to enter 21st century” 18 August 2021 [Legalbrief Environmental 24 August 2021]

Business Day: Paton C “Minister open to Eskom’s green deal” 24 August 2021

Webber Wentzel: Van der Poel J, Felekis A and Kota M “New issues with amended amended Schedule 2 of the Electricity Regulation Act for private power generation” 23 August 2021

Business Day: Isaacs L “Nersa gets flak over approval for another 2500 MW of nuclear power” 23 August 2021

Business Live: “Resurgent Sasol resets emission targets” 22 August 2021

General: More allegations of Kusile kickbacks emerge
“Another senior official working at Eskom’s tainted Group Capital Division, Koena Mogolola, allegedly abused her position as a contracts manager at the Kusile power station to benefit from kickbacks, including a R190 000 payment facilitated by Mogolola’s colleague, from a supplier. A News24 report says this follows revelations that numerous others in Group Capital were either dismissed or resigned following graft allegations against them. The division was responsible for building power stations, including Kusile, and managing large contracts. The division’s chief executive Abram Masango, former senior contracts manager France Hlakudi, former senior contracts manager Dianah Motlou and former contracts manager Mildred Nyoka, among others, allegedly received millions in kickbacks from contractors who funded their lavish lifestyles. Law firm Bowmans investigated Mogolola in 2019 and found that an Eskom supplier, Data Descent Trading – which Mogolola appointed on a contract she oversaw – paid R190 000 on her behalf for ‘attorney transfer fees’ in 2017 for a property she owned in Pretoria. Eskom also charged Mogolola with misconduct when she appointed at least two companies in which she had a personal interest, including Indlela JCT, which was to supply sanitary towels as a corporate social investment project, but Eskom charged that Mogolola appointed the company ‘with the intention of receiving a financial benefit’. Eskom slapped Mogolola with five charges, including financial misconduct, dishonesty and abuse of her position in 2019. Although Mogolola had tendered her resignation for 31 March 2019, she tried to abruptly end her time at Eskom a week earlier once Bowmans and Eskom confronted her with the allegations.” Full News24 report Legalbrief Forensic 26 August 2021

Business Day: Eberhard A “Power market can and must improve supply” 23 August 2021

Mining Weekly: “South Africa aims to bring pilot carbon capture project online in 2023” 23 August 2021

Mail & Guardian: Bega S “Civil society groups angered by lack of transparency on Koeberg’s life extension” 26 August 2021

Engineering News: Liedtke S “Wesley-Ciskei wind energy farm supplying electricity to the grid” 27 August 2021

Polity: Creamer T “Op-ed – Green vision” 27 August 2021

Environmental enforcement

GroundUp: Luhanga P “Jobseekers flock to proposed Amazon site in Cape Town – Hundreds queue at River Club development in the hope of getting work” 26 August 2021

Law Gazette: Slingo J “Extinction Rebellion confirms plans to target City law firms” 24 August 2021

DFFE: “Speech by Minister Barbara Creecy in response to the debate in the National Assembly on the report by the Portfolio Committee of Environment, Forestry and Fisheries on its oversight visit post the civil unrest to KwaZulu-Natal and Gauteng” 25 August 2021

DFFE: “Delegation of power for SANParks and iSimangaliso Wetland Park Authority to issue off-road vehicle permits in terms of the Control of Use of Vehicles in the Coastal Area Regulations”

Local Government

SA News: “Minister Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma signs African Charter on the Values and Principles of Decentralisation, Local Governance and Local Development” 25 August 2021 [provided by Anél du Plessis, CLES NWU]

Sunday Times: Masweneng K “Up in the air: low air quality has spiked in Gauteng this winter -The industrial Sebokeng in the Vaal recorded the poorest air quality this winter, followed by Jabavu in Soweto” 18 August 2021 [Legalbrief Environmental 24 August 2021]

Daily Maverick: Van Diemen E “High court strikes down ‘unlawful and unconstitutional’ eviction of homeless people from Alberts Farm — City of Joburg to help restore destroyed dwellings” 22 August 2021 [Legalbrief Environmental 24 August 2021]

Moneyweb: Ryan C “North West residents appeal court decision handing service delivery back to municipality” 23 August 2021 [Legalbrief Environmental 24 August 2021]

GroundUp: Luhanga P “Developers try to overturn sale of land for Cape Town housing development” 25 August 2021

GroundUp: Damons M “Families want electricity bills from lockdown to be scrapped – Cape Winelands municipality battling to recover steep outstanding bills” 24 August 2021

GroundUp: Mafata M “Joburg’s informal traders call for police to stop confiscating their goods – Traders pay between R1,600 and R3,000 to retrieve their stock” 20 August 2021


Sunday Independent: Ngoepe K “Middelburg aiming to reinvent itself following mine closures” 22 August 2021

Business Live: Leon P “Well-written bill may finally unlock SA’s upstream petroleum potential” 26 August 2021

Mining Weekly: Creamer T “As Mpumalanga towns plot future beyond coal, workers express pain over mine closures” 27 August 2021

Mining Weekly: Creamer M “Important link between South Africa’s mining industry and its public capital markets is broken” 27 August 2021

Water, Waste, Oceans and Chemicals

Thomas Reuters Foundation: Harrisberg K “Fish and livelihoods poisoned by South African chemical spill” 19 August 2021

GroundUp: Human L “6,000 people sign petition demanding City of Cape Town comes clean on water quality” 26 August 2021

Bizcommunity: “UJ becomes the first academic institution to join SA Plastics Pact” 24 August 2021

DFFE: “Probe into UPL spill expected to be finalised by end September: Minister Creecy” 25 August 2021

Environmental: Lindiwe Sisulu intervened in Cape’s Amazon project
“A Cape Town civic organisation says former Minister of Water & Sanitation Lindiwe Sisulu has ‘usurped’ the powers of the water tribunal by uplifting the suspension of a water use licence issued to the developers of the multibillion-rand redevelopment of the River Club in Observatory, Cape Town. US multinational technology company Amazon is the anchor tenant in the R4.6bn mixed-use development, which will house its new African headquarters, and include residential units, office and retail space, a hotel, gyms, restaurants, conferencing, schools and event space. A Mail & Guardian investigation has found that Sisulu overturned the appeal process giving the Liesbeek Leisure Properties Trust (LLPT), which runs the multibillion-rand redevelopment of the River Club, a water licence. The investigation also revealed that Sisulu’s special adviser, Jurgek Kögl, met with the LLTP on the matter. In 2012, Kögl was named by amaBhungane as one of the benefactors of former President Jacob Zuma. Asked about this ‘special treatment’ the department’s spokesperson Sputnik Ratau reportedly said the Minister has the powers to direct otherwise. ‘The Minister exercised her powers in terms of section 148(2)(b), based on all factors considered in the initial decision-making process, to allow the developer to continue exercising the water use licence. As a responsible government that has the ultimate duty to ensure that our nation’s water resources are being protected and conserved, the government also has a responsibility to ensure our nation’s water resources are being developed and used in a sustainable and equitable manner.’ Ratau said Sisulu’s upliftment of the appeal is ‘not necessarily common’ but it does happen.
Asked about Kögl’s meeting with the developers, Ratau said the department ‘embraces’ Batho Pele principles. ‘One … is openness to the people served by the department. The Minister’s advisers meet with people to understand the matters that are being considered so that they provide well-informed advice to the Minister. The recommendation the Minister considers is generated by the administrative component of the department.’ But, says the M&G report, Kögl never met with the Observatory Civic Association (OCA) – which has since 2016 been fighting against the development – as he did with the developers. The OCA has previously written to the head of Amazon, Jeff Bezos, urging the company to withdraw from the project, or Amazon’s investment would be ‘forever associated with environmental destruction, greed over protection of heritage and the environment and a complete abdication of any commitment to addressing climate change’. In his appeal submitted to the tribunal, Tauriq Jenkins, of the Goringhaicona Khoi Khoin Indigenous Traditional Council (GKKITC), said the approval of the licence is an ‘egregious offence’ against indigenous people with whom the GKKITC is partnered with in opposing the development on the River Club site where the first wars of colonial resistance were fought. In documents, LLPT states that any form of delay or suspension of the project while an appeal process is under way ‘will expose the developer to severe financial prejudice’ and that the appeal was a strategy to delay the project and to ‘scupper’ it. The environmental, social and economic benefits of the development have been ‘unequivocally’ established, comprehensively assessed and ‘found to be positive and beneficial’, its lawyers told Sisulu.” Full Mail & Guardian report (subscription needed) Legalbrief 27 August 2021

Waste: SA draft opposing global plastics treaty slammed
“A draft position by SA suggesting it will vote against a proposed global plastics treaty at a ministerial meeting next month looks like a ‘clear case’ of heavy lobbying from the industry sector, according to an international expert. According to a Mail & Guardian Online report, in June, it was reported that a confidential draft position paper by the Department of Forestry, Fisheries & the Environment (DFFE) revealed the country would not support the planned treaty. David Azoulay, the director of environmental health at the no-profit Centre for International Environmental Law, said: ‘This is clearly just a copy and paste of industry arguments who realise that a treaty would require them to reconsider their polluting business model that rests on externalising the massive costs of plastic pollution on to society’. ‘We believe that it very much weakens South African standing on the international scene, as well its potential regional leadership as it so clearly goes against the firmly held positions of the rest of the region,’ Azoulay said, alluding to a resolution at the Bamako Convention, Congress of the Parties and the African Ministerial Conference on the Environment meeting. DFFE spokesperson Albi Modise said: ‘At this stage no decision whatsoever has been taken by the department on any new international agreement that arises from UNEA (UN Environment Assembly) with regard to plastic waste,’ adding that leaked draft documents did not represent final decisions of the organisation.” Full Mail & Guardian Online report Legalbrief Environmental 24 August 2021]

Water: Department flags allegedly illegal dams off Kouga River
“About 17 large farm dams – all allegedly illegally built – have been identified by the Department of Water & Sanitation for urgent intervention as Nelson Mandela Bay edges closer to day zero. According to a report in The Herald, the dams were built on farms bordering the Kouga River and its tributaries and possibly play a part in stopping maximum flow to the Kouga Dam. The dam feeds Gamtoos Valley farmers and the towns of Hankey, Patensie, Loerie and Thornhill, all in the Kouga municipality, as well as the Kariega township of KwaNobuhle in Nelson Mandela Bay. The National Water Act imposes strict sanctions on those found guilty of illegal storage and the ‘stealing’ of water from rivers. The department said last week it was still investigating a three year-old report which cited at least 100 illegal farm dams in the Kouga area. Department spokesperson Sputnik Ratau said the report that emerged in 2018 had been completed by a private company and the findings needed to be systematically reviewed.” Full report in The Herald (subscription needed) Legalbrief Environmental 24 August 2021

SANews: “DWS continues to implement measures to address water pollution” 17 August 2021 [Legalbrief Environmental 24 August 2021]

Mail & Guardian: Bega S “South Africa wastes 10 million tons of food a year” 21 August 2021

Mail & Guardian: “How big data offers big opportunities for industrial water users” 26 August 2021

allAfrica: Zama L “South Africa: Mbongeni Buthelezi Turns Trash Into Treasure” 27 August 2021


Afrobarometer: “AD474: South Africans’ trust in institutions and representatives reaches new low” 24 August 2021

ASSAf Scientific Advisory Group on Emergencies (SAGE) Webinars on Why Environmental Management Must Become The New Normal – Available on the ASSAf YouTube channel. Please watch and download here:
SAGE Webinar 1_29 July 2021: https://youtu.be/G8OPOmQkNCE
SAGE Webinar 2_5 August 2021: https://youtu.be/1WuM6XFiZLQ
SAGE Webinar 3_12 August 2021: https://youtu.be/M7z61WGk5G8
SAGE Webinar 4_19 August 2021: https://youtu.be/WMiYtBZIlv4

NGO Pulse: “Corporate Social Investment – From Feeble to Forceful, Through Effective Measurement” undated

Bizcommunity: Ramdeo C “SA needs a solution-driven approach to ensure access to safe and healthy food” 25 August 2021


Biodiversity, Soil, Protected Areas and Culture

Nature: Barbier N “African tropical montane forests store more carbon than was thought” 25 August 2021

Mail & Guardian: Bega S “Plastic pollution causes horrific injuries to Cape fur seals in two Namibian colonies” 28 August 2021

allAfrica: Truscott R “Kenya: Top of the Class – Clever Kenyan Elephants Learn to Use Rail Underpasses” 28 August 2021

allAfrica: Dube M “Botswana: De Beers, National Geographic Form Partnership to Protect Okavango Delta” 27 August 2021

allAfrica: Adude P “Uganda Risks Losing All Forest Cover By 2040 – NFA” 25 August 2021

Climate Change and Energy

Lexology: “In review: renewable energy policy and regulation in Nigeria” 11 August 2021

News24: Burkhardt P and Clark A “Methane spotted leaking from African greenhouse gas hotspot” 28 August 2021

Bizcommunity: Steele W “Ordinary people, extraordinary change: Addressing the climate emergency through ‘quiet activism” 16 August 2021

allAfrica: Nkurunziza M “Rwanda: Parts of Rwanda Likely to Face Acute Dry Spells Similar to 2016” 27 August 2021

allAfrica: Matasva R “Zimbabwe: Manicaland Registers 135 Percent Increase in Veld Fire Incidences” 27 August 2021

Engineering News: Arnoldi M “Irena guides Botswana govt on its immense renewable energy potential” 27 August 2021

Environmental enforcement

Extractives Baraza: “Nigeria: Shell and The Court Judgement” 24 August 2021

Local government

ICLEI: “Feature City Profile: Monrovia: Tackling Monrovia’s climate challenges through community engagement”

Lexology: Cobbinah PB and Erdiaw-Kwasi MO “People in Accra’s slums know green spaces are important: planners should take heed” 25 August 2021


Extractives Baraza: Murungi P “Is Uganda’s $4b Oil Refinery a Viable Investment?” 24 August 2021

FPA: “Liberia: Restoration Baptist Church Wants National Legislature Restore Liberians 5% Equity in Petroleum Contracts” 25 August 2021

Bizcommunity: “Waste from Angola’s Catoca diamond mine leaked into waterways last month” 25 August 2021

allAfrica: Dubar A “Liberia: UNDP, Society for the Conservation of Nature Hold Training Workshop for Artisanal and Small Scale Miners Operating Within the Gola Forest Landscape” 27 August 2021

allAfrica: Kadzere M “Zimbabwe: Mining Destroys Csc Ranches” 26 August 2021

Water, oceans, waste and chemicals

allAfrica: Qadir M “Africa: Needed in the Global South – Wastewater Collection for Covid-19 Detection” 26 August 2021

allAfrica: Sanga A “Tanzania: Unlicensed Water Well Drillers Put On Notice” 27 August 2021

allAfrica: Mersie A “From garbage to garden, Nairobi resident helps dumping ground bloom” 27 August 2021


Polity: “UN chief says social fabric of Ethiopia being torn apart” 27 August 2021


Biodiversity, Protected Areas, and Culture

Natural Justice: Lassen B “Can the Biodiversity Framework rise to the challenge of a living planet?” 23 August 2021

IISD ENB: Convention on Biological Diversity – CBD | 3rd Meeting of the Open-ended Working Group on the Post-2020 Global Biodiversity Framework | 23 August – 3 September 2021 | Online

Clean Energy Wire: Meza E “Climate protection role of German forests underestimated – report” 24 August 2021

Clean Energy Wire: Appunn K “Austria and Germany want EU to keep out of national forest policy”

Mongabay: Dickie G “Not just for humans — scientists turn to vaccines to save endangered species” 20 August 2021

Lexology: “Manitoba Moving Away from Environment Act Licences for Forest Management Plans” [Canada] 21 August 2021

The Mirror: Shadwell T “Extinction Rebellion target Buckingham Palace and fill fountain with fake blood” 26 August 2021

Nature: “Giant clams have a growth spurt — thanks to pollution” 26 August 2021

Lexology: “The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Shows Its Texas Mussel” 26 August 2021

IISD ENB: IUCN World Conservation Congress 2020 | 3–11 September 2021 | Marseille, France, and Online

Nature: Kazlov M “Australia’s cane toads evolved as cannibals with frightening speed” 25 August 2021

Thomas Reuters Foundation: “UNESCO, citing destroyed Bamiyan Buddhas, urges Afghan cultural protection” 19 August 2021

Fauquier Now: “Study questions Va. support for conservation easements” 25 August 2021

Mail & Guardian: Bega S “Save forests to protect us from future pandemics — Harvard scientists” 28 August 2021

The Independent: Dunne D “Landmark UK deforestation law ‘may only have limited impact’” 26 August 2021

DW: “Spain: Thousands form human chain around crisis-hit lagoon” 29 August 2021

Climate Change and Energy

The Hill: Mintz JA “UN Glasgow summit may be our last chance to prevent self-created climate disaster” 24 August 2021

Bloomberg Law: Badrinarayana D “IPCC Report Drives Urgent Agenda for World on Climate Change” 24 August 2021

Nature: “So much ice is melting that Earth’s crust is moving” 24 August 2021

BBC: McGrath M “Climate change: Europe’s extreme rains made more likely by humans” 23 August 2021

Nature: “Control methane to slow global warming — fast” 25 August 2021

Lexology: “How is ESG driving change in the energy sector?” 25 August 2021

The Guardian: Murphy K and Morton A “Energy board vows to consult widely after Australian renewables industry says rules could prop up coal” 25 August 2021

The Independent: Dunne D “Climate crisis: 2020 by far Europe’s hottest year on record, data shows” 26 August 2021

Nature: Else H “Climate change implicated in Germany’s deadly floods” 26 August 2021

Thomas Reuters Foundation: Shank M and Grijalva R “Opinion: Climate change threatens Americans’ rights to life, liberty and property” 24 August 2021

Thomas Reuters Foundation: “China to pursue bigger ocean carbon sinks to help meet climate goals” 27 August 2021

Lexology: “IPCC Sixth Assessment Report What does it mean for NZ?” 23 August 2021

The Guardian: Cox L “How a hot blob off New Zealand is contributing to drought in South America” 27 August 2021

The Guardian: Davies L “‘Use your £11bn climate fund to pay for family planning,’ UK told” 26 August 2021

The Guardian: Cox L and Morton A “Clean energy interest soars in NSW as states resist rules to prop up coal” 26 August 2021

The Guardian: Kurmelovs R “Solar power in Australia outstrips coal-fired electricity for first time” 23 August 2021

The Independent: Sandoval K “Minnesota wildfire doubles in size and makes its own weather system” 25 August 2021

The Independent: “Blue whales return to Spain’s Atlantic coast after decades away” 25 August 2021

Euractiv: Dahm J “Austrian organic farmers fear being left behind in national CAP plan” 26 August 2021

Euractiv: Gant J “Greek fires: Blaming climate change is only the start, phasing out fossil fuels is the rest” 26 August 2021

Euractiv: Bauer-Babef C “It’s crunch time for France’s tumultuous renewable energy debate” 26 August 2021

Clean Energy Wire: Meza E “Germany’s national emissions trading set to begin in October” 27 August 2021

Environmental Enforcement

Lexology: “Another NGO Asks a Federal Appeals Court to Manage EPA. What’s Next?” [USA] 24 August 2021

Lexology: “At least these NIMBYies are honest — another legal challenge to the Vineyard Wind project” [USA] 25 August 2021

The Canberra Times: Costin L “NSW court makes key climate change ruling” 26 August 2021

Thomas Reuters Foundation: Biron CL “Feature – Biden ‘climate corps’ plan excites young Americans seeking green jobs” 24 August 2021

Thomas Reuters Foundation: “Brazil’s top court pushes indigenous land ruling to next week” 26 August 2021

Lexology: “Governor Evers Signs Legislation Amending Environmental Compliance Audit Program to Incentivize and Streamline Business Participation” [USA] 16 August 2021

Lexology: “The new norm: climate-focused management and reporting” 19 August 2021

The Jurist: Williams K “Alaska judge dismisses Trump-era approvals for Arctic oil project” 22 August 2021

Euractiv: Taylor K “Permit for Germany’s newest coal-fired power plant was invalid, court rules” 27 August 2021

Euractiv: “German court says EU ‘unbundling’ rules apply to Nord Stream 2 pipeline” 26 August 2021

Euractiv: Kurmayer NJ “Summer controversy illustrates polarisation of hydrogen debate” 27 August 2021

Euractiv: “Carbon taxes could hurt Russia more than sanctions, says oil tsar” 24 August 2021

Local government

Lexology: “Court Upholds Special CEQA Streamlining Legislation for Oakland A’s Park Project” 25 August 2021

Thomas Reuters Foundation: Sherfinski D “U.S. infrastructure bill aims to cool heat inequity in cities” 19 August 2021

Thomas Reuters Foundation: Gebeily M “Why are power outages paralyzing Lebanon?” 20 August 2021

ICLEI City Talk: Wessinghage R “How four cities are fostering equity-focused climate action” 19 August 2021

ICLEI: “Rio de Janeiro, Mexico City and AMVA exchanged experiences on their bicycle systems” 28 July 2021

ICLEI City Talk: Hintz J “How Pittsburgh is leveraging its purchasing power for sustainability” 24 August 2021

ICLEI: Ward I “Collaborating for change: Yokohama shares innovative solutions to advance the SDGs” 16 August 2021

ICLEI Canada: “Small and Rural Communities Climate Action Guidebook”

Scottish Government: “Edinburgh Declaration on post-2020 global biodiversity framework” 18 August 2021

The Guardian: “Brussels battles old prejudices as it frees unloved river from its vault” 27 August 2021

The Guardian: Carrington D “Air pollution linked to more severe mental illness – study” 27 August 2021

Euractiv: Fuchs D et al “Sustainable living space in a world of limits: a need for dialogue” 27 August 2021


Lexology: “Federal Court expands scope of activities associated with coal mining projects caught by water trigger under the EPBC Act” [Australia] 23 August 2021

Utility Dive: Walton R “EPA urges FERC to use social cost of carbon in gas project reviews” 27 August 2021

Thomas Reuters Foundation: “Rio Tinto yet to pay compensation over sacred site destruction” 27 August 2021

Thomas Reuters Foundation: “Rio Tinto-led plan for major lithium mine stirs protests in Serbia” 26 August 2021

Euractiv: “Denmark, Costa Rica seek alliance to speed up the end of oil and gas” 26 August 2021

Water, Oceans, Waste and Chemicals

Climate Home News: “Pacific islands call for zero carbon shipping by 2050, citing IPCC report” 23 August 2021

Lexology: “Extra Time for States In Clean Water Act Match Unlikely to End” [USA] 23 August 2021

Lexology: “In a Landmark Request, NJDEP Asks USEPA to Designate the Lower Hackensack River as a Superfund Site” 20 August 2021

Lexology: “Fifth District Holds Issue Exhaustion Not Required Where Agency Gave No Notice of Intent To Rely On CEQA Exemption Prior to Hearing, And Existing Facilities Categorical Exemption Does Not Apply to Unlined Landfills As A Matter of Law” [USA] 23 August 2021

Lexology: “Vietnam: Proposed regulations on mandatory product recycling under new draft decree implementing the new law on environmental protection” 23 August 2021

Lexology: “Second Circuit Holds CERCLA Claims Were Prudentially Ripe Despite Ongoing PRP Investigation by EPA” [USA] 24 August 2021

Lexology: “EPA Bans Use of Chlorpyrifos (Pesticide) on All Food” [USA] 24 August 2021

Lexology: “Chile: Waste management bill, the extended producer responsibility and recycling promotion, in particular, tire regulation” 24 August 2021

IISD SDG Knowledge Hub: Harlin J et al “In Need of Speed: Data can Accelerate Progress Towards Water and Sanitation for All” 23 August 2021

IISD SDG Knowledge Hub: “UNEP Report Spotlights Best Alternatives to Single-Use Plastic Products” 25 August 2021

Science: Stokstad E “High in the Colorado Rockies, scientists launch search for causes of western water woes” 24 August 2021

Science: XiaoZhi Lim “Maine’s ban on ‘forever chemicals’ marks a big win for some scientists” 27 August 2021

Lexology: “TSCA’s Information Grab – Manufacturers and Importers Subject to Proposed Expansive Ten-Year “Look Back” PFAS Reporting Requirement” 25 August 2021

Nature: Tollefson D “Can artificially altered clouds save the Great Barrier Reef?” 25 August 2021

Lexology: “Neues deutsches Lieferkettengesetz – neuer Standard für menschenrechtliche und umweltbezogene Sorgfaltspflichten globaler Lieferketten” [New German Supply Chain Act – new standard for human rights and environmental due diligence obligations of global supply chains] 26 August 2021

IISD ENB: Ministerial Conference on Marine Litter and Plastic Pollution | 1–2 September 2021 | Geneva, Switzerland, and online

Lexology: “EPA and Army Corps Announce Public Meetings to Consider Retraction of Definition of Waters of the United States” 23 August 2021

Lexology: “Plastic Waste Management (Amendment) Rules, 2021: Wading through the uncharted territory of plastic waste management” [India] 19 August 2021

Guardian: Carrington D “Single-use plastic plates and cutlery to be banned in England” 27 August 2021

The Independent: Carrington D “Marine life under threat as up to 95% of ocean surface climates may disappear by 2100, scientists warn” 27 August 2021

Reuters: Gronholt-pedersen J “Greenland expedition discover ‘world’s northernmost island’” 28 August 2021


Lexology: “The EU is defining green business – now it has social factors in its sights” 20 August 2021

Lexology: “Disaster Preparedness Toolkit” [USA – for businesses] 24 August 2021

IISD SDG Knowledge Hub: “Resilience in a Riskier World” 25 August 2021

Lexology: “ESG Investing Regulations: A Comparative Analysis of Europe and Turkey” 25 August 2021

Lexology: “The Impact of French and German ESG Due Diligence Laws on Business” 25 August 2021

IISD SDG Knowledge Hub: “Consultation Underway on New Indicator for SDG Target 17.3” 25 August 2021

Nature: Malapaty S “Afghanistan’s terrified scientists predict huge research losses” 27 August 2021

Thomas Reuters Foundation:  Chandran R “Afghan women’s hard-won land rights seen at risk under Taliban” 25 August 2021

Thomas Reuters Foundation: Blomberg M and Dara M “Land to lose: coronavirus compounds debt crisis in Cambodia” 21 September 2021

Polity: “Reflecting the duality of gender and climate in the EIB’s Environmental and Social Sustainability Framework’s Standard 5 on Climate Change” 24 August 2021

Conferences, Workshops, Study Opportunities


ELA Mpumalanga Branch Webinar with Lyndon de Meillon, MSc: The Amazing Alluvial Diamond Deposits of South Africa
Date: 9 September 2021
Time: 1:00 pm – 2:30 pm (online)
Registration and more information on the ELA Website

The Western Cape Branch of IAIAsa online branch event: Protection of Personal Information Act: How will POPIA impact EIA’s
Speakers and Panel: Advocate Charmaine Maré (DEA&DP); Mare-Liez Oosthuizen (DEA&DP); Eldon van Boom (DEA&DP); Danie Swanepoel (DEA&DP); Gerhard Gerber (DEA&DP)
Date: 24 August 2021
Time: 12h00 to 14h00
Platform: Join the Zoom event using this link.
Registration closes 17h00 on Monday, 23 August 2021.
Places are limited. We therefore respectfully request that if you register and cannot attend you cancel your registration on by 17h00 on 23 August 2021, failing which a no-show fee will be applicable.

Environmental Law Association Student and Annual Conferences: Celebrating 25 Years of the 1996 South African Environmental Right
Annual Conference: 15-18 September 2021 (online)
Student Conference: 13-14 September 2021 (online)
Spread over a few days to avoid screen fatigue
Draft Programme and Registration available here

NWU CLES 2nd Annual National Postgraduate Student Conference on Local Government & Urban Governance: Law and Governance in a Pandemic: Towards Safe, Inclusive, Resilient and Sustainable Cities and Towns”
Dates: 30 November – 2 December 2021
Call for Abstracts

Conservation Symposium: Exploring the Science, Practice and Value of Nature Conservation
Dates: 1-5 November 2021
The ELA will host its own session at the Conference – see information sent in separate email.
Conservation Symposium will be free and online for 2021.
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

  • 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

Annual IMIBIZO: Buoyant Solutions for Ocean Sustainability
Dates: 18-22 October 2021
Workshop 1: Exploring potential marine options for climate intervention
Workshop 2: Lighting the ‘grey zone: how can we integrate human dimensions in decadal-scale prediction systems?
Workshop 3: Ocean governance and climate adaptation: comparing responses, charting future courses 
Deadline for abstracts: 16 August 2021 [attendance only with accepted abstract]
More information

NWU CLES Critical Conversation series: Prof Marius Pieterse (University of the Witwatersrand) Making room for corporate co-governance of South African cities in the public-law relationship
Date: 16 September 2021, 14:00 – 15:15pm
Please register for this event by 14 September 2021

The Royal Society of South Africa and the Academy of Science of South Africa Webinar: A New Deal for People and Nature
Speaker: Dr Morné du Plessis – CEO WWF South Africa
Date: 1 September at 5pm
Please register in advance to obtain the Zoom link: RSVP – 1 September 2021 – Royal Society of South Africa (royalsocietysa.org.za)

Webber Wentzel: In conversation with Dr. Patrick Soon-Shiong
Dr Soon-Shiong is a South African physician, surgeon, scientist, inventor, technologist and philanthropist who has devoted his career to understanding the fundamental biology driving life-threatening diseases and translating these insights into medical innovations with global impact.
Date:  Tuesday, 14 September 2021
Time:   17h00 – 18h00 (CAT)

Free State Centre for Human Rights 4th 4 International Conference on the Right to Development: Right to Development and Illicit Financial Flows from Africa Call for Abstracts
Datum: 01- 02 November 2021
We welcome contributions that focus on the following sub-themes or any related themes:

  • The impacts of illicit financial flows on the realisation of the right to development;
  • Transnational crimes and the right to development in Africa;
  • Multinational corporations, illicit financial flows and the right to development in Africa;
  • Illicit financial flows, Agenda 2063 and the right to development in Africa;
  • The UN Convention against corruption, illicit financial flows and the right to development in Africa;
  • The AU Convention Against Corruption, illicit financial flows and the right to development in Africa

Individual presentations: Submit a short abstract of no more than 300 words and a short CV/bio (150 words) to Gerard Kamga at before or on 10 September 2021
Notification of accepted abstracts and panels for the conference: 24 September 2021
Online Conference: 01-02 November 2021
Submission of full selected papers for double blind peer-review: 23 December 2021

7th ASSAf Presidential Roundtable Discussion: “After the Riots: What really happened? Can we Prevent a Recurrence?”
Description:The purpose of the Academy of Science of South Africa (ASSAf) Presidential Roundtables on Science, Scholarship and Society is to together various experts and the best minds to address critical issues percolating in society and that are of interest to a broad audience that require an evidence-based dialogue.
Date: 28 October 2021

Time: 04:00 PM in Johannesburg
Enquiries: Ms Thato Morokong

IAIAsa Mini-Event – Prop Amends: Financial Provisioning Regulations, 2015: Proposed amendments to the Financial Provisioning Regulations, 2015
Date: 1 September 2021
Time: 14:00 – 15:15 (GMT+2)
More information and registration

Society for Law Teachers of Southern Africa – 2022 Conference Enforcing accountability: Consolidating democracy, compelling sustainable development in the 21st Century: Call for Papers
Dates: 10-16 July 2022
Venue: Nelson R Mandela School of Law, University of Fort Hare and held in East London
Interested individuals wishing to submit an abstract are encouraged to send the following: Title of Paper; Address including e-mail; and an abstract of not more than 250 words to Professor ES Nwauche (Chair of the LOC): on or before the 30th of January 2022

UCT Law@Work Courses
More Info / More Courses

  • Tech law and policy in Africa

Gain a greater understanding of how tech law and policy decisions are made. The ideal course for legal practitioners, advocates, government officials, and civil society.
Dates: 30 August-7 September
Sign up here

  • Shareholder activism and responsible investmentWe will cover what shareholder activism is, how it has evolved, expectations & legal rights that flow from it, and what is expected from a best governance practice perspective to support the corporate governance eco system.
    Date: 10 September
    Sign up here
  • The rule of law

Prof Hugh Corder, emeritus professor Dept. of Public Law UCT & Judge Dennis Davis of the High Court of Cape Town, will discuss the meaning of the Rule of Law & comment on the current state of the Rule of Law in SA today.
Date: 13 September
Sign up here

  • Lawyer of the future

The legal services market is going through significant change driven by technology, pressures on legal budgets, ever-expanding role of General Counsel or Chief Legal Officer, & more. We will help you navigate these changes!
Dates: 14-17 September
Sign up here

University of Johannesburg: LLM in Human Rights
More info: Email:
Website: https://www.uj.ac.za/faculties/law/Pages/Postgraduate.aspx


The Road to COP 26/CMA 3 Preparatory Lecture Series:
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

ACCESS Conversations on Climate Change

  • IPCC Assessment Report 6 launch events – To be announced (This will most likely be a separate set if events which will we will inform you about).
  • Panel 3: What is SA position going into the event – What is SA’s contribution and role? October. Details to follow.
  • Panel 4: Live from COP – what’s happening and what can we anticipate? November. Details to follow.
  • Panel 5: COP retrospective: what was achieved and what does it mean for us here? December. Details to follow.

To register please follow this link.

The GNHRE and REDESCA: Workshop on the new Escazú Agreement on rights to environmental information and participation in Latin American and the Caribbean
More information and registration here
The GNHRE has also been hosting a blog symposium on the agreement and you can read those posts here.

University of Eastern Finland Center for Climate Change, Energy and Environmental Law Webinar series: Role of law in governing the complexity of climate, energy and environmental systems
For more information and free registration

Webinar: Transforming Cities for People and Planet through Integrated Urban Development: Launch of UrbanShift
Date: 21 September 2021
Date: September 21, 2021
Time: Central Europe: 14:00

Innovative Governance of Food-Water-Energy Nexus in Cities – An IFWEN Training Programme
The training will take the following structure, which is detailed in the programme below:
19 August – Introduction to Training Course | Why Innovation for, and good governance of, Food-Water-Energy Nexus is Important for Urban Development
26 August – How Nexus and Nature Intersect; Understanding Food in the Nexus.
02 September – Understanding Water & Energy in the Nexus
09 September – Government Solutions to Nexus Approaches
16 September – Enablers: Financing Integrated Approaches & Ensuring Community Engagement
23 September – How does innovation take place for nexus initiatives
30 September – Taking forward lessons from IFWEN in your city
Sep 2, 2021 01:30 PM
Sep 9, 2021 01:30 PM
Sep 16, 2021 01:30 PM
Sep 23, 2021 01:30 PM
Sep 30, 2021 01:30 PM
More information

Vacancies, Bursaries, Funding, Opportunities, etc.


Vacancy: Part-Time Advocacy Officer, Birdlife South Africa
BirdLife South Africa is looking for a qualified, dedicated and dynamic person to fill the position of part-time Advocacy Officer. The ideal candidate would have a strong understanding of South African environmental law and policy, have experience in reviewing and commenting on environmental authorisation applications, and be a strategic and proactive individual with a passion for conservation.
The successful applicant will be required to commit 16 hours per week to the work of BirdLife South Africa’s Policy and Advocacy Programme and will be responsible for coordinating this Programme’s responses to development applications and authorisations which threaten priority species and habitats, contributing to its efforts to influence relevant legislative and policy processes and develop various guidance documents, and providing cross-cutting policy and advocacy support to other programmes in BirdLife South Africa’s Conservation Division.
The closing date to submit applications is 17 September 2021.
More information  

DFFE Notification: Call for nominations of experts to participate in the nexus and transformative change assessments
Closing date: 13 September 2021
More information

North-West University Faculty of Law: nGap lecturer (Mahikeng Campus)
Closing date: 3 September 2021
More information

Water Aid: Advocacy and Campaigns Officer 1 year fixed contract
Closing date: 10 September 2021
Person Specification Essential • A Bachelor’s Degree in Communication, Journalism, Public Policy, Political Science or another related Social Science degree or equivalent experience • Experience in a similar role in a non-profit environment. • Experience in advocacy and policy engagement, research, production of research products and documentation • Excellent written and verbal communication skills. • Excellent skills in Microsoft Office (specifically Word, Excel and PowerPoint) and experience in using publication related software. • Demonstrated effective influencing and networking skills across all levels (from communities, government, academia, civil society and media) • Good organisational and planning skills • Commitment to WaterAid’s values and a working style that reflects these. Desirable • Proven experience of using participatory approaches in implementing activities. Experience of using participatory approaches in the WASH sector will be an added advantage. • Good understanding of Human Rights Principles. • Strong established media network and experience in the use of digital media including social media platforms is highly recommended. If you are interested in the position and have the right skills and attributes, send your application, consisting of a letter of interest and a CV to   using Advocacy and Campaigns Advisor as the subject of the email.

For more vacancies in the field of Non-Governmental organisations go to http://www.ngopulse.org/

SA Trust: Southern Africa Trust: Programmes Coordinator, Climate Justice and Natural Resource Management
Closing date: 3 September 2021
More information

DBSA: Imbedded Generation Investment Programme
Closing date: 30 September 2021
More information

SARUA: Curriculum Coordinator for the SARUA Programme on Climate Change
SARUA is one of four Regional Organisations that has been commissioned by the SADC Secretariat to participate in the Intra-ACP Global Climate Change Alliance Plus (GCCA+) Programme in the Southern African Development Community region.
The objective of the lntra-ACP Global Climate Change Project for the SADC region is to increase the capabilities of SADC Member States to mitigate and adapt to the effects of climate change, in support of the achievement of the Regional Indicative Strategic Development Plan (RISDP), Africa Agenda 2063 and Sustainable Development Goals; and to have their voice better heard in the international climate change negotiations. As a programme partner, SARUA is responsible for enhancing the capacity of the region’s universities to contribute to climate change initiatives through the design and implementation of a master’s programme as well as short courses on climate change based. SARUA will build on its current Master’s curriculum for climate change and mitigation, which was developed from 204-2017 following an extensive mapping study, and has been implemented by various universities in the SADC. The programme was reviewed and approved by multiple stakeholders and educational experts and is considered a well-designed response to the expressed need for climate change and development-related capacity building in the region. Specific components of the curriculum focus on Key Concepts of Climate Change and Sustainable Development; Transdisciplinary Thinking and Skills; Mitigation and Adaptation in Theory and Practice; Agriculture, Food Security and Climate Change; Climate Change and Ecosystem Services; Climate Change and Urban Development and Climate Change and Social Justice.
SARUA is now ready to review and update the Masters Curriculum and is in need of a Curriculum Coordinator in line with the specific deliverables stipulated in the advertisement sent earlier via email from the ELA Secretariat.
We would be honoured if you could you therefore share the attached advertisement as widely as possible in order for us to complete this auspicious and important project successfully. Please note the application details:
Project duration: September 2021 to August 2022
Nature of Appointment: Part-Time
Location: As SARUA is a virtual network organisation, we work with a distributed team. The incumbent is not required to be based at a specific location.
Application closing date: 3 September 2021
Commencement date: As soon as possible but no later than 20 September 2021
Remuneration: ZAR 250 000
Please send applications to Prof René Pellissier, SARUA GCCA+ programme manager at: – Your applications should include a cover letter indicating why you should be considered for the position as well as a full CV. Please include two references that we may approach.

NWU: Deputy Vice-Chancellor Community Engagement & Campus Operations Campus Operations (Mahikeng Campus)
Closing date: 10 September 2021
More information


Head of International Offsets R&D, GreenCollar – Sydney/Remote

Quality and Compliance Manager, SustainCERT – Remote (Europe)

Senior Manager, Digital Programme (GSIQ), Gold Standard – Remote (Europe preferred)

Officer, Land Use and Forests, Standards Development, Gold Standard – Remote (India/Switzerland/UK)

Officer, Energy, Standards Development, Gold Standard – Remote (India/Switzerland/UK)

Senior Program Officer, Carbon Markets, Asia Society Policy Institute – Multiple Locations

MIT Environmental Solutions Initiative: Post-Doc in EJ in Transitioning Regions
More information

Head of International Offsets R&D, GreenCollar – Sydney/Remote


Featured Image: Johan Nel




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