The National Environmental Management Act

An Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) in terms of the National Environmental Management Act, 1998 (Act No. 107 of 1998)
(NEMA) is a systematic process to identify potential positive and negative impacts (biophysical, socio-economic and cultural)
on the environment associated with a proposed activity. It examines management measures to minimise negative and optimise
positive consequences. The aim is to prevent substantial detrimental effects on the environment. According to the NEMA,
sustainable development requires the integration of social, economic and environmental factors in the planning,
implementation and evaluation of decisions to ensure that development serves present and future generations.

In order to give effect to the above, a number of listed activities have been identified, which may have a detrimental effect
on the environment and require authorisation prior to such activities commencing. Three separate listing notices, detailing the
listed activities, are published in GN R983, GN R984 and GN R985 in GG 38282 of 4 December 2014 respectively, promulgated
in terms of Section 24(5) of NEMA. Activities listed in GN R983 and GN R985 requires that a Basic Assessment (BA) be undertaken.
These are generally smaller scale activities or activities where the predicted impacts are generally known and can be easily
managed. Applications subject to GN R984 require that an Environmental Scoping Report (ESR), Environmental Impact
Assessment Report (EIAR) and an Environmental Management Plan (EMP) be compiled.

Regulation 12 of the NEMA Regulations (GN R982 in GG 38282 of 4 December 2014), stipulates that an applicant wishing to
undertake any listed activity must appoint an independent Environmental Assessment Practitioner (EAP) to manage the
application process on behalf of the applicant.

The National Environmental Management: Waste Act

The National Environmental Management: Waste Act, 2008 (Act No. 59 of 2008) (NEM:WA) fundamentally reformed the law
regulating waste management, and for the first time provides a coherent and integrated legislative framework addressing all
the steps in the waste management hierarchy. The objects of the NEM:WA are to protect health, well-being and the
environment by providing reasonable measures for, inter alia, remediating land where contamination presents, or may present,
a significant risk of harm to health or the environment. The objects of the NEM:WA are structured around the steps in the
waste management hierarchy, which is the overall approach that informs waste management in South Africa. The waste
management hierarchy consists of options for waste management during the lifecycle of waste, arranged in descending order
of priority; i.e.: waste avoidance, reduction, re-use, recycling, recovery, treatment, and safe disposal as a last resort.

The NEM:WA provides for a licensing regime specific to waste management activities. It replaces the historical system of
permits issued in terms of the repealed Section 20 of the Environment Conservation Act, 1989 (Act No. 73 of 1989) (ECA). The
NEM:WA waste management categories determine the environmental assessment procedure (which is the equivalent of the
NEMA Regulations’ requirements) required to obtain a licence. Category A activities need a BA as defined in the NEMA
Regulations. A BA is appropriate where the environmental impact of a particular activity is well understood and limited in
scope. Category B activities require a full EIAR in terms of the NEMA regulations. An EIAR is appropriate where the potential
scope and extent of environmental impacts are not well understood, or is likely to be significant.

The National Environmental Management: Air Quality Act

The National Environment Management: Air Quality Act, 2004 (Act No. 39 of 2004) (NEM:AQA), which repealed the Atmospheric
Pollution Prevention Act of 1965, came into effect on 11 September 2005. The objectives of NEM:AQA are to protect the
environment by providing reasonable measures to protect air quality, prevent air pollution and to give effect to Section 24(b)
of the Constitution. NEM:AQA must be read in conjunction with NEMA, which provides framework legislation and establishes an
integrated environmental management system for South Africa.

Within NEM:AQA, the control and management of emissions relates to the listing of activities which requires the issuing of
emission licenses. In terms of Section 22, no person may conduct an activity listed on the national list (or provincial list) without
an atmospheric emission license. In addition, the Minister may in terms of Section 29(1)(a) declare any substance contributing
to air pollution as a priority pollutant. Any industries or industrial sectors which emit these priority pollutants will be required
to implement a Pollution Prevention Plan.

GCS’ employees are well skilled EAPs and can undertake BA and EIA processes in fulfilment of the legislative requirements. The
Environmental Unit aims to provide a cost effective service in this regard and will ensure that the applicant is provided with a
practical and effective EIA and EMP.


2014Beeshoek Iron Ore MineBeeshoek BAR for 1,4 km roadBeeshoek
2014Northam Platinum LimitedBooysendal EIA and EMP Amendment ApplicationBooysendal Mine
2014Gold OneCooke Operations Tailings Backfill Plant: Specialist Studies Peer ReviewCooke Operations
2014QuantumExtension of Provisional Air Emission LicenseBallengeich
2014Modikwa Platinum MineModikwa EMP Performance Assessment and Rehabilitation CalculationModikwa Mine
2014SiVESTMqabe Powerline Specialist ReviewJohannesburg
2014JT RossRinaldo East Industrial Estate EIADurban
2014Royal Haskoning DHVRoyal Haskoning - Cathedral Road Slump EnviroCathedral Peak Road
2013RSK Environment LtdBumbuna Environmental ReviewUK Branch
2013Kangra Coal (Pty) LtdDesign and perming of new coal discard dumpMaquasa East
2013Torrex MiningDesktop Environmental AssessmentVischkuil, Springs
2013Assmang LimitedDwarsrivier Chrome Mine GN704 Exemption ApplicationDwarsrivier Chrome Mine
2013DH Engineering LtdEIA Study for Limulunga-Lukulu RoadWestern Province Zambia
2013DRA SAEnvironmental Hydrogeological Hydrological Legal & Soils
and Wetlands Analysis
Proposed Molo Graphite Mine
2013SiVESTEskom 88kV Powerline Kleveland-DalkeithJohannesburg Environmental Unit
2013Forbes Coal (Pty) Ltd
Forbes Coalfields Calcining PlantCoalfields
2013Platinum Group MetalsMaseve Housing Project: Baseline Environmental AssessmentRustenburg
2013Bondit Right TradingMilky Way Shopping Centre EIADurban
2013Hatch GobaMukulu BFS Amendment ProcessMukulu Mine
2013Sirocco Mining IncOrca Gold Environmental Baseline StudySudan
2013PaperCor MaratekPapercor Maratek NEM:WA Authorisations ProcessJohannesburg
2013Northam Platinum LimitedSalvage Yard Waste Licence Basic AssessmentZondereinde Mine
2013Triplo4Translation of BID documentCulvert Durban


  1. Environmental Authorisations for Listed Activities (420.5 KB)
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