An evaluation by Genesis Analytics and Digby Wells Environmental of environmental governance in mining was endorsed by the Cabinet on 15 February 2017. The evaluation assessed the relevance and effectiveness of environmental legislation in mining and its implementation.
The Implementation Evaluation of Environmental Governance in Mining found that while the legislative framework should have promoted good governance in mining, it did not work in practice. Inadequate implementation and enforcement seriously compromised the ability to ensure environmental sustainability.
During the evaluation, laws and regulations governing environmental governance in mining were revised. The intention was to create a more harmonious framework for the environmental regulation of the mining industry.
In many ways these changes aligned with the recommendations made during the evaluation, but the full effect has yet to be determined. This confirmed the relevance of the findings of the evaluation and provided evidence to continue to support initiatives already underway to improve the environmental governance framework and its implementation.
Genesis and Digby Wells worked closely with the Department of Environmental Affairs to develop utility-oriented recommendations to overcome the shortcomings of the framework. The evaluation’s recommendations were translated into a departmental implementation plan that will lead to the enactment of the recommendations.
The evaluation report, implementation plan and management response have been endorsed by the Cabinet and will inform the future of the environmental governance framework in the mining sector.