Legalbrief Today: Fracking concerns under scrutiny

Published in Legalbrief Environmental
7 February 2012
Issue No: 0247

A civil society group has succeeded in forcing government to release details of the fracking task team appointed last year to investigate this controversial practice, potentially to be used in the ecologically sensitive Karoo, writes Legalbrief.

Mineral Resources Director-General Thibedi Ramontja filed an affidavit in the North Gauteng High Court last week in response to an application brought under the Promotion of Access to Information Act (Paia) by anti-fracking coalition Treasure the Karoo Action Group (TKAG), according to a Cape Argus report. In one of several e-mails attached to the affidavit, the Department of Water Affairs warns that there are ‘serious concerns’ about hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, in the Karoo. The report notes Dr Eddy van Wyk of the Water Affairs Department’s hydrological services says: ‘I would like to state this firmly: there are serious issues for the Department of Water Affairs (DWA) as to hydrofracking in the Karoo environment – especially with reference to DWA’s Water Act, section 21 (f). We should now start with negotiations on the way forward.’

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Fracking Concerns Under Scrutiny