Both the DMR and Limpopo Provincial Government through the Department of Economic Development, Environment and Tourism (LEDET) granted the amendment of the environmental authorisation in terms of the National Environmental Management Act (NEMA) and the Environmental Impact Assessment Regulations (2014).
The amendment entailed transferring the holder of the environmental authorisation from Coal of Africa to Baobab Mining and Exploration, the legal operating entity of the Makhado project.
The departments have also granted an extension of the validity period of the environmental authorisation, extending the commencement period for an additional five years.
The amendment ensures the alignment of the ownership of the full suite of regulatory authorisations for Makhado within the appropriate vehicle.
The Environmental Impact Assessment Regulations (2014) allow for the appeal of the above mentioned authorisations by any stakeholder. Any such appeal will immediately suspend the authorisation. If this takes place, the company will deal with the regulatory authorities in this regard.
David Brown, CEO comments: “The decision by the DMR and LEDET, and is a confirmation of the government’s commitment to drive socio-economic development, not only in our area of operation, but also the broader Limpopo Province.”
“We continue to engage the Department of Water and Sanitation in respect of the processing of the appeal against the Water Use Licence for the Makhado project and have commenced with the implementation of our Social and Labour Plan at Makhado, to ensure that our communities develop the necessary skills to access the opportunities offered within the project.”
The environmental authorisation for the Makhado project was granted to Coal of Africa in August 2013 by LEDET, requiring that activities within the authorisation commence within a three year period.