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2014 NEWS AND PRESS RELEASES

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PLANNING POVERTY: NEW REPORT UNPACKS NDP THROUGH SOCIO-ENVIRONMENTAL LENS

Durban, South Africa, 15 December 2014 – The rhetoric of big infrastructure projects promoting development, employment and economic growth is at the heart of government's National Development Plan (NDP). Planning Poverty: The NDP and the infrastructure of destruction released by groundWork, examines this development model and argues that these plans instead represent an assault on people and their environments in the interests of corporate profit. Far from eliminating poverty and reducing inequality as it claims, the NDP will reproduce poverty and inequality.

News on the dig-out port has been scarce since July when it was announced that phase 1 of construction will not meet the expected completion date of 2020. Transnet announced that as a result of technical issues, the start date would be delayed to a date yet to be announced. Other factors for the delay include financial constraints and legislative processes, however further details are unknown.

The new port is part of the Strategic Infrastructure Project (SIP) 2, which is the Durban-Free State-Gauteng logistics and industrial corridor. Costs for the projected have continued to escalate and estimates are projected to between R75 billion and R100 billion. The project in its entirety could take between 20 to 40 years to be fully completed.

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Stop green, climate jobs being incinerated - join us and sign the petition!

Hundreds of waste reclaimers and small recyclers in South Africa stand to lose their climate-friendly jobs and be forced to return to a life of poverty. In a country with an over 45% unemployment rate, waste recycling becomes a source of income for those who would otherwise be impoverished.

Diverting valuable waste, such as plastic, cardboard, tin, glass and organics off the landfill to be recycled, also mitigates climate change by stopping the creation of methane through decomposition and having to create new landfills.

This will go up in smoke if the Department of Environmental Affairs agrees to private company Enviroserve's proposed construction of a waste-to-energy incinerator to take in general waste in Kempton Park, Gauteng.

In the short term, incinerators burn this waste to create energy, however, its social and environmental impacts outweigh the minimal energy it creates. Toxic air pollution and ash landfills are the main by-products produced by incinerators. This impacts on people's health in general and contaminates soil and groundwater with poisonous chemicals and heavy metals.  

In the long term, if materials are not being recycled, the extraction of more raw materials will take place through industrial practices that are destructive and promote climate change.

Take action now by clicking here to sign the petition calling on the Department of Environmental Affairs to promote green, climate jobs and not pass this waste-to-energy incinerator. Together with hard copy petitions signed by waste reclaimers across the country, the online petition will be sent to the Minister of the Department of Environmental Affairs in making sure that they do not approve the incinerator.

WASTE PICKERS TO TAKE TO THE STREETS

Pietermaritzburg, South Africa - 10th December 2014 - Approximately 500 waste recyclers or pickers will take to the streets of Pietermaritzburg, South Africa, this week Thursday, December 11th, 2014, after three years of waiting for the construction of a materials recycling facility (MRF) at the New England Road landfill site. This march is targeted at the provincial Department of Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs (CoGTA) which has neglected its oversight responsibility over the local and district municipalities in Pietermaritzburg, and also ignored the responsibilities of the two municipalities within this agreement.

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ANGLO AMERICAN’S NEGATIVE INFLUENCE ON CLIMATE POLICIES EXPOSED

Durban, South Africa & Lima, Peru, 8 December 2014 – Multinational corporations such as Anglo American undermine crucial climate policies and promote false solutions, which allow them to profit from the climate crisis, according to a new report released today [8 December] during the UN climate talks.

The activities of mining giant Anglo American are examined in the new report, which focuses on one of the world's biggest open-pit coal mine El Cerrejón, in La Guajira, Colombia. British-South African company Anglo American is one of its three shareholders.

Anglo American continues to expand its climate-wrecking dirty business model while using green funds, offset mechanisms and dodgy techno-fixes to present a green image, according to the report 'Anglo American's dirty energy lobby and its false climate solutions' which was released at the 'Peoples Summit against Climate Change' in Lima.

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REMEMBERING BHOPAL, 30 YEARS LATER

Durban, South Africa, 3rd December 2014 – In the early hours of this morning we met at the Indian Consulate in Durban to commemorate the lives lost and the injuries sustained from the gas leak at the Dow Chemicals plant in Bhopal, India which took place three decades ago. It was an intimate candlelit gathering of 15 people, with people sharing their own experiences of visits to the site and the town of Bhopal.

We acknowledged that despite 30 years having passed by, people in Bhopal continue to live daily with the pain of having lost thousands of to the disaster as well as continuing to bear the impact of an environment contaminated with dangerous heavy metals. At two minutes past midnight we held a minute of silence and once outside the building let off a siren in an act of remembrance and solidarity with those continuing to challenge both the government and company.

Our call is for the Indian government to take the company to court and to put the people's health needs first. A letter with a list of demands was emailed to the Consul General on Tuesday afternoon and stuck on their door early this morning.

Let us not allow another decade to pass without real action being taken for the people of Bhopal.

NO MORE BHOPALS! 30 YEARS ON, THOUSANDS DEAD AND COUNTING - Midnight candlelit vigil to be held at Indian Consulate

Durban, South Africa, 2nd December 2014 – At two minutes past midnight tomorrow, 30 years would have passed since the tragic disaster at the Dow Chemical plant in Bhopal, India where a gas leak resulted in 7 000 deaths immediately following the incident, 25 000 more dead in the following years and 150 000 are today severely disabled by the long term effects of the gas and/or by the drinking water contaminated with toxic waste that leached from the factory site.

Formerly known as Union Carbide, the American-based Dow Chemicals plant in Bhopal, India leaked about 30 tons of deadly gases such as methyl isocynate in the early hours of 3rd December 1984, killing thousands as they slept. This, as a result of all six safety systems being dysfunctional, which the company itself admitted to not being proven and tested technology in the first place.

Five years later, the company and the Indian government came to a settlement, which compensated survivors suffering from chronic diseases and/or debilitating physical injuries a once off payment of US $500. The anniversary comes just months after the company’s CEO, Warren Anderson, died at the age of 92 in September.

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SHALE GAS INCREASING THREAT TO CLIMATE, ENVIRONMENT, COMMUNITIES WORLDWIDE

Brussels, Belgium, 1 December 2014 - As world climate talks open in Peru today, new research shows how fracking is likely to further accelerate climate change, destroy water sources and infringe on communities' rights worldwide unless urgent action is taken to stop the 'dash-for-gas'.

The report, from Friends of the Earth Europe, maps the expansion of the shale gas industry outside Europe and North America with examples of 11 key countries on three continents. It finds that multinational oil and gas companies such as Total, Shell and Chevron are moving into increasingly vulnerable countries in Latin America, Africa and Asia where the ecosystems, communities and authorities are even less unable to cope with the impacts of extraction.

Countries such as Mexico, China, Argentina and South Africa, are in earthquake-prone or water-scarce regions and are most exposed to the impacts of climate change. The pursuit of fracking in these countries is likely to exacerbate the climate, environment, social and human rights problems they already face.

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CALL TO ACTION TO REJECT REDD+ AND EXTRACTIVE INDUSTRIES AND TO CONFRONT CAPITALISM AND DEFEND LIFE AND TERRITORIES

COP20, Lima, December 2014 - On the occasion of the UN climate change negotiations in Lima, Peru – known as COP20 – we warn that rejecting REDD+ and ‘environmental services’, under the ‘green economy’ umbrella, is a central part of our struggle against capitalism and extractive industries and in the defense of territories, life and Mother Earth.

The United Nations’ climate agreements have failed to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. In fact, the mechanisms and policies that have emerged from these agreements – including REDD+ – have allowed for the continuation, legitimization and intensification of destructive activities such as mining, oil, gas and carbon extraction, tree monocultures and agroindustry, among others.

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VICTORY FOR VAAL COMMUNITIES AS THE SUPREME COURT OF APPEAL ORDERS ARCELORMITTAL TO RELEASE ENVIRONMENTAL RECORDS

Bloemfontein, South Africa, 26 November 2014 – In a hard-hitting judgement handed down today, the Supreme Court of Appeal ordered ArcelorMittal South Africa Ltd (AMSA) to release various environmental records to the Vaal Environmental Justice Organisation (VEJA) [1], and to pay the communities' costs.

The Supreme Court of Appeal (SCA) refused AMSA's appeal against the September 2013 High Court judgement ordering AMSA to release its environmental “Master Plan”, as well as documents relating to its Vaal Disposal Site, and unanimously upheld the High Court judgement. This means that AMSA must make the documents available to VEJA by 17 December 2014.

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PINOCCHIO AWARDS WINNERS: SHELL, GDF SUEZ AND SAMSUNG

Paris, France, 19 November 2014 – After the launch of the public vote on October 9th, Friends of the Earth France, in partnership with Peuples Solidaires – ActionAid France and CRID (Research and Information Centre for Development), put an end to the suspense at the Pinocchio Awards prize-giving ceremony this evening at La Java (Paris) and announced 2014’s big winners: Shell, GDF Suez and Samsung (1).

This year, a new record was set for the number of votes: over 61,000 votes in total, which demonstrates citizens’ growing outrage about the severe impact multinational corporations’ activities are having on society and the environment.

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SOUTH AFRICA: LITTLE INTENTION OF FIGHTING THE CLIMATE BATTLE - Environmental Affairs Climate Change Dialogue begins as world remembers late anti-Shell activist, Ken Saro-Wiwa

Johannesburg & Graaf Reinet, South Africa, 10 November 2015 – With Royal Dutch Shell having been granted the largest concession to frack for shale gas in South Africa, today is the 19th year the world commemorates Nigerian State’s assassination of Ken Saro-Wiwa and eight other environmental justice activists fighting Shell in the Niger Delta. This, a sad irony as the Department of Minerals Resources (DMR) has recently announced its push for fracking as early as 2016, despite the lack of sufficient research on the social and environmental impacts.

Contradictions continue to abound between South Africa’s energy policy and its climate commitments. Today, the Minister of Department of Environmental Affairs (DEA) opens the National Climate Change Dialogue in Johannesburg. On top of Eskom’s heavy reliance on CO2 emitting coal, the Petroleum Agency of South Africa is supporting the DMR in turbo-charging the country’s move to fracking. A credible response to climate change requires that all exploration for oil, gas and coal stops now as existing reserves contain as much as seven times the ‘carbon budget’ associated with the agreed commitment to limit warming to 2°C.

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VAAL ENVIRONMENTAL JUSTICE ALLIANCE’S STRUGGLE AGAINST ARCELORMITTAL SA GOES TO BLOEMFONTEIN

Bloemfontein, South Africa, 5 November 2014 – Tomorrow, the Supreme Court of Appeal in Bloemfontein will hear why ArcelorMittal South Africa Ltd believes that it should not have to release records regarding the environmental impacts of its operations at Vanderbijlpark and Vereeniging to community-based organisation the Vaal Environmental Justice Alliance(VEJA.

In September 2013, the South Gauteng High Court ordered Amsa to hand over records of Amsa’s Environmental Master Plan and Vaal Disposal Site to VEJA. Amsa is now appealing that High Court decision in the Supreme Court of Appeal.

VEJA’s first request for information under the Promotion of Access to Information Act, 2000, made in 2011, was for a copy of Amsa’s Environmental Master Plan, compiled by the company in 2002, and setting out how it would rehabilitate pollution at its Vanderbijlpark site. In February 2012, VEJA also requested records relating to the closure and rehabilitation of the company’s Vaal Disposal Site, situated in Vereeniging, after the company had illegally dumped hazardous waste here.

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GOVERNMENTS GET ‘C’ GRADE SINCE MERCURY TREATY APPROVED - Governments globally must do more to curb supply and trade of mercury

Durban, South Africa, 30 October 2014 — Governments around the world are not doing enough to reduce the global supply and trade of mercury, according to a new report released today by the Zero Mercury Working Group (‘Zero Mercury’). But they are showing progress in other areas such as developing plans to reduce mercury use in small-scale gold mining and phasing out mercury-based chlorine plants.

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AIR QUALITY, COMMUNITY PEOPLE ADDRESS PARLIAMENT

Cape Town, South Africa, 27 October 2014 – Tomorrow in parliament, representatives from five environmental justice organisations will meet with the Portfolio Committee on Environmental Affairs to discuss groundWork’s recent report on the failing governance and dangerous state of air quality in the country.

Last month, groundWork and its legal and community-based partners released Slow Poison: Air pollution, public health and failing governance, a report highlighting the little to no gains made in fighting poor air quality in South Africa and how we have got to this point. The Department of Environmental Affairs (the Department) has recognised the legitimacy of the report’s findings at their annual Air Quality Lekgotla in Durban between 6 and 8 October 2014. The parliamentary hearing has been called for in the wake of the public interest in the report, which was extensively covered by the media.

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ZERO WASTE APPROACH IS A MUST IN SOUTH AFRICA

Barcelona, Spain, 14 October 2014 – Un-recycled waste is a common sight and a sign of an inefficient governance and production system, which adds to the global burden of climate change.  A zero waste approach to the management of resources is what society needs. This week, waste recyclers or pickers in Spain will be imparting their experience of zero waste initiatives with their South African counterparts. According to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change’s (IPCC) Fourth Assessment report, “Waste minimization, recycling, and re-use represent an important and increasing potential for indirect reduction of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions through the conservation or raw materials, improved energy and resource efficiency and fossil fuel avoidance.”

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RECLAIM POWER WEEK

10 October 2014 – Today is the first day of action in the Reclaim Power Week of Action, with a focus on the World Bank and the role of international financial institutions in fuelling the climate crisis. There are many actions planned under the #ReclaimPower banner and even more as a part of the broader collaboration of #WorldvsBank.

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BENEFITS OUTWEIGH COSTS WHEN REDUCING OUTDOOR EMISSIONS

Durban, KwaZulu Natal, 09 October 2014 – “As a global trend, the energy generating sector dwarfs the costs of indoor air pollution.” Yesterday, Professor Peter Orris of the University of Illinois, closed this year’s Air Quality Lekgotla [1] held by the Department of Environmental Affairs, with this statement, putting Eskom and industries like Sasol under the spotlight.

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DEA TO QUANTIFY COST OF AIR POLLUTION FOR FIRST TIME - Annual Air Quality Lekgotla to close with new findings

Durban, KwaZulu Natal, 07 October 2014 – Tomorrow, the Department of Environmental Affairs chaired by National Air Quality Officer Dr. Thuli Mdluli will outline the methodology to undertake a cost-benefit analysis for air quality in South Africa. This will mean that for the first time in South Africa we will begin to understand the costs of air pollution to society and the benefits of bringing heavily polluted areas and industry into compliance. 

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Civil society, on the streets and at teach-ins, demands an end to World Bank biases

Durban, Johannesburg and Cape Town, South Africa and Washington, DC, 06 October 2014 - On Friday, October 10, as the World Bank's Annual Meeting starts in Washington, civil society groups and Indigenous People's organisations across the world will campaign against the Bank. Our Land, Our Business, endorsed by over 235 organisations, will be staging 'creative resistance' events in Washington and nine other cities around the world. The Washington event is drawing support from a wide range of activist communities, including Occupy groups and representatives of affected communities from Kenya, Mali, and Ethiopia.

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HOSPITALS TO MITIGATE CLIMATE CHANGE

Cape Town, Western Cape, 30 September 2014 – The health sector’s mandate is to prevent and cure disease, yet the delivery of health care services, most notably in hospitals, often inadvertently contributes to the problem. The Western Cape Department of Health has, with the facilitation of NGO groundWork, recognized this problem and has signed onto an international initiative called the Global Green and Healthy Hospitals (GGHH) [2], which aims to reduce the ecological footprint of healthcare operations to promote public health through a cleaner and safer environment. 

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UN CLIMATE SUMMIT: A FOOL'S PARADISE

New York City, USA, 23 September 2014 – Commenting on statements made at the Climate Summit in New York City today, Friends of the Earth International Climate Justice and Energy coordinator Dipti Bhatnagar said that "the Climate Summit was a fool's paradise out of touch with the climate emergency we are facing".

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RIGHTS ORGANISATIONS PLAN TO JOIN SASOL AND NATREF POLLUTION LITIGATION

Cape Town and Pietermaritzburg 17th September 2014 - Two groups of environmental rights organisations have given notice of their intention to seek consent to be admitted as friends of the court (amici curiae) in court proceedings launched in May 2014 by Sasol and the National Petroleum Refiners of SA Ltd (Natref) against the government.

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THE TALE OF BAD AIR QUALITY IN SOUTH AFRICA

Johannesburg and Durban, South Africa, 15 September 2014 – Breathing is the most basic process of life. Slow Poison: Air pollution, public and failing governance, is a new report published by environmental justice organization, groundWork, Centre for Environmental Rights and community partners on the fatal state of air quality in South Africa. 

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FRACKING: LEGISLATIVE UNCERTAINTY UNDERMINES PUBLIC CONSULTATION ANNOUNCEMENT

George, Western Cape, 8 September 2014 – As of last week, the commencement of changes to the National Environmental Management Act (NEMA) may have left the Minister of Mineral Resources without authority to make environmental regulations for fracking.

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DUTCH ANTI-FRACKING ACTIVISTS TO PICKET AT SHELL HEADQUARTERS

Cape Town, South Africa, 21 August 2014 – Activists resisting shale gas fracking in the Karoo and globally will today picket outside Shell's offices at 10 Rua Vasco Da Gama

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DUTCH ANTI-FRACKING ACTIVISTS VISIT THE KAROO
Shell to be held accountable in The Netherlands for its plans to frack in South Africa

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BUILDING ACTIVISM: GROUNDWORK’S FIRST ENVIRONMENTAL JUSTICE SCHOOL STARTS

Pietermaritzburg, South Africa, 21 July 2014 – Today marks the start of groundWork’s two week long Environmental Justice School, focusing on building activism through theory and praxis for those living in communities experiencing environmental injustices.

Last night, 18 students from across Southern Africa were welcomed by groundWork and from today they will be engaged on issues of development and power, environmental legislation in South Africa and campaigning in areas of energy, air, water, land and food. With mentorship from groundWork staff, by the end of the school, students are to have mapped out a course of action to use their newly acquired knowledge to become more active in their communities.

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HONEST ACCOUNTS? THE REAL CAUSES OF GLOBAL POVERTY

United Kingdom, 15 July 2014 - The UK's international aid budget is under attack from those who say that during a time of austerity, our generosity to poorer parts of the world is something we can no longer afford. This is a dishonest dialogue and reinforces in the mind of the public that Africa is a problem that costs us money. It hides the truth: that we take much more than we give.

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ESKOM’S COAL IS A KILLER, NEW STUDY FINDS

eMalahleni, Highveld, South Africa, 3 July 2014 – While Eskom awaits decisions from the Department of Environmental Affairs (DEA) on its applications for postponement (in many cases, effectively exemption) to meet minimum emission standards for its coal-fired power stations, a new study commissioned by NGO groundWork reveals that while some of the country benefits from Eskom produced electricity, it’s the health and lives of people in the Highveld that are carrying the disease burden of the energy utility’s pollution.

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MSUNDUZI MUNICIPALITY PUTS JOB CREATION PROJECT ON BACK-BURNER

Pietermartizburg, KwaZulu Natal, 17 June 2014 – Umgungundlovu District Municipality was, in 2011, awarded R21 million by the Department of Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs (CoGTA) for implementation of a waste recycling project that would create 200 permanent, sustainable jobs. Due to the local municipality not signing off on the construction of the formal recycling centre, the cooperative of waste reclaimers or pickers already working at the New England Road landfill site have been kept waiting for three years.

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UN TREATY URGENTLY NEEDED FOR HUMAN RIGHTS DEFENDERS, SAYS NEW REPORT

Geneva, Switzerland, 11 June 2014 – Defenders of the environment often face terrible consequences for their actions, suffering rights violations and violence, according to a new report by Friends of the Earth International to be released on June 26, during the 26th Session of the United Nations Human Rights Council (UNHRC) on June 10-27.

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DURBAN ACTIVIST WINS INTERNATIONAL ENVIRONMENTAL PRIZE

Pietermaritzburg, Monday 28 April 2014 - Durban’s tireless campaigner, Desmond D’Sa, is one of six grassroots environmental activists from around the world who has been chosen by the US based Goldman Environmental Foundation to be awarded the prestigious 2014 Goldman Environmental Prize.

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BOBBY PEEK, DIRECTOR OF GROUNDWORK, RECEIVES HONORARY DOCTORATE

Durban, 16th April - Bobby Peek, Director of groundWork (Friends of the Earth South Africa) todayreceived an Honorary Doctorate from the Durban University of Technology (DUT). Chairperson of groundWork's Board of Trustees, Joy Kistnasamy, explains why he is so richly deserving of the prestigious award.

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ESKOM’S APPLICATION FOR INCREASED AIR POLLUTION FROM ITS KRIEL POWER STATION REFUSED

Johannesburg, Sunday, 23 March 2014 – Earthlife Africa Johannesburg (ELA) [1], groundWork [2] and the Centre for Environmental Rights (CER) [3] welcome the decision of Nkangala District Municipality (NDM) largely to refuse Eskom’s request to relax its atmospheric emission licence for its Kriel Power Station in Mpumalanga.

Eskom applied to amend the licence in November 2013, notwithstanding that the MEC for the Mpumalanga Department of Economic Development and Tourism had, in May 2013, dismissed various appeal grounds Eskom had raised in relation to the licence.

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DURBAN COMMUNITIES TAKE TO STREETS AGAINST PORT EXPANSION PROJECT

Durban, South Africa, 20 March 2014 – The Durban port development plans have ignored significant social and environmental considerations in favour of the kind of neo-liberal economic policy that will not benefit these communities but rather governments and corporations invested in this project.

Next Saturday 29th March 2014, communities from across Durban will gather and protest in united effort to again publicly express their concerns and demand developmentthat promotes socio-economic and environmental solutions that benefit them.

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WHO’S THE BOSS? HOW ESKOM PLANS TO DUPE SOUTH AFRICA

Johannesburg, Gauteng, 12 February 2014 – Environmental governance in South Africa is cracking at the seams. If government permits Eskom to exceed air pollution standards at 14 of their coal-fired power stations, it would put the nail in the coffin of air quality legislation that protects people’s health.

Today marks the closure for the public to submit comments on Eskom’s applications for postponement from compliance with air quality standards for their coal-fired power stations. These standards require Eskom to meet existing plant standards by 1 April 2015, and stricter new plant standards by 1 April 2020.

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FRACKING: ANOTHER CHIP AT OUR DEMOCRACY - Statement by anti-fracking coalition

Karoo, 09 February 2014 – Minister of Mineral Resources Susan Shabangu’s comments that government is going to be moving ahead “decisively” on shale gas exploration in the Karoo is in stark contrast to what people in the Karoo want. As part of their constitutional rights, they are asking for agrarian transformation; employment and decent jobs; decent levels of affordable basic services and infrastructure; and at minimum, the basic goods of human life, starting with the most basic levels of goods like nutritious food, and safe and comfortable accommodation. This is what is needed for the Karoo, not a plan for fracking that is extractive and will leave the Karoo with a toxic environmental and social legacy.

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PIETERMARITZBURG IGNORES CRITICAL KZN ENVIRONMENTAL LEGISLATION PROTECTING PEOPLE’S HEALTH

Flying in the face of the long-standing KwaZulu Natal medical waste incineration ban issued by the provincial Department of Health after the last incinerator in KZN failed, the national Department of Environmental Affairs has just issued a waste management licence to a company called Sirela Trading for its proposal to build and operate a medical waste incinerator in Mkondeni, Pietermaritzburg.

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WORLD CANCER DAY: AIR POLLUTION IS CANCER-CAUSING

Pietermaritzburg, KwaZulu Natal, 04 February 2014 – In October last year, the World Health Organisation (WHO) announced that outdoor air pollution causes cancer, a critical finding for South Africa on World Cancer Day today considering we still hold a notorious air pollution track record.

What the findings of the WHO’s International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) means for all South Africans, but in particular those living in heavily polluted areas such as south Durban, the Highveld and the Vaal, is that Eskom’s application to be exempt from pollution standards and continued reliance on coal will continue to cause an increase in lung cancer, bladder cancer, heart disease and respiratory problems in South African people.

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GLOBAL NGOS WELCOME WHO SUPPORT FOR NEW MERCURY CONVENTION

Geneva, Switzerland, 24 January 2014 – Yesterday, NGOs including groundWork [1], member of Zero Mercury Working Group (ZMWG) [2], welcomed the adoption of a new resolution by the World Health Organization’s executive board (EB), agreeing to both endorse and lend support for countries to address the health-related aspects of the new Minamata Convention on Mercury. They also applauded WHO for encouraging governments to “promptly sign, ratify and implement” the Convention.

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SA COMMUNITIES MEET TO DISCUSS ISSUES OF JUSTICE IN COUNTRY

Pietermaritzburg, KwaZulu Natal, 23 January 2014 – Communities from across South Africa facing various types of environmental pollution daily will next week present their struggles and engage with local Pietermaritzburg justice-based NGOs at a meeting hosted by groundWork.

“Popping the bubble: Engaging with Environmental Justice struggles and resistance beyond our own localities” will feature communities resisting environmental injustices as a result of poor service delivery as well as rampant and uncontrolled pollution from the likes of the mining, petrochemical and energy industry – such as Sasol, Eskom and Engen – and challenging for their right to have decent and recognised work as people working on the very many waste dumpsites throughout South Africa.

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ESKOM EXPOSED AS ONE OF WORST CORPORATIONS AT PARALLEL TO WEF

Johannesburg and Pietermaritzburg, 22 January 2014 – Today marks the start of the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland where corporates and government officials globally – such as the seven South African cabinet ministers – get to “reshape the world” [1], while in the meantime the majority are unjustly treated by them, socially, economically or environmentally.

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