Gauteng Business News

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ENVIRONMENT: Fracking Goes to Parliament


Recent Gauteng Business News

Matatiele was recently the site for revolutionary change, as the community mobilized to resist against corporate giants planning to frack in this area and over 6 000 000 kms2 across the rest of the country. The fracking firms include Rhino Oil and Gas, Afro Energy, Sungu Sungu and Motuoane Energy.

The Frack Free Fest which took place in October and was attended by 120 delegates, including NGOs, community members and leadership. An invitation was extended to members of parliament to join this gathering and engage with community members who stand to lose their land from the proposed fracking.

Cheryllyn Dudley, representing ten political parties, attended to hear the call for action and joined the community to understand some of their concerns around fracking to extract gas from shale or coal. Concerns aired included concerns over environmental degradations, water contamination, loss of land, agricultural and the communities’ livelihood. The concerns were documented in the Matatiele Manifesto.

As a result of this community gathering in Matatiele parliament has agreed to host a debate on fracking. Frack Free SA [1] has been invited to join the National Assembly debate in parliament, set to take place on Thursday, 1 December 2016, at 2:00 pm. groundWork and Frack Free SA were one of the many that were invited to join in on this discussion. Various members of society will gather with our country’s leaders in a hope to create environmentally sustainable futures and influence policy on fracking.

groundWork [2] and Frack Free SA addressed a letter to the Portfolio Committees of Water and Sanitation; Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries; Environment; Health; Mineral Resources; Economic Development; Energy; and Science and Technology calling for a joint meeting with these committees in the first quarter of 2017.

[1] Frack Free SA is a coalition of concerned individuals opposing fracking on ecological, health, social, and economic grounds. They are against the use of Fracking or other techniques to recover Unconventional Gas.
[2] groundWork is an environmental justice organisation working with community people from around South Africa, and increasingly Southern Africa, on environmental justice and human rights issues focusing on Coal, Climate and Energy Justice, Waste and Environmental Health. groundWork is the South African member of Health Care Without Harm and Friends of the Earth International.

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