Western Cape leads the way with Environmental Impact Assessments with the highest number of EAPASA registered officials in South Africa
The Western Cape Government is committed to economic development that is in balance with ecological sustainability. To that end we are focused on improving the environmental impact assessment (EIA) processes needed for new developments. EIAs are often part of the legislative requirements for new developments, and if not managed carefully, can add significantly to timelines and development costs, Anton Bredell, Western Cape MEC of Local Government, Environmental Affairs and Development Planning said.
Bredell was responding to the Section 24H Regulations promulgated in terms of the National Environmental Management Act, 1999 (Act No. 107 of 1998) (NEMA) which came into effect on 8 August 2022. Section 24H specifies the roles and responsibilities of consultants and officials in terms of EIAs. It provides, amongst other things, for the person to have certain core competencies, for ethical and professional conduct, and for continuous professional development.
From 8 August 2022, only a Registered Environmental Assessment Practitioner (Registered EAP), may investigate, assess, and prepare EIA reports and documents.
“Because we support an enabling business environment, the Western Cape Department of Environmental Affairs and Development Planning (DEA&DP) has ensured that all officials working with EIA approvals are registered at the Environmental Assessment Practitioners Association of South Africa (EAPASA). Also, I am proud to say, DEA&DP currently has the highest number of EAPASA registered officials in South Africa. This will ensure we continue to improve on EIA administration services to Western Cape residents, consultants, and applicants,” Bredell said.
Bredell said that when well-managed, the cost of an EIA on average should amount to less than 2% of overall development costs.
Source: Government of South Africa