The Minister of Forestry, Fisheries and the Environment has amended the transitional arrangements in the National Environmental Management Act (NEMA) Financial Provisioning Regulations, 2015 (FP Regs), for the fourth time.
Holders of rights and/or permits operating in the mining industry (who applied for them before 20 November 2015) now have until 19 September 2023 to transition to the NEMA regime. This extension from 19 June 2022 occurs when the long-awaited National Environmental Management Amendment Bill [B14F-17], dubbed NEMLAA4 could be enacted at any time and will likely set the scene for the finalisation of the Third Draft FP Regulations, 2021, which are intended to completely replace the existing set of FP Regs.
The market remains desperate to understand what the final set of replacement regulations will entail. This development, although positive from certain lenses perpetuates desperation for policy certainty and is a blow to South Africa's climate change commitments placing the country at risk of meeting its 2030 and 2050 goals.
Written by Garyn Rapson, Partner at Webber Wentzel