Title: Chapter 4 part 8 of the National Environmental Management: Waste Act 59 of 2008 (NEMWA)
Government Notice: n/a
Date of commencement: 2 May 2014

In terms of section 36(5) of NEMWA, an owner of land that is significantly contaminated, or a person who undertakes an activity that caused the land to be significantly contaminated, must notify the Minister and MEC of Environmental Affairs of that contamination as soon as that person becomes aware thereof. The Minister of Environmental Affairs can also identify an area as an investigation area if the Minister suspects that land may be contaminated. Subsequently the Minister can order that a site assessment be conducted in the investigation area of which the report must be submitted to the Minister. The Framework for the Management of Contaminated Land was compiled in support of Part 8 of the National Environmental Management: Waste Act (Act 59 of 2008) in order to provide ‘norms and standards’ for enabling the identification and registration of contaminated sites, to provide a risk‐based decision support protocol for assessing sites, and to offer a set of guidelines for the submission of site assessment reports.

“So what” for my operation?
If an area under your operation’s control significantly contaminated, you are legally obliged to notify the Minister of Environmental Affairs of such contamination. If this is not done, this constitutes an offence punishable by a fine of maximum R5 million or imprisonment of maximum 5 years, or both, in addition to any penalty imposed under the National Environmental Management Act 107 of 1998.

What can Shangoni do for my operation?
To establish whether land is significantly contaminated, a contaminated land investigation has to be conducted according to the National Norms and Standards for the Remediation of Contaminated Land and soil Quality (NEMWA, Act 59 of 2008). Shangoni consists of qualified and experienced scientists and environmental project managers to provide our clients with contaminated land investigations from Phase 1 through to Phase 3 assessments.