#WaterWatch

Elandsfontein aquifer under threat from mining company

A proposed mine in a bio-diverse area above the aquifer on the fence of the West Coast National Park has raised alarm bells with environmental groups.

Today they launched an urgent interdict application in the Cape Town High Court against the mining company application against Kropz Elandsfontein (Pty) Ltd (Kropz) to stop the company from continuing to unlawfully dewater and recharge the Elandsfontein aquifer.

Lawyer Walter Anderson, acting for the West Coast Environmental Protection Association, spoke to CapeTalk's John Maytham about the concerns.

It would require millions of litres of water supplied by the municipality, per day, to operate.

Walter Anderson, lawyer at Cullinans and Associates

Though we are not against mining, this would be the poster child for where mining would not necessarily be justifiable.

Walter Anderson, lawyer at Cullinans and Associates

They have appealed the company's water use licence.

In terms of the National Water Act, when such an appeal is lodged, the water use licence is automatically suspended...because water is very important and it is in the public trust, and the department is the custodian of water - so managing it for the people. It does not own it.

Walter Anderson, lawyer at Cullinans and Associates

He says the interdict was launched because the mining company continued to dewater the aquifer, despite this appeal. The company has been flouting the law, he says.

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