Coal mines have polluted 90% of groundwater in the Highveld region in Mpumalanga alone.
Deputy water and sanitation minister, David Mahlobo talks to Africa Melane on 702 Breakfast.
Mahlobo says even though mines play an important role in South Africa's economy, there are a lot of unintended consequences brought by that including the pollution of the water system.
Coal mines need to improve water management because if the water management methodology is not up to standard, many problems are caused.— David Mahlobo, Deputy Minister - Human Settlements, Water and Sanitation Department
He says the worst type of pollution is acid mine drainage and if it gets into the groundwater system, it will pollute the water even after the mine closes down.
We need to increase regulations to ensure that polluters pay. The government needs to work with these companies so that there is responsible mining.— David Mahlobo, Deputy minister - Human Settlements, Water and Sanitation Department
Listen below to the full interview: