This dissertation comprises of a two-fold analysis in an attempt to answer the main question: how does Section 24G of NEMA impact sustainable development in South Africa? This dissertation analyse current literature on sustainable development and delves into how sustainable development in South Africa is currently understood. The second analysis focusses on the operation of Section 24Gin the current legislative framework, which is contextualised in the current Integrated Environmental Management system and specifically, Environmental Impact Assessments and Social Impact Assessments. Once these two questions have been answered, this dissertation then will proceed to answer how Section 24G of NEMA impacts on this understanding of sustainable development. By encouraging a unique view of sustainable development in South Africa, it is submitted that sustainable development should be used as a mechanism to uplift the poor in South Africa and a means to obtain a better environment for those who have been negatively impacted by Apartheid.
This study finds that Section 24G of NEMA has a cumulative negative effect on sustainable development in South Africa and is open to abuse by developers. The abuse referred to, detracts from the effectiveness of Section 24G and renders the section as a toothless paper tiger and mere rubber stamp. The recently promulgated 2017 Regulations as discussed below, will indicate that, while a positive step in the right direction, these regulations do not go to the heart of how development should occur in South Africa.
Mini Dissertation (LLM)--University of Pretoria, 2019.