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In a series of government notices published in July, the South African Minister of Environment, Forestry and Fisheries, Barbara Creecy, called for public input as part of the public consultation process on the amendment of procedures to be followed in applying for, or deciding on, environmental authorisation applications for large scale wind and solar PV activities.

These are also related to the identification of geographical areas of strategic importance for the development of electricity transmission and distribution infrastructure, large-scale wind and solar PV energy facilities and strategic gas transmission pipeline infrastructure.

As such public comment on the geographical areas identified as Renewable Energy Development Zones (REDZ) for wind and solar, and required environmental authorisation processes has been extended to 4 September 2020.

The Department has also extended the comment period for the government notices related to the REDZ programme on 17 and 31 July 2020. 

The Department explained that the areas of strategic importance for energy development were determined through three Strategic Environmental Assessments undertaken between 2016 and 2019.

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Public input was also requested on the identification of procedures to be followed when applying for, and deciding on, environmental authorisation applications for REDZ activities.

Members of the public are invited to submit written comments or input by 4 September 2020 to the following address:

By post to: The Acting Director -General

Department of Environment, Forestry and Fisheries
Attention: Dr Dee Fischer
Private Bag X447
Pretoria
0001

By hand at: The Acting Director -General

Department of Environment, Forestry and Fisheries
Attention: Dr Dee Fischer
473 Steve Biko Road
Arcadia
0083

By e-mail: dfischer@environment.gov.za

Comments or input received after the dosing date will not be considered.

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The boundaries of the areas referred to in the Notices are available from the Department of Environment, Forestry and Fisheries at http://egis.environment.gov.za – Geographical Areas

Copies of the Gazettes can be accessed by visiting:

17 July 2020 gazettes:

• National Environmental Management Act, 1998 (Act No. 107 of 1998): Consultation on the intention to amend the procedures to be followed in applying for or deciding on an environmental authorisation application for large scale wind and solar photovoltaic renewable energy development activities when occurring in renewable energy development zones [G 43528 – GoN 785]

• National Environmental Management Act, 1998 (Act No. 107 of 1998): Consultation on the intention to identify geographical areas of strategic importance for the development of large scale wind and solar photovoltaic energy facilities [G 43528 – GoN 786]

• National Environmental Management Act, 1998 (Act No. 107 of 1998): Consultation on the identification of geographical areas of strategic importance for the development of electricity transmission and distribution infrastructure and to repeal Government Notice 113, published under Government Gazette 41445 of 16 February 2018 [G 43528 – GoN 787]National Environmental Management Act, 1998 (Act No. 107 of 1998): Consultation on the intention to identify geographical areas important for the development of strategic gas transmission pipeline infrastructure [G 43528 – GoN 788]

31 July 2020 gazettes:

• National Environmental Management Act 1998 (Act no 107 of 1998): Consultation on the intention to adopt generic environmental management programme (EMPr) relevant to an application for environmental authorisation for the development of expansion of gas transmission pipeline infrastructure [G 43571 – GoN 834]

• National Environmental Management Act 1998 (Act no 107 of 1998): Consultation on intention to adopt a standard for the development of electricity transmission and distribution infrastructure within identified geographical areas and the exclusion of this infrastructure from the requirement to obtain an environmental authorisation [G 43571 – GoN 835]

• National Environmental Management Act 1998 (Act no 107 of 1998): Consultation on the intention to identify procedure to be followed when applying for or deciding on an environmental authorisation for the development of expansion of gas transmission pipeline infrastructure when occurring in strategic gas pipeline corridors [G 43571 – GoN 836]

• National Environmental Management Act 1998 (Act no 107 of 1998): Consultation on the intention to identify the procedures to be followed when applying for or deciding on an environmental authorisation application for the development of electricity transmission and distribution infrastructure when occurring in renewable energy development zones [G 43571 – GoN 840]

• National Environmental Management Act 1998 (Act no 107 of 1998): Consultation on the intention to identify procedure to be followed when applying for or deciding on an environmental authorisation for large scale wind and solar photovoltaic facilities, when occurring in renewable energy development zones [G 43571 – GoN 841]

Edited by ESI Africa. Source SAnews.gov.za