Community take a stand against plans for Nylsvley

Mining to be done in Nylsvley has upset the community. Photo:

MOKOPANE – A community taking a stand for the past seven years is left baffled after the Department of Mineral Resources has given the green light to an Australian mining group, c, to exploit platinum in the Nylsvley floodplains about 20 km south of Mokopane.

Emile Honiball, legal representative to the community objecting, says: “Sylvania has not received environmental approval from the Department of Environmental Affairs for the proposed mine.

“Sylvania had to return to the drawing board twice in the past few years to adjust its environmental studies”. Honiball said Sylvania also reportedly has no water license. Without these approvals and a water use license, mining cannot proceed,” said Honiball.

Warwick Tarbaton, President of the conservation organisation Friends of Nylsvley, told Bosveld that it was disappointing news.

“It is all about the economy and to make money. They do not take in consideration what impact this will have on the environment.”

Marion Mengell, Spokesperson of Friends of Nylsvley calls on South Africans to co-operate and help prevent the floodplains from being destroyed by mining operations.

Hillary Knight a member of Friends of the Nylsvley says: “It came as a big surprise that Sylvania received the green light. The Friends of Nylsvley will certainly appeal this verdict”.

Wetland experts also expressed their dissatisfaction, saying that the Nyl River and its floodplains are one of the most sensitive and complex freshwater ecosystems in the country.

These unique floodplains are the largest in South Africa and cover 17 000 ha. Comment could not be drawn from Sylvania at the time of going to print.

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Mariëtte Roos
Journalist (Bosveld Review)

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