The environmental regulation of uranium mines in Namibia : a project life cycle analysis
Uranium exploration and mining activities in Namibia have increased rapidly since 2003, which increase not only poses a significant impact on the country’s economy, but also on its unique and pristine natural environment. The nature and extent of the environmental impacts associated with uranium mining requires a sound environmental law and policy framework that regulates uranium activities, impacts and aspects during each phase of the project life cycle of a uranium mine. It also requires of authorities to establish and enhance environmental protection and sustainability during uranium mining operations and to ensure that all environmental impacts that inevitably occur as a result of uranium mining activities are addressed in a holistic and integrated manner during each phase of the project life cycle of a uranium mine. In order to do this the country must develop and maintain an efficient and effective environmental governance regime. Namibia’s environmental law and policy framework that regulates uranium mining does not cover the entire PLC of uranium mining. It is vital that the current loops in the country’s existing environmental regulatory framework be closed and that an efficient and effective environmental governance regime, as envisaged in this study, be established. This will enable the administering agents to actively promote and maintain the welfare of the people, ecosystems, essential ecological processes and the biodiversity of Namibia, as well as the utilisation of living natural resources on a sustainable basis to the benefit of all Namibians, both present and future, as pledged in the Namibian Constitution.
- Law