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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:Effects of dewatering and sinkholes on people and environment: an analysis of the Carletonville area in Gauteng, South Africa
Author:Van Eeden, Elize S.
Periodical:Historia: amptelike orgaan
Geographic term:South Africa
Subjects:environmental policy
water management
gold mining
Abstract:During the 1960s and 1970s sinkholes formed in the Carletonville municipal area, South Africa. This was the result of permits issued by the South African government to the gold mining companies to dewater three dolomitic compartments in the region. Since then the dewatering of the compartments has had negative effects on the ecology of the area and its environs. It appears that the State chose not to be accountable for the serious psychological and economic setbacks suffered by inhabitants of the area. Farmers and some businessmen from time to time raised serious objections to the dewatering of the compartments, and to the consequences of polluted water due to mining activity. The central government's approach was two-pronged: first, it wished to remain on good terms with the mining industry as a major source of income in the form of taxes. Second, and stemming from the first, it saw as its task to pacify the Carletonville community with promises of future compensation for losses suffered. A number of investigations by a variety of communities followed, all serving to fulfil the government's goal of pacifying the community. None were based on democratic principles. After 100 years, the water issue still has not settled down. It is about secrecy on an important issue that concerns both man and the environment: healthy water. Notes, ref., sum. in English (p. ii) and Afrikaans. [ASC Leiden abstract]