President of South Africa, Cyril Ramaphosa
Minister of Mineral Resources, Gwede Mantashe
Minister of Forestry, Fisheries and the Environment, Barbara Creecy
CEO South African National Biodiversity Institute, Mr Shonisani Munzhedzi
CEO Shell, Mr Ben Van Beurden
COPY OF THE OPEN LETTER:
NATIONAL AND INTERNATIONAL ORGANISATIONS URGE THE SOUTH AFRICAN GOVERNMENT TO DESIST FROM THE CURRENT SEISMIC SURVEY ACTIVITIES TO ALLOW FOR FURTHER URGENT SCIENTIFIC RESEARCH
The Wildlife Animal Protection Forum South Africa (WAPFSA), is an alliance of diverse South African NGOs that share certain values, knowledge and objectives. WAPFSA collectively comprises of a body of expertise from scientific, conservation, welfare, rights, tourism, social justice, indigenous rights, public advocacy sectors and the law.
The communication supported by the undersigned national and international organisations refer to the proposed seismic exploration activity by Shell and Shearwater GeoServices that is due to begin on or around the 1st of December 2021 and fully support the actions and campaign from the coalition called Oceans Not Oil.
The undersigned members are opposed to the proposed exploration activities due to a host of reasons which are outlined below:
In 2013, Impact Africa Limited applied for an Exploration Rights in terms of Section 79 of the Mineral and Petroleum Resources Development Act (MPRDA) to explore for oil and gas in the Transkei and Algoa Exploration Areas off the East Coast of South Africa. An Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) report was, at that stage, not a requirement in the application process and an Environmental Management Plan (EMP) was drawn up instead. In the eight years since the exploration rights were applied for, legislation has changed and it is now mandatory that an EIA is carried out for projects of this nature. It is vitally important that a high level of research and study be undertaken before such a large scale seismic survey can be permitted. Various assessments need to be conducted by scientists to determine the effects of the proposed project before it can be allowed to commence.