Natural Resources and Environmental Legislation

  

Name:

Preservation and Development of Agricultural Land Bill

Department:

Department of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries

Summary:

 This Bill seeks to regulate the competing interests for agricultural land by other industries by introducing norms and standards, protected agricultural areas (where non-agricultural activities will be restricted) and guide municipalities in their planning functions through agricultural sector plans to avoid the loss of high potential agricultural land to township development.
Effect on
agribusiness:

This legislation is critical for the sustained prosperity of agriculture, and therefore also the agribusiness sector as it will divert developments as far as possible away from high value agricultural land. 

Process:

This Bill is currently before Nedlac. 

Agbiz submission:  In process

  

  

Name:

New Water Bill (exact name still unknown)

Department:

Department of Water and Sanitation

Summary:

The new water Bill is expected to consolidate the management of raw water (currently regulated by the National Water Act) and water services (currently regulated by the Water Services Act). 

Effect on
agribusiness:

Regarding the management of raw water, we expect there to be a strong focus on water reform and the introduction of a ban on water right trading coupled by a state-managed ‘use-it or lose-it’ provision as proposed by the National Water Policy of 2015. Secure water rights are vital for financiers as the value of irrigation land is inextricibly linked to the ability of that enterprise to lawfully use water.

Process:

We are still awaiting the first publication for public comments of the draft Bill. The Portfolio Committee has repeatedly scolded the Department for its delay in finalising a draft Bill and starting the legislative process.  

Agbiz submission:  n/a

  

  

Name:

Water licence application procedural regulations

Department:

Department of Water and Sanitation

Summary:

The regulations lay out the process that must be followed to apply for a wter use licence in terms of the National Water Act.

Effect on
agribusiness:

Secure water rights are vital for financiers as the value of irrigation land is linked to water rights. The procedure which an applicant will need to follow is therefore vital. Some agribusinesses may require water licences for their own activities too

Process:

The final regulations were promulgated in March 2017 but discussions are underway to propose amendments in order to facilitate the application process.

Agbiz submission:  Done

  

    

Name:

Carbon Tax Bill

Department:

National Treasury

Summary:

The Bill seeks to introduce a carbon emissions tax.

Effect on
agribusiness:

Primary agriculture is likely to receive an exemption until 2020 but agroprocessors and agribusinesses will likely be taxed for the consumption of fuel (logistics), electricity and possibly industrial activities.

Process:

The Bill was initially expected to be submitted to Parliament in July 2017 but indications are that this deadline will not be met. 

Agbiz submission:  

  

    

Name:

Green House Gas Reporting Regulations & technical guidelines

Department:

Department Environmental Affairs

Summary:

These regulations published under the National Environmental Management: Air Quality Act, places an obligation on emittors of green house gasses over a certain threshold to report their emissions to the Department of Environmental Affairs.

Effect on
agribusiness:

Some agribusinesses exceeding the threashold will need to submit annula figures to the Department by March each year. The information will be a central component to the carbon budgeting proposals post 2020.

Process:

The final regulations were promulgated in April 2017

Agbiz submission:  n/a

  

 

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