S. African Anti-Fracking Group Threatens Legal Challenge


JOHANNESBURG, July 22 (Reuters) – A South African anti-fracking group threatened a legal challenge on Tuesday to government plans to grant shale gas exploration licences in the pristine semi-desert of the Karoo, saying the regulatory process had been marked by "patent ineptitude".

In a February State of the Nation address, President Jacob Zuma described shale gas as a "game changer" for the economy and said Pretoria would allow hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, "within the framework of our good environmental laws".

The government had been expected to publish regulations overseeing shale exploration before an election in May this year although there is still no sign of the rules.

Fracking involves digging wells up to 4 km deep and pumping in large amounts of water and chemicals under high pressure to crack the shale rock and release the gas. In a dry region such as the Karoo, in the middle of the country, any change in water use causes concern.

Green groups wanting to protect the Karoo, believed to hold significant shale gas deposits, said Pretoria was incapable of ensuring firms such as Royal Dutch Shell, at the forefront of the fracking push, would adhere to the rules.

They accused the energy companies of already drawing up slip-shod environmental plans and failing to consult communities and landowners, violating fundamental property rights.

"The environmental management plans are fatally flawed," Jonathan Deal, head of the Treasure the Karoo Action Group (TKAG), told a news conference.


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Nor | Jul. 23, 2014
The current regime "does not need laws", they are the law!!!! - and an incredibly greedy one to boot. No governments tend to their countrymen so why tend to the country!! They are unable to see any farther than their bank accounts and what will fill them in the fastest possible time - eg. sanral and the etoll. I honestly need someone to clarify my dilema = toll gates are fixed posts and do not require gas/petrol - so why do the fees increase when this greedy beast increases the cost of petrol?


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