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Opponents of the N2 toll road that will snake through the Wild Coast are ready to take their battle to the highest court following the controversial road's approval by Environment Minister Edna Molewa this week.

The South African National Roads Agency Limited (Sanral) has fought tooth and nail to build the road from Durban to East London for the past 10 years but has faced fierce opposition from environmentalists, the local community and civil society.

Inyoni (AKA Slipway)Inyoni (AKA Slipway)A crowd of bemused holiday makers gathered on the beach at Hole in the Wall yesterday where a small penguin had set ashore nursing an injured leg. As it is tagged (S29329), it definitely has had human contact before and seems to have landed at the busiest beach in the area specifically looking for help from humans. Especially as it is over 1000km away from its usual habitat.

The African Penguin (Spheniscus demersus, Xhosa name: Nombombiya, and also known as the Black-footed Penguin) is an endangered species and there are fewer than 100,000 left in the world.

A hiker from nearby Coffee Bay turned out to be a marine biologist from Hawaii, and advised Charlene from Hole in the Wall Hotel on the correct care for the docile, cute little fuzzy, who whacked down 4 sards for dinner, and another 3 for breakfast this morning.

It is well known by now that the minister of minerals & energy revoked the mining license, granted to MRC and their local subsidiary Xolco in 2008, at the beginning of the month.

However the door is still ajar and we await the outcome in 3 months time.

The applicants have until then to resubmit properly completed environmental impact assessments, a full environmental management plan, and to comply fully with the various requirements of affected government departments.

Some of the comments are really funny. E.g.:

Mifozi, wrote
IOL Comments
09:06am on 30 May 2011
IOL Comments

Wow, the marriage of Prince William and Lady Catherine solicited a great deal of interest on the site yesterday. The visitor count hit a new all time record, and I thought the site had been compromised until I figured out that over half of the hits were on the blog post from 2008 about the Royal brothers riding the Wild Coast. (http://www.wildcoast.co.za/node/514)

I thought that (what little I saw of it) the pomp and pageantry of the wedding of the century was quite magical. The stuff of fantasy; and we need that in this world.

Click on the pics for full size popup:

How high can the ocean levels rise with global warming?

(Apparently not very high.)

Here's another one:

If we were to supply all the world's electricity supply via solar, it would take up approximately 496,805 km2.

Sounds like a lot, but how big is it?

KZN Cabinet to fight N2 toll road plan
Published in: Legalbrief Environmental
Date: Tue 14 December 2010
Category: Litigation
Issue No: 0193

<i>The KZN Cabinet will go to court to block the N2 Wild Coast toll road because the plan is 'not in the interests of the people of KZN', notes a report in The Mercury.</i>

Cyanide & Happiness @ Explosm.net

Well known Kwazulu-Natal midlands water-colour artist, Joan Bastard, has kindly put together a calendar of paintings for SWC, depicting scenes of Transkei and Pondoland.

These calendars are selling for R150 each, of which R30/ calendar is donated to SWC. The remainder goes towards printing costs and artist commission. The calendars are printed on high quality paper and make wonderful mementos and gifts.

Next time you're in Coffee Bay, be sure to pick up one of these ingenious purses made by the local children from old cartons.


in loving memory of Steven Caine
(14 December 1966 - 25 September 2009)

The Amadiba Crisis Committee (ACC) and Legal Resource Centre (LRC) demands decision from the department “by no later than 28 September 2010”, failing which the matter will be taken to High Court.

Social worker John Clarke has provided the following summary of developments, and opinion.

Xolobeni Mining
We are still waiting for DG of Mineral Resources, Sandile Nogcina, to announce the outcome of the appeal by the Amadiba Crisis Committee.  It has been over two years since the appeal was lodged.

A friend was lamenting on facebook about the pervasive racism in the small town where she's recently moved, and finding herself cringing internally and shutting up instead of speaking out.

Her friend Annie Ory (who I'm compelled to credit for such sage advice) responded:

We are appealing to enthusiastic volunteers to assist rural schools and promote literacy, computer skills, extramural activities, arts and sports development.

CASABio (Collaborative Archive of South African Biodiversity) is an NGO dedicated to the conservation of the earth's species.

Their bottom line is: get involved!!!
It's one way you CAN help protect our natural heritage.

CASABIO have submitted the following protest posters against the destruction of our Pondoland Center of Endemism:

PRESS RELEASE 12 -04 -2010 N2 TOLL ROAD - GOVERNMENT APPEARS OBLIVIOUS TO THE COMPLEXITY OF REAL ISSUES AT STAKE A recent parliamentary response to questions about the N2 Toll Road, posed to the Minister of Transport, shows the government has a deeply flawed understanding of the broader issues surrounding the N2 Toll road debacle.

By: Christy van der Merwe
10th February 2010

The hearings involving interested parties appealing a decision to grant Transworld Energy Minerals (TEM) a licence to mine heavy minerals from the dunes near Xolobeni on the Wild Coast, scheduled to take place this week, were cancelled.

The committee of four people, which was appointed by the Mining and Minerals Board to oversee the presentations from all parties involved, could not proceed because it had not received the necessary documentation from the Department of Mineral Resources (DMR).

The Legal Resources Centre's submission to DME on behalf of the ACC and Xolobeni community is rather long-winded and dry; but also interesting, and thoroughly convincing: 

THE DEPARTMENT OF MINERALS AND ENERGY

INTERNAL APPEAL/REVIEW OF THE AWARD OF A MINING RIGHT TO TRANSWORLD 
ENERGY AND MINERAL RESOURCES (SA) (PTY) LTD

Appeal/review instituted by:

THE AMADIBA CRISIS COMMITTEE

Directed to:

MINISTER OF THE DEPARTMENT OF MINERALS AND ENERGY

2 Recent print articles, which only appeared in the Daily Dispatch Online today, have already been published in the Weekend Post and on other environmental sites; proving conclusively that public perception is strongly against the mining:</i>

UPDATE on the proposed exorbitant fee increases. Not so bad after all:

The currently gazetted prices, with effect from 1 October 2010, for fishery permits are as follows:

Not to over-stress the absurdity in the first place, of bureaucratizing access to their coastal resources for the uneducated, impoverished, and already marginalized inhabitants of the Wild Coast; but there has been a recurring theme of blatant government incompetence played out over the past few years at Hole in the Wall.

South Africa: Late Start For Crayfish Licences, Inter Press Service, Thursday, December 31, 2009 (posted by Global Issues)

So here's a basic outline of the Volunteer programme I would love to get going: www.wildcoast.co.za/ict4d

Please contribute some constructive criticism and/or suggestions. I have this unshakable belief that it's important (even if only for the 2 percentile) and that it will work, but I've got zero resources, and even less confidence, at the minute.

Buyelekhaya Dalindyebo, the paramount chief[1], or king, of the Thembu tribe, has been sentenced to an effective 15 years imprisonment.

 

  • Five years for each of the three counts of arson;
  • One year for all seven counts of kidnapping;
  • One year for defeating the ends of justice;
  • Five years for each of three counts of assault with intent to do grievous bodily harm; and
  • 10 years for culpable homicide.