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Monthly SHE and Foodstuffs Legal Newsletter of what happened in April 2024


Dear Clients,

Below please find a summary of selected relevant environmental, health and safety and foodstuffs legal developments that took place during April 2024.


 1) Occupational Health and Safety Act

  • DRAFT Regulations for Hazardous Chemical Agents

New DRAFT Regulations were published for public comment. Once in force they would repeal the 2021 Regulations for Hazardous Chemical Agents.

GN 66 of 5 February 2010 (GG 32930) which sets out the occupational exposure for airborne respirable silica would also be repealed [the Draft Regulations incorrectly refer to this as GN 32930 of 2012]. The level itself would, however, remain unchanged at 0.1 mg/m3.

A copy can be downloaded from our website at https://dittke.com/2024/05/08/draft-regulations-for-hazardous-chemical-agents/ .

  •  Draft Code of Practice for Conveyer Systems

This draft code was published for public comment in terms of the Driven Machinery Regulations.


2) National Veld and Forest Fire Act

The 2013 amendment Act was approved but will only enter into force on a date to be published in the Government Gazette. One of the changes is that the name of the Act will change to National Veldfire Act.


3) National Environmental Management Act

  • Intention to adopt Substation Exclusion Norm and to exclude Development and Expansion of Transmission and Distribution Substations from Requirement to obtain Environmental Authorisation

A draft proposal to exclude the above from the requirement to obtain a prior environmental authorisation was published for public comment.


4) Draft Gas Master Plan

The draft Gas Master Plan was published for public comment. According to the executive summary the plan adds to existing energy policies as government moves towards an integrated energy planning approach. It outlines the role of natural gas within the context of energy mix and provides policy direction to industry. Its scope is limited to upstream production and associated activities (excluding exploration) and midstream transmission networks (excluding reticulation).


5) Air Quality Act

  • Sectoral Emissions Targets 2025 to 2030

In terms of its international obligations, the South African government is required to implement measures to reduce emissions. To achieve this it intends to set Sectoral Emissions Targets (SETs).

The Minister of Forestry, Fisheries and the Environment is required to allocate SETs to ensure the country meets the stated greenhouse gas emission target as published in the Nationally Determined Contribution. SETs are greenhouse gas emissions reduction targets, either qualitative or quantitative, applicable to sectors or sub-sectors over a period.

Seven sectors were identified with Cabinet to focus on for the development of SETs. This includes agriculture, industry, energy, mining, human settlements, transport, and environment. The allocation of SETs is at the level of national government and the various government departments with policy jurisdiction over these sectors will be affected. The Minister will allocate SETs to these specific line departments. It will then up to the latter to implement GHG emissions reduction measures for industries or sectors falling under them.


Policy Sector Target type Unit 2025 2030 Cumulative (2025-2030) – SET Allocation
DMRE – Electricity Emission level MtCO2eq 177.3 124.7
DMRE – Other Emission Reductions MtCO2eq 3.7 11.5 47.9
DALRRD Emission Reductions MtCO2eq 0.7 0.6 3.4
DWS Emission Reductions MtCO2eq 0.1 0.1
DFFE Emission Reductions MtCO2eq 7.0 15.2 76.5
DoT Emission Reductions MtCO2eq 0.2 4.5 18.0


  • Notice declaring Temporary Asphalt Plants as Controlled Emitter and Establishing Emission Standards (2014) – Amendment

The above Notice declared temporary asphalt plants to be controlled emitters, meaning that emission limits were imposed. Changes were now made to the Notice.


6) Nuclear Energy Act

  • Declaration of certain Substances, Materials and Equipment as Restricted Material, Source Material, Special Nuclear Material and Nuclear related Equipment and Material (2009) – Draft Amendment

In terms of this Declaration various substances etc were declared as nuclear material. A draft amendment was published for public comment.

The intention is to amend the definition of “source material” by stipulating that ore or ore residue of the minerals listed below is excluded, namely:

  • uranium, expressed as a conversion to uranium oxide (U308)
  • thorium, expressed as a conversion to thorium oxide (Th02);
  • uranium by products of enrichment processes, eg. enriched in isotope U-238 or depleted in the isotope U-235;
  • uranium containing the mixture of isotopes occurring in nature.


7) Policy Position on the Conservation and Sustainable Use of Elephant, Lion, Leopard and Rhinoceros

A policy position on the conservation and sustainable use of the species mentioned above was published by the Minister of Forestry, Fisheries and the Environment.



No relevant provincial legislation was published this month.



8)    City of Johannesburg

The new Municipal Planning By-law was published; this replaces the 2016 by-law.


9)    Chris Hani District Municipality

The following were published by the municipality:

  • Water Services By-law (this repeals the 2006 Water and Sanitation Services By-law)
  • Municipal Health By-law (this repeals the 2018 By-law relating to Municipal Health Services)
  • By-law relating to Air Quality
  • Community Fire Services By-law.

They all contain numerous numbering and other errors, or incorrectly make reference to the Government Gazette instead of the Eastern Cape Provincial Gazette.


10)  City of Matlosana Local Municipality

The new Community Fire Safety By-law was published.  It states that at the same time the following are repealed:

  • By-laws relating to Fire Brigade Services (1981)
  • By-laws relating to the Storage, Use and Handling of Flammable Liquids and Substances (1979)
  • Standard Water Supply By-laws (1977).

These were, however, already repealed by the 2003 Fire Services By-law.

Similarly, there are already the 2003 Water Supply By-laws (which by implication repealed the 1977 Standard Water Supply By-laws.

The new Community Fire Safety By-law therefore presumably repeals the 2003 Fire Services By-law.

Should there be a query regarding this by-law it is suggested that the municipality be contacted for clarity. Legally speaking, there is doubt how valid the new by-law is, and whether it actually repeals the 2003 Fire Services By-law.


If you have any questions please feel free to contact us.

Kind regards