A Brief Overview of the South African Legal Framework for Marine Pollution with Reference to Land-Based Marine Pollution

In the Republic of South Africa, there are numerous legal instruments that provide guidelines and legislative procedures for processes and issues relevant to marine pollution. The aim of this analysis is to briefly review and synthesise the legislative structure literature. It also becomes unclear from a collection of documents looked at, which one is relevant to whom, under what conditions and to what degree. In this regard, some light is shed here, showing, most importantly, the irreplaceable and authoritative text that holds sway over others. In addition, the analysis quickly mentions classification of laws and regulations based on common law, doctrines of general application statutes of the equity band. Four primary sources are used by the South African Legal System: laws, court rulings, common law, customary law and indigenous law. While case laws and indigenous laws have not been discussed in any way, as environmentalism is a relatively new field of social practise, the explanation for this is not farfetched. In dispute resolution and arbitration, the question of dominance is addressed, citing a noteworthy international case that is applicable to any signatory to the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Seas. Light is shed on the root basis of the legal system of marine pollution, citing main parts of the Republics, Constitution, statutes of the environment, policy papers, and bye laws. As the synchronous use of bye laws is disclosed, the characteristics enshrined in the United Nations Convention of the Law of the Seas are unpacked in both objects. There is also an attempt to list four wide areas around which cases of marine pollution could require adjudication. In addition, the report looks at liability problems with the state itself, which seems to be the e perpetrator (or not). A case from the Pace International Law Review exemplifies this. Using a theory unpacked in the Corfu Channel Case of 1949 and the Declarations that followed, customary law and general international principles of law are brought into review. The prominence of the National Environment al Management Act (NEMA) is identified in the light of the presence of the other bye laws by looking at the South African general legislative structure. Before wrapping up the threats, opportunities, and conclusions, procedural steps taken in the management of marine pollution are highlighted.

Author (s) Details

Dr. Cliff Sibusiso Dlamini
Center for Coordination of Agricultural Research and Development for Southern Africa (CCARDESA), Plot 4701, Station Exit Road Private Bag 00357, Gaborone, Botswana.

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