The Institute of Marine and Environmental Law was very fortunate to arrange for Prof Ben Richardson, from the University of Tasmania, to visit the University of Cape Town in April through an NRF Visiting Scholars Grant. Whilst in Cape Town, Prof Richardson met with members of the Institute and presented an open lecture titled ‘Time and sustainability: What is missing and what does environmental law need to do?’. Arranged in partnership with the Western Cape Branch of the Environmental Law Association, Professor Richardson explored how time is fundamentally important to sustainability and its governance.
We are pleased to let you know that all our postgraduate programmes and courses are on offer in 2019. We have also determined the provisional block-teaching week dates. Please further note that Prof Alexander Paterson (Alexander.Paterson@uct.ac.za) will be the IMEL Programme Convener in 2019, and should you have any queries, please do be in touch with him in the new year.
Professor Alexander Paterson was recently selected as an international trainer for the ADB-IUCNAEL Strengthening Capacity for Environmental Law in the Asia-Pacific Developing Environmental Champions: Train-the-Trainers Program. This involved him travelling to Kathmandu in Nepal in late November 2018 to present a four day Train-the Trainers Program aimed at advancing the teaching and practice of environmental, climate change and sustainability law across Asia.
Land-use planning frameworks have traditionally focused on developing settlements and related infrastructure. Climate change and biodiversity conservation have not historically always been considered in the formulation and implementation of land-use planning frameworks. Even if they are considered, the focus and impact of land-use planning frameworks is often localized rather than ecosystem wide. While countries are increasingly recognising and making the connection between land-use planning, biodiversity and climate change, in many countries these considerations are not yet adequately reflected in domestic laws and policies. There is accordingly often an absence of effective legal tools in place to practically facilitate improved integration of land-use planning, biodiversity and climate change issues and concerns.
After almost 34 years of service to UCT generally, the Law Faculty and IMEL in particular, Professor Jan Glazewski retires at the end of 2019. Having joined the Institute shortly after its formation, Jan has over the years inspired many to become fascinated in and study environmental law. The breadth of his influence and impact was evidenced by the audience at his Valedictory Lecture held in the Oliver Tambo Moot Court on 14 November 2018, following which he was presented with a box of selected “Jan’s Valedictory Wine”.
The Environmental Law Association recently held its Annual Conference and Student Conference at Nelson Mandela University in Port Elizabeth from 26-27 September 2018. The theme of this year’s conference was “Links between Environmental Protection and Justice”. Several of IMEL’s postgraduate students presented papers at the Student Conference on topics including water resource management, mining in protected areas and creating equitable and efficient access and benefit sharing regimes.
Amanda Mkhonza recently participated in the Training of Trainers for African Environmental Law Lecturers in Africa Programme held in Nairobi from 17-21 September 2018. Together with a number of early career lecturers from across the African continent, she experienced the flipped classroom approach – being a student for the week.
UCT’s Future Water Institute hosted the Future Water Symposium on 14 September 2018. The theme this year was ‘Regenerative Water Futures: Tensions in Resource Scarcity’. Amanda Mkhonza from the Institute of Marine and Environmental Law attended the Symposium and facilitated a round table discussion on ‘Water and the Law’.
Between June and July 2018 IMEL's Olivia Rumble accompanied the Department of Environmental Affairs on a 9 province roadshow to introduce stakeholders to the Climate Change Bill. Olivia has been part of the legal drafting team for the Bill over the past three years and she has been assisting the Department in its revision prior to it being tabled in Parliament.
Amanda Mkhonza recently facilitated and presented at a Workshop on Securing our Strategic Water Source Areas. This KAS-funded workshop was held in Cape Town and attended by a multi-sector stakeholder group, ranging from national government representatives (from the Department of Environmental Affairs) to government institutions (the Water Research Commission, the South African National Biodiversity Institute, the Council on Scientific and Industrial Research and the South African National Parks) as well as non-governmental organisations (the World Wide Fund for Nature-South Africa, the Environmental Monitoring Group and the Centre for Environmental Rights), conservation planners (including KZN Ezemvelo Wildlife, CapeNature and Eastern Cape Tourism and Parks Agency), private companies such as EOH and LLM students from the Environmental Law Masters program at UCT.
On their 3rd day of their block lectures, the Natural Resources Law class took a moment to appreciate the intrinsic value of South Africa’s rich biodiversity. The tour of the internationally acclaimed botanical gardens formed part of a full day’s lecture series hosted by the South African National Biodiversity Institute (SANBI), nestled just outside the gardens.
Sandy Paterson recently returned from Mbeya, Tanzania, where he facilitated a Regional Workshop on Integrated Planning and the Law. The Workshop formed part of the Integrated Planning to Implement the CBD Strategic Plan and Increase Ecosystem Resilience to Climate Change Project implemented by the IUCN Environmental Law Centre, the IUCN Global Protected Areas Programme and three IUCN regional offices. The objective of the project is to increase capacity to optimise planning to support biodiversity and climate change adaptation objectives, including through the effective engagement of protected area systems. The project focuses on integrating climate change and biodiversity concerns into spatial planning frameworks in four district surrounding the Lake Tanganyika ecosystem.