Tuesday, January 30, 2007

INTEGRATED COASTAL MANAGEMENT BILL

PUBLIC PARTICIPATION PROCESS

On 30 January 2007 the Department of Environmental Affairs and Tourism will
embark on a public participation process to discuss the Integrated Coastal
Management Bill which was gazetted on 15 December 2006 for a 90 day public
comment period.
The first public participation process will take place in KwaZulu-Natal from
30 January to 1 February 2007, where after other provinces will be visited
(full details of meetings on http://www.deat.gov.za). Specific meetings will
also be hold in each coastal province with government employees and other
stakeholders comprising members of each province’s Provincial Coastal
Committee who will assist to facilitate the participation process. These
committees assist to co-ordinate coastal management in each province.
The Department has also compiled a user friendly guide to facilitate
meaningful and informed public participation during the 90 day comments
period. The Guide is available in English, Afrikaans, Zulu and Xhosa on
http://www.deat.gov.za.
When the Bill becomes an Act of Parliament South Africa will for the first
time have a national Coastal Management Act in place for managing our
coastal zone, a priceless national asset.
When the Minister of Environmental Affairs and Tourism announced the
introduction of the Bill in December 2006 he emphasized the enormous social
and economic benefits derived from our coastline and the costs to society
associated with the mismanagement of the coast and its resources. He further
pointed out that economic and social opportunities for wealth creation and
equity are being missed and coastal ecosystems are being degraded.
The publication of the Bill for comment therefore represents a historical
opportunity for coastal stakeholders, interested and affected parties and
members of the general public to help shape the content of the proposed
Integrated Coastal Management Act.

Issued by Blessing Manale, Chief Director: Communications (Acting)
Department of Environmental Affairs and Tourism
Cell: 083 381 2939 or 012 310 3862
Visit our website: www.deat.gov.za

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