Report on acid water presented to Ministers

Acid mine drainage
The team of experts compiling a report on the acid mine drainage (AMD) situation in the Witwatersrand has completed the report, and on Thursday presented it to the Inter-Ministerial Committee (IMC).

The Ministers discussed the findings with the experts, and asked the team to identify more options to resolve the AMD problem, as well as the cost implications of each.

The IMC and the team of experts would then meet again to decide on the way forward, based on recommendations from the new report.

The report was not made public.

Water Affairs Minister Buyelwa Sonjica, Mineral Resources Minister Susan Shabangu, National Planning Commission Minister Trevor Manuel, Science and Technology MinisterNaledi Pandor and Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan serve on the IMC which was formed to investigate the issue.

The panel of experts tasked with compiling the report to assess the risk, was made up of individuals from the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research, the Water Research Council, the Council for Geoscience, the Chamber of Mines, as well as the Department of Water and Environmental Affairs and the Department of Mineral Resources.

AMD has been described as one of the most significant environmental threats facing South Africa, which was already a water scarce country. Significant funds would be required to treat the problem, which was the legacy of 120 years of gold mining in the Witwatersrand.