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South Africa Court Orders Sasol, Eskom Pollution Clampdown

  • Environment minister failed to prescribe, enforce rules: judge
  • Case seen as key test of country’s resolve to tackle emissions
Eskom Holdings SOC Ltd.'s Tutuka Coal-Fired Power Plant
Photographer: Waldo Swiegers/Bloomberg
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A South African court ordered the government to take measures to improve the air quality in a key industrial zone, saying it had breached the constitution by failing to crack down on pollution emitted by power plants operated by Eskom Holdings SOC Ltd. and refineries owned by Sasol Ltd.

Environmental Affairs Minister Barbara Creecy had a legal obligation to prescribe rules to implement and enforce anti-pollution regulations and had unreasonably delayed in doing so, High Court Judge Colleen Collis said in a ruling handed down in Pretoria, the capital, on Friday. She ordered the matter to be addressed within 12 months and that the new rules provide for penalties for non-compliance and adequate monitoring.