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PROTECT THE
WEST COAST

Mining Companies have a plan for the West Coast of South Africa that will destroy hundreds of kilometres of pristine coastal environments, disrupting local communities, fisheries, tourism and the rugged natural beauty of this globally recognised biodiversity hotspot.

 

Stand with us to Protect the West Coast!

OURS, NOT MINE DOCUMENTARY

Ours, Not Mine exposes heavy mineral sand mining on the West Coast of South Africa that entails the industrial-scale extraction of minerals such as zircon, ilmenite, rutile, magnetite and garnet (used in everyday products) from huge tracts of coastline between Columbine and the Orange River, including parts that are officially deemed Ecologically or Biologically Significant Marine Areas. Visually rich footage shows the biodiversity and splendour of a pristine wilderness. This is juxtaposed with the wasteland left behind for generations by mining companies from Australia, South Africa, China and others.

 

Woven into a visually disturbing narrative are the stories of indigenous and local people affected by the mining, including elders from the Khoi Griqua people, who depend on the land and ocean for their livelihood. Directed by Bryan Little and produced by Ana-Filipa Domingues of Fly on the Wall Films, the film is a call to action to push the government into following the correct, legally binding procedures before granting licenses, such as environmental impact studies and fully comprehensive public participation. The film underlines that a destructive, single-use activity stifles efforts to find sustainable economic activities, such as agriculture, fisheries and nature-based tourism.

1000

Endemic Plant and Animal Species

500

Kilometers of Coastline

20

Mining Threats

1

Earth for Us to Protect

The risks

Despite the creation of short term jobs, mining adversely affects ecosystems and has a detrimental knock-on effect to the broader West Coast environment, economy and society.

Image by Ryan Stone

What is at stake?

From the Orange River to Cape Columbine, hundreds of kilometres of the South Africa’s West Coast coastline are being mined, or have been earmarked for mining. These industrial-scale extractions have lasting consequences for local communities, fisheries and the natural environment, for generations to come.

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HOW YOU CAN HELP

Volunteer, donate, get social or sign the petition. We are looking for all the help we can get. So please, assist us in protecting this magical stretch of coastline that thousands of plants, animals and people call home.

The fight so far

View where we are at with our efforts to stop the reckless mining activities that will destroy the pristine coastline that is the West Coast of South Africa.

Our vision

Our plan of action is to show and tell the world what is happening along this pristine coastline. The reality is that this area is under siege by a strew of multinational mining companies that seem to have the unequivocal backing of the South African Government.

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CURRENT MINING THREATS.

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Extension of Tormin Mine

West Coast

Mineral Sand Resources (Pty) Ltd (MSR) is an Australian Mining company that owns and operates the Tormin Mineral Sands Mine on the West Coast of South Africa, about 19km north of the Olifants River Estuary and 25km west of the town of Lutzville.

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Belton Park Trading

Elandsbaai to Strandfontein

On 4 October 2019 Belton Park Trading 127 (Pty) Ltd (BPT127) lodged an application for a Prospecting Right with the Department of Mineral Resources and Energy (DMRE) to undertake offshore prospecting activities 1km seaward off the coast between Elands Bay and Strandfontein 

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De Beers

Northern Namaqualand

On 14 June 2018 De Beers Consolidated Mines (Pty) Ltd (De Beers) lodged an application for a Prospecting Right with the Department of Mineral Resources and Energy (DMRE) to undertake offshore diamond prospecting activities between Kleinsee and Hondeklip Bay.

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Mineral Sand Resources

Olifants Estuary

Environmental authorisation has been granted in respect of a prospecting right application for heavy minerals on the remaining extent of farm the point 267 and Lot 615 Olifants River settlement. These 2 farms are located on the northern banks of the Olifants estuary and extend along the sea and upriver for about 15 km.

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Buchuberg Resources

Lutzville, Vredendal and Lamberts Bay

In March 2021, Buchuberg Resources (Pty) Ltd lodged two applications for onshore prospecting rights and environmental authorisation in two vast areas located on the West Coast with the Department of Mineral Resources and Energy (DMRE) for – among others - diamonds, gold ore, heavy minerals, rare earths and mineral sands.

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Cape Zircon

Cederberg Municipality

On 7 April 2021, Cape Zircon (Pty) Ltd lodged two applications with the DMRE for prospecting rights and environmental authorisation in two extensive areas located within the Cederberg Municipality on the West Coast. Minerals that will be prospected for include diamonds, gold ore, heavy minerals, rare earths and mineral sands.

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A research group at UCT, based in the Department of Environmental and Geographical Science, has been monitoring, documenting and mapping details of prospecting and mining as well as oil and gas applications and operations on the West Coast, over the past 18 months. The increase in number of applications and Environmental Authorizations for prospecting and mining on the west coast, is a major cause for concern in the absence of any environmental planning framework or a Marine Spatial Plan. Prof Sowman and her research team, together with GIS expert Rio Button, will continue to monitor and update the status of these applications and add new applications as information becomes available. The public is invited to participate in the process of updating the map and informing the research team of new applications or a change in status of such applications.  Links to the UCT website with details of the various applications and operations as well as updated maps, will be provided shortly.  

PARTNERS.

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