Sibanye Gold Limited (Sibanye-Stillwater): Proposed closure of the underground workings for Ezulwini Operations

Ezulwini Mining Company (Pty) Ltd 




Ezulwini Mining Company (Pty) Ltd (“EMC”/“Appellant”) is appealing to the Minister of Environmental Affairs (“Minister”/“Appeal Authority”) in terms of section 43(1A) of the National Environmental Management Act 107 of 1998, as amended (“NEMA”) and Regulation 4 of GN R993 in GG  38303 of 8 December 2014, as amended (“Appeal Regulations”) promulgated under NEMA. The appeal is  against the Regional Manager: Mineral Regulation for the Gauteng Regional office of the Department of Mineral Resources’ (“DMR”/“Regional Manager”/“Respondent”) negative environmental authorisation decision dated 30 April 2018. EMC’s application was for the decommissioning of the underground mine workings and associated cessation of pumping operations at Ezulwini mine, Gauteng Province under reference GP 30/5/1/2/2 (38) MR.


The appeal has been submitted to the Minister, as the Appeal Authority, within the prescribed 20-day time period afforded to the Appellant in terms of Regulation 4(1) of the Appeal Regulations, namely on 21 May 2018.


In terms of Regulation 4(1) of the Appeal Regulations, EMC must provide a copy of its appeal to all registered interested and affected parties (“I&APs”) and organs of state with an interest in this matter within 20 days. Section 47D(1)(bB) of NEMA and Regulation 8(1) of the Appeal Regulations provides that documents may be sent via email. An email notifying registered I&APs of the Appellant’s appeal, and providing the link to download the documents, was sent on 21 May 2018.

A copy of the appeal, and its annexures have been included below. Please note that Annexure “4” to the appeal which is a full copy of the Final Basic Assessment Application that was submitted to the DMR, is available at:


Should you wish to submit a responding statement to EMC’s appeal, we refer you to Regulation 5 in the Appeal Regulations which provides that “The applicant, the decision-maker, interested and affected parties and organ of state must submit their responding statement, if any, to the appeal authority and the appellant within 20 days from the date of receipt of the appeal submission.”


1.     Cover Letter to Appeal to the Minister of Environmental Affairs, dated 21 May 2018
2.  Completed Appeal Form (Regulation 4(2)(a) in GN R993 in GG  38303 of 8 December 2014), dated 21 May 2018
3.       Statement setting out Grounds of Appeal (Regulation 4(2)(b)(i) in GN R993 in GG  38303 of 8 December 2014), dated 21 May 2018
4.  Supporting documentation which is referred to in the appeal submission (Regulation 4(2)(b)(ii) in GN R993 in GG  38303 of 8 December 2014) (Annexures 1 – 27)
5.       ANNEXURE 1: A copy of the Respondent’s negative environmental authorisation decision, dated 30 April 2018
6.       ANNEXURE 2: Sibanye PowerPoint presentation titled “Ezulwini Shaft – Costing Breakdown”, dated March 2018
7.       ANNEXURE 3: Excel spreadsheet with figures on the costs for care and maintenance for Ezulwini mine, dated 16 March 2018
8.       ANNEXURE 4: FBAR and appendices thereto (hardcopy provided to the Minister of Environmental Affairs; electronic copy available at
9.       ANNEXURE 5: Title Page, Synopsis, Index and Checklist Table of the FBAR and Index to Appendices to FBAR, FBAR dated 12 October 2017
10.    ANNEXURE 6: Notice of Motion in the High Court application under Case Number 14778/2018, dated 13 and 16 April 2018
11.    ANNEXURE 7: Order of Court in the High Court application under Case Number 14778/2018, dated 2 May 2018
12.    ANNEXURE 8: Overview of engagements with respect to EMC’s environmental authorisation application from August 2016 leading up to the submission of the FBAR on 12 October 2017:
13.    ANNEXURE 9: Meeting minutes from meeting between Sibanye, J&W and GTT, dated 7 December 2017
14.    ANNEXURE 10: Letter to the DMR from Sibanye, dated 8 February 2018
15.    ANNEXURE 11: Letter to the DMR from J&W, dated 21 February 2018
16.    ANNEXURE 12: J&W’s notification to stakeholders of CBAR, revised CBAR and FBAR document availability
17.    ANNEXURE 13: Letter to EMC from the DMR, letter dated 15 February 2018, received by EMC on 22 February 2018
18.    ANNEXURE 14: Email to Sibanye and J&W from the DMR, email dated 22 February 2018
19.    ANNEXURE 15: Letter to DMR from Sibanye, dated 26 February 2018
20.    ANNEXURE 16: Letter to the DMR from EMC’s attorneys of record, Warburton Attorneys, dated 15 March 2018
21.    ANNEXURE 17: Letter to Sibanye from J&W, dated 12 March 2018 (also attached Warburton Attorneys’ letter to the DMR)
22.    ANNEXURE 18: Letter to Sibanye from Gold Fields South Deep Mine, dated 5 March 2018
23.    ANNEXURE 19: Email from Gold Fields, dated 27 July 2017
24.    ANNEXURE 20: Letter from J&W to DWS, dated 12 October 2017
25.    ANNEXURE 21: Email correspondence between EMC and the Regional Manager, dated 3 May 2018
26.    ANNEXURE 22: Council for Geoscience’s comment sheet, dated 6 September 2017
27.    ANNEXURE 23: Email correspondence between J&W to Council for Geoscience, dated 20 February 2018
28.    ANNEXURE 24: DMR (Mine Health and Safety Directorate) email to the Council for Geoscience, the DWS and the DMR, dated 31 January 2018
29.    ANNEXURE 25: Email correspondence between Council for Geoscience, DMR, Mine Health and Safety Directorate, J&W and SRK
30.    ANNEXURE 26: Email correspondence between Council for Geoscience, J&W, Sibanye and SRK
31.    ANNEXURE 27: FWRDWA minutes, dated 15 March 2018