Municipal solid waste management in the North West Province : governance strategies to address existing performance gaps and capacity constrains
Alberts, Reece Cronjé
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In order to address the growing waste concerns facing South Africa, the Department of Environmental Affairs (DEA) published the National Waste Management Strategy in 2012. The ultimate aim of the strategy is to effect the realisation of the objectives of the National Environmental Management Waste Act (NEMWA). The NEMWA is a sector environmental law based on the waste management hierarchy and its provisions apply to waste management activities in all three government spheres amongst others. The NWMS provides for eight distinct goals with accompanying targets to be met by 2016. Some of these goals and targets speak directly to the solid waste management mandate of local government. Concerns about the capacity of municipalities to see the execution of this mandate however, raise questions about the likelihood of some NWMS goals and targets being met by 2016. The North West Province serves as a case in point where recent reports by the office of the Auditor General have highlighted significant non-compliance in local government with the provisions of the existing waste law and policy framework of South Africa. It appears form these reports that a number of performance gaps and capacity constraints exist as far as it concerns municipal solid waste management. Against this back ground the study questions the governance strategies necessary within the municipalities of the North West Province to: a) address the existing performance gaps and capacity constraints and b) progressively move towards meeting the NWMS goals and targets as far as it concerns solid waste management. The study will explore the objectives, goals and targets of the NWMS against the background of the National Environmental Management Act (NEMA) and NEMWA, with a specific focus on solid waste management. The study will further review the documented performance gaps and capacity constraints as a far as it concerns solid waste management in municipalities in the North West province, specifically.