Zimbabwe, Zambia

Kariba & Middle Zambezi

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Minister gives green light for Kangaluwi Copper Project in Lower Zambezi National Park

Posted on 26 January 2014

 

Lower Zambezi National Park (Image Credit: Zambia Tourism)

Minister gives green light for Kangaluwi Copper Project in Lower Zambezi National Park

Zambezi Resources Ltd announced recently that Lands, Natural Resources and Environmental Protection Minister Larry Kalaba has overturned the Zambia Environmental Management Agency’s rejection of its Environmental Impact Study and given the green light for Zambezi Resources Ltd to proceed with the Kangaluwi Copper Project in the Lower Zambezi National Park, Zambia. The Park was being considered as a potential World Heritage Site by UNESCO.

In a letter dated January 17, 2014, addressed to Mwembeshi Resources Managing Director, Kalaba stated that he had carefully considered the submitted grounds of appeal against ZEMA's rejection.

"I have also carefully considered each and every ground of rejection given by the ZEMA board. In exercise of powers conferred on me by section 115 subsections 1, 2 and 3 of the environmental management Act, I have decided to approve the project on the following grounds," Kalaba stated. "Firstly, the project should go ahead because it will eventually create employment for ordinary people in the area. Secondly, there are currently available cost-effective technologies and methods to adequately address all the identified negative impacts that may arise from this project and lastly, wildlife management in the area will be enhanced and conserved by the proposed managed scheme contained in your submissions. By copy of this letter...liaise with ZEMA for them to issue a decision letter with all the appropriate conditions under which the project will operate."

Zambezi Resources Chairman, Mr David Vilensky welcomed the Zambian Government’s decision, complimenting the Zambian Government in allowing the Kangaluwi Copper Project to proceed within the National Park as part of its revised Mineral Resources Development Policy which seeks to strike a fair balance between the benefits of mining and the protection of the environment and wildlife conservation, provided its policies and laws are respected and adhered to and such investments will create employment opportunities for ordinary Zambians.

However in 2008, Chieftainess Chiawa (Chiawa/Kafue) Chiefs Chipepo, Simamba, Sinadambwe (of Siavonga district), and Chiefs Mupuka and Mburuma (Luangwa) had met and issued an historic statement against mining for their 17 chiefdoms over the Zambezi system.

More on this issue from the Zambezi Traveller
A conflict of interests? (June 2013)
Mining in National Park thrown out (Dec 2012)

Sources:
The Lusaka Times - Lands minister overturns Zambia Enviroment Management agency ruling and allows mining in Lower Zambezi National Park (22 Jan 2014).
The Lusaka Times - Lower Zambezi National park was due to be declared World Heritage site (23 Jan 2014).
The Zambian Post - Kalaba approves mining project in Lower Zambezi Park (23 Jan 2014).

Recent Updates:
The Zambian Post - Govt approval of Lower Zambezi mining project treacherous (26 Jan 2014)
The Zambian Post - Ngoma backs Lower Zambezi mining (28 Jan 2014)
The Lusaka Times - Injunction against Mining in Lower Zambezi successfully lodged at the High Court (03 Feb 2014)
The Lusaka Times - Zambezi Resources promises to build the cleanest, greenest and safest copper mine ever built in the Lower Zambezi (03 Feb 2014)