WHEREAS everyone has the constitutional right to have an environment that is not harmful to his or her health and to have the environment protected for the benefit of present and future generations through reasonable legislative and other measures that-

  1. prevent pollution and ecological degradation;
  2. promote conservation; and
  3. secure ecologically sustainable development and use of natural resources while promoting justifiable economic and social development;

AND WHEREAS waste management practices in many areas of the Republic are not conducive to a healthy environment and the impact of improper waste management practices are often borne disproportionately by the poor;

AND WHEREAS poor waste management practices can have an adverse impact both locally and globally;

AND WHEREAS sustainable development requires that the generation of waste is avoided, or where it cannot be avoided, that it is reduced, re-used, ecycled or recovered and only as a last resort treated and safely disposed of;

AND WHEREAS the minimisation of pollution and the use of natural resources through vigorous control, cleaner technologies, cleaner production and consumption practices, and waste minimisation are key to ensuring that the environment is protected from the impact of waste;

AND WHEREAS waste under certain circumstances is a resource and offers economic opportunities;

AND WHEREAS waste and management practices relating to waste are matters that-

  • require national legislation to maintain essential national standards;
  • in order to be dealt with effectively, require uniform norms and standards that apply throughout the Republic; and
  • in order to promote and give effect to the right to an environment that is not harmful to health and well-being, have to apply uniformly throughout the Republic; and
  • require strategies, norms and standards which seek to ensure best waste practices within a system of co-operative governance,

BE IT THEREFORE ENACTED by the Parliament of the Republic of South Africa, as follows:-