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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:An historical assessment of NGO efficiency in progressing towards a sustainable environmental heritage focus, with as case study the Wonderfontein Spruit catchment, Gauteng
Author:Van Eeden, Elize S.
Periodical:New contree: a journal of historical and human sciences for Southern Africa
Geographic term:South Africa
Abstract:The current disastrous environmental status of the Wonderfontein Spruit catchment area in the Merafong municipal area of South Africa, formerly part of the Gatsrand ward in the Potchefstroom district, is a micro-example of ecological ignorance. The article focuses on the extent to which NGOs adhered to their organizations' constitutional principles, their own moral attitudes, and the pleas of the community, to address environmental concerns in this area. NGOs, nationally and legally acknowledged, and with an indirect focus on the Wonderfontein Spruit catchment area, are the Chronicle Group, Green Cross, Groundwork, Legal Resource Centre, Pelindaba, Working Group, WESSA, and Earthlife Africa. They have been active mainly since the 1990s, predominantly as individual whistle-blowers, with no special effort to address the actions of those polluting the environment, essentiall the gold mining industry. Ways of addressing polluters' actions and environmental issues in general differed from individual to individual and from group to group, contributing to the limited success in consolidating primary environmental stakeholders as the interested or injured parties. Individuals also realized that as long as NGOs rely on the polluter's money in one way or another to survive as an organization, it is difficult to act independently. Notes, ref., sum. in Afrikaans. [ASC Leiden abstract]