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From Pioneer To Pragmatist Or Pariah: Are South Africa's Recent Water Law Developments Compatible With Its Obligations Under The Un Watercourses Convention?

World Water Congress 2015 Edinburgh Scotland
15. Water law
Author(s): Remy Kinna


Keyword(s): Sub-theme 15: Water law,


Keywords: Transboundary watercourse, South Africa, water law, international river, governance. Abstract: South Africa was one of the inaugural signatories to the United Nations Convention on the Non-Navigational Uses of International Watercourses (UNWC). With the UNWC entering into force in August 2014, it is thus timely to evaluate how compatible it is with legal regimes that have developed to govern South Africa's transboundary watercourses. This paper firstly examines the development of domestic and international legal regimes governing South Africa's transboundary watercourses since signing the UNWC. It then compares these laws in relation to the UNWC, specifically regarding the nation's main transboundary watercourse basins: Orange-Senqu Rivers; Incomati-Maputo Rivers; and Limpopo River. In conclusion, the compatibility of South Africa's legal developments with the UNWC will be critically evaluated along with how this and other crucial current and future water issues will influence governance of its transboundary basins and regional water resources. Dellapenna, J.W., 2001. The customary international law of transboundary fresh waters, International Journal of Global Environmental Issues, 1 (3/4), 264

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