Protected area declarations in Gauteng

Hikers on a winter day in Suikerbosrand Nature Reserve, Gauteng

In 2003, The National Environmental Management: Protected Areas Act was passed. New procedures had to be developed to comply with these new laws during re-proclamation. The Grasslands Programme identified several urban conservation sites that required the strengthening of their protected area status. These areas contribute to achieving provincial biodiversity targets in the Gauteng conservation plan (C-plan) as well as national biodiversity targets. The Grasslands Programme assisted in developing these procedures and piloting them at certain sites. Checklists, application forms, templates and flow charts of the steps that need to be taken prior to proclamation were developed to assist this proclamation process in Gauteng. Biodiversity information, title deeds and property boundaries were collected into a dossier for each of the sites in preparation for their proclamation.

Working with GDARD, there has been good progress in the process for declaration of the first six sites (Alice Glockner Nature Reserve, Marievale Nature Reserve, Colbyn Protected Environment, Faerie Glen Nature Reserve, Suikerbosrand Nature Reserve and Leeuwfontein Nature Reserve), which total 22 165 ha. For more information, contact Abigail Kamineth (GDARD) or Budu Manaka (SANBI).