What is a Buffer Zone?

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Toko
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Re: What is a Buffer Zone?

Post by Toko » Wed Oct 22, 2014 7:05 pm

This will not improve anything, IMO.

Buffer zones will be designed, ja, but then all sorts of developments can still take place if "controlled". Consultation will take place, that's all and then government can give th go-ahead for mining and all developments.

The Vele Colliery is BTW outside (directly bordering) the recently revised Mapungubwe buffer zone which is not gazetted so far. But prospecting takes places within the buffer zone, even within the core area of the WHS (farm Riedel).

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Toko
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Re: What is a Buffer Zone?

Post by Toko » Wed Oct 22, 2014 7:40 pm

How does this government statement sound?
The Mapungubwe site and the buffer zone are legally protected meaning that mining or prospecting will be completely prohibited from taking placing within the property and the buffer zone.
Link
There are over 10 prospecting rights granted on portions within the buffer zone! 0' Will the minister withdraw the prospecting rights?

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Re: What is a Buffer Zone?

Post by Richprins » Wed Oct 22, 2014 7:48 pm

The buffer zone is NOT legally protected...still waiting approval/public input? Unless it happened very fast?

PDZ was approved by .gov in Kruger. 0:
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Re: What is a Buffer Zone?

Post by Toko » Wed Oct 22, 2014 8:16 pm

The new buffer zone does officially not exist so far ;-)

The old (larger) buffer zone was delineated and gazetted in 2009. O** Link

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Re: What is a Buffer Zone?

Post by Toko » Tue Mar 24, 2015 8:52 am

http://www.iol.co.za/news/policies-set- ... REHvvmG_UU

Policies set Cape on fire

March 23 2015 at 04:00pm
By Richard Bryant

The city’s approach to development puts lives and property at risk, says Richard Bryant.

Cape Town - Many Capetonians risked their all in fighting the recent fires that devastated much of the southern Cape Peninsula. They were “heroes”, the Western Cape Premier Helen Zille noted. It was, she added, a term “entirely appropriate in this context”.

One of those “heroes”, Hendrik “Bees” Marais, paid the ultimate price: he was the helicopter pilot who lost his life when he crash-landed in the Cape Point section of the Table Mountain National Park.

Cape Town mayor Patricia de Lille echoed many of our sentiments when she said of Marais: “We salute him and pay tribute to him for the contribution that he made in saving lives and protecting property.”

But what Zille and De Lille have neglected to mention – and this is indeed a terrible irony – is that it was Cape Town’s own developmental policies that put those lives and property at risk in the first place.

The fires raised important issues about the management of the city where it abuts both the proclaimed national park and the protective buffer zone surrounding it.

This is an area that in 2004 was proclaimed by Unesco as part of the Cape Floral Kingdom Protected Areas World Heritage Site.

As the world’s largest and most important natural floral kingdom, this heritage site ranged across the Western Cape and beyond to include the De Hoop Nature Reserve, the Swartberg mountain range and Baviaanskloof in the Eastern Cape.

Here are some 9 000 plant species, about 70% endemic to this region only. Of these, 1 500 species are considered to be threatened.

Obviously, the management of such an asset, especially where it fell within the boundaries of an expanding city, is a complex matter. After the Peninsula fires in 2000, the International Union for the Conservation of Nature, on behalf of Unesco, made two important recommendations regarding the management of the Table Mountain section of this world heritage site.

Firstly, Cape Town’s urban edge should be clearly demarcated and secondly, a protective buffer zone should be proclaimed around the Table Mountain National Park. The acceptance of these conditions resulted in the inscription of the World Heritage Site in 2004 by Unesco and later confirmed by publication in our Government Gazette in January 2009.

This was to curb the impact of urban sprawl into the floral kingdom – and particularly to deal with the fact that fynbos species require regular burning to ensure regeneration and survival. Simply put, it is not a good idea to lay down a suburb next to an open, extremely windy natural area that’s required to be razed from time to time.

But the province and the city now appear to think otherwise. Last year, in developments wholly contradictory to the preservation of this heritage area, the city announced it would no longer recognise an urban edge that impeded upon its development-friendly policies.

As a result, several controversial residential proposals inside the Cape Floral Kingdom’s buffer zone have since been approved. Needless to say, they are not the sort of developments aimed at addressing the country’s critical housing shortage.

They include 109 properties in the Kommetjie area, 90 in the Glencairn valley and, recently, a development at Partridge Point, between Simon’s Town and Smitswinkel Bay.

Bafflingly, these proposals have been enthusiastically supported by SANParks – the very agency mandated with the task of managing and preserving this heritage area.

The fires exposed the folly of all this. Almost exclusively, these recently approved developments are security complexes. Electric fencing separates them from natural areas. These fences greatly hamper firefighting operations.

Instead of containing a natural fynbos fire, firefighters have had to concentrate their efforts on saving properties. Many should not have been there in the first place. Many of these complexes have thatched roofing. How was that allowed?

Inside the residential complexes firefighters were fenced in and unable to deal with wildfires. Aerial photographs show the results all too clearly: green residential areas contrasting dramatically with scorched fynbos.

Zwaanswyk, Tokai, De Goode Hoop area, Noordhoek, Noordhoek Manor, Ou Kaapse Weg.

More of the same – we note the recent erection of 3m high electrified fences around the new Chapman’s Bay development at the bottom of Ou Kaapse Weg.

The city and the province are approving more and more of these developments in the buffer zone, thus further jeopardising a world heritage site. There will be more fires. These properties – and the lives of those who live there – will once more be at risk. They shouldn’t be there.

The same must be said of alien vegetation. There are effective programmes that manage invasive species in the Table Mountain National Park – but none that govern private properties bordering the park and inside the buffer zone.

Environmental bodies have appealed to city and provincial authorities to intervene in this matter, but to no avail. Suspicions are growing that some landowners are deliberately allowing alien vegetation to degrade their environmentally sensitive properties in order to achieve development rights.

The development lobby has significant political and financial muscle – and yet, typically, their efforts only benefit a small minority. None of the outlandish proposals which are being crowbarred into fruition against the southern Peninsula’s wishes will alleviate inequality in any shape or form in the Western Cape. Once unscrupulous and greedy developers get the go-ahead to cover the Cape Floral Kingdom in concrete, that’s it, it’s gone forever.

* Richard Bryant is the chairman of the Kommetjie Heritage Society, set up to protect the built and natural heritage of the south of the Cape Peninsula.

** The views expressed here are not necessarily those of Independent Media.

Weekend Argus

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Re: What is a Buffer Zone?

Post by Richprins » Thu Mar 26, 2015 11:08 am

Interesting, Toko!

Wonder if this is an official buffer zone? :-?
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Re: What is a Buffer Zone?

Post by Toko » Wed Apr 06, 2016 9:32 am

https://www.sanparks.org/about/news/?id=56646

Media Release: Conservation leads rural development

Date: 2016-04-05


In what is potentially a major boost for sustainable development in South Africa, the CEOs of South African National Parks (SANParks) and the Department of Environmental Affairs’ Green Fund, have announced the findings of a two-year pilot that has demonstrated conservation as a growing and value-adding sector within rural development at the Development Bank of South Africa in Midrand on Tuesday, 4 April 2016. SANParks CEO Fundisile said, “whilst traditionally conservation is regarded by many as a ‘trade-off’ with development, the pilots have shown that conservation can actually competitively lead and stimulate development.”

The pilots were undertaken in some of South Africa’s identified biodiversity “hotspots” in the buffer zones of three National Parks in South Africa: Camdeboo, Mountain Zebra and the West Coast National Park.

Buffer Zones are geographical areas delineated around national Parks where the parks directly interface with their broader regional environments. The idea of a Buffer Zone is for planning and conservation authorities to co-operate in facilitating the integration of the Parks within this space through facilitating community benefits from sustainable natural resource management, discouraging economic activity that is incompatible with conservation, and maximising the potential of the park as a regional economic asset.

The pilots were financed by the Department of Environmental Affairs’ Green Fund and implemented through broad partnerships, led by SANParks that included municipalities, provincial conservation authorities, landowners and communities. Some of the demonstration projects that emerged were the:

Upgrading and improved management of a Local Nature Reserve in order to enhance its asset value and social and economic returns. The pilot succeeded in leveraging additional municipal financial commitment and securing SANPark’s technical support for conservation management.
Promotion of urban agriculture in rural towns close to Camdeboo and Mountain Zebra National Parks in order to address chronic hunger through enhancing food security; while at the same time protecting rural land with high biodiversity in the buffer zones of these national parks.
Exploring of the setting up of a “mega nature reserve” on the West Coast through the collaboration of private, community and public landowners focused on unlocking economic opportunity within the eco-tourism, game, conservation and knowledge sectors. At least nine private landowners are proceeding with plans to establish a Special Natural Area on the West Coast.
Promotion of tourism routes, investment and small business activity that would be compatible with conservation. West Coast Way, a highly successful private route marketing platform was established that is focused on promoting the biodiversity and heritage within the region. Undeveloped regional tourism assets have been identified and a partnership forged with provincial trade and investment agencies in order to attract sustainable investment and regional economic activity.
Creation of new tourism attractions and community facilities within national parks in order to enhance the perceived value of the park and to stimulate increased economic return and related activity. Plans are underway to convert an unused military facility in the West Coast National Park into a Science, Visitor and Research Centre that showcases biodiversity, heritage and sustainable development and nurtures maths and science literacy and talent.
Promotion of conservation awareness through innovative mechanisms such a community drama, public works programmes and ongoing engagements. The intention is to highlight the potential social and economic benefits of conservation of biodiversity and heritage to communities.
Mketeni said that all these projects demonstrated that viewing rural development through a ‘conservation-lens’ could unlock economic opportunities within both the conservation and conservation-linked sectors. “The goal is to promote multiple and compatible land-uses within the buffer zones of national parks. The potential for both direct and indirect job creation by the conservation sector is huge.”

The successes of the pilots will be taken forward through the Global Environment Facility (GEF) 5 programme agreement entered into between the South African government and the United National Development Programme that has the prime objective of expanding and improving management of protected areas in South Africa’s biodiversity hotspots through collaboration with the private sector and communities.

“The goal is to establish 197 000ha of new protected area in South Africa in a manner that benefits everyone. SANParks is currently translating the lessons from the pilot into operational guidelines for SANParks to work within the Buffers of all its national parks,” concluded Mketeni.

Issued by:
South African National Parks (SANParks) Corporate Communications
Tel: 012 426 5170

Media Enquiries:
Reynold Thakhuli
SANParks: Acting Head of Communications
Tel: 012 426 5203; Cell: 073 373 4999
E-mail: rey.thakhuli@sanparks.org

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Re: What is a Buffer Zone?

Post by Richprins » Wed Apr 06, 2016 6:13 pm

This is complex. Very little mention is made of the primary conservation mission of DEA, or more significantly SANParks, who are at the helm of it.

On the other hand, more land for conservation is good!

In real terms, the biggest money spinner is Greater Kruger, which is sort of the bottom line.

Buffer zones are a relatively new thing, and IMO designed to prevent private tourist development within sight of a National Park unless sanctioned by SP. In fact that is the policy. The 2 year timespan would suggest to me that processes have been put in place in that period for crony developments to take place in these zones. This applies particularly to hotels at Shangoni, Orpen, Phalaborwa, Punda etc.

Once again, commercialisation is paramount, and social upliftment is not, or should not be, the prime concern of a conservation parastatal.

:ty: Toks!
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