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South Africa

South Africa

Constitution of the Republic of South Africa (1993)

Chapter 3, Section 29:

“Every person shall have the right to an environment which is not detrimental to his or her health or well-being.”

*This environmental rights provision was moved to Chapter 2, Article 24 in the 1996 Constitution of the Republic of South Africa, where it was expanded to read: “Everyone has the right – (a) to an environment that is not harmful to their health or well-being; and (b) to have the environment protected, for the benefit of present and future generations, through reasonable legislative and other measures that – (i) prevent pollution and ecological degradation; (ii) promote conservation; and (iii) secure ecologically sustainable development and use of natural resources while promoting justifiable economic and social development.”

Chapter 10, Section 175(3):

“A local government shall, to the extent determined in any applicable law, make provision for access by all persons residing within its area of jurisdiction to water, sanitation, transportation facilities, electricity, primary health services, education, housing and security within a safe and healthy environment, provided that such services and amenities can be rendered in a sustainable manner and are financially and physically practicable.”*

*The right to water was expanded in the 1996 Constitution of the Republic of South Africa, where it was moved to Chapter 2, Article 27, where it reads: “Everyone has the right to have access to-
b. sufficient food and water;”