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Environment, Rural Development and Natural Resources

Environment, Rural Development and Natural Resources is one of the focus areas identified by the South African Human Rights Commission in order to effectively fulfil its mandate of promoting, protecting and monitoring the realisation of human rights in South Africa.  

Millions of people live in South Africa’s peripheral areas. The word “periphery” aptly captures the geographic, economic, and social reality for all these people. Although approximately 35% of South African households are rural, around 57% of all poor households reside in rural areas.

There is a relationship between a safe and healthy environment and the enjoyment of human rights, as well as the protection of people’s rights in relation to the utilisation of natural resources, whilst also taking into account the significance of international instruments in the realisation of these rights.


•    Commissioner’s Provincial Visit to the Eastern Cape – March 2016.
•    Stakeholder Roundtable Discussion on Underlying Socio-Economic Challenges in Mining-Affected Communities – May 2016
•    Consultations with Mining-Affected Communities in KwaZulu-Natal, Limpopo and Mpumalanga – June and July 2016
•    National Workshop on the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights –September 2016
•    National Investigative Hearing on Challenges in Mining-Affected Communities – September 2016

About us

Understanding PAIA

The Human Rights Commission is the national institution established to support constitutional democracy. It is committed to promote respect for, observance of and protection of human rights for everyone without fear or favour.

27 Stiemens Street, Braamfontein

011 877 3600 (Switchboard)