Draft Regulation for the Management of Mercury
The South African Department of Forestry, Fisheries and the Environment has issued a draft national regulation on the management and general regulation of mercury.
The regulation will translate the Minamata Convention on Mercury into South African law.
With the ratification of the Convention in 2019, South Africa has agreed to domesticate all the objectives and requirements in the Convention and its annexes. This includes the phasing out of mercury added products, phasing down dental amalgam, and regulating mercury storage facilities. Any future additions of products to the annexures of the Minamata Convention will also have to be translated into national law.
This is part of South Africa’s broader efforts to amend and extend large parts of its National Environmental Management Act. In the past few years, the country has introduced multiple regulations on environmental issues including chemicals and waste management, air quality, and extended producer responsibility schemes.
The law shall come into force on 1 April 2024 with the phase-out of relevant mercury products commencing a year later. The text of the draft regulation can be viewed HERE.