A report on a cultural heritage impact assessment for the proposed Waterval Retrofit E-Feed project at the Rustenburg Platinum Mines Limited (RPM) located in the Northwest ProvinceSummary
Archaetnos cc was requested by WSP Environmental (Pty) Ltd (WSP) to conduct a cultural heritage impact assessment (HIA) for the proposed Waterval Retrofit E-feed Project (Propose Project). The mine forms part of the Rustenburg Platinum Mines Limited (RPM) who are wholly owned by Anglo American Platinum Limited.
The Proposed Project site is situated close to and to the east of the town of Rustenburg and to the north of the town of Kroondal in the Northwest Province. For the development two alternatives were considered and both of these were investigated.
A survey of the available literature was undertaken in order to obtain background information regarding the Proposed Project area and the area surrounding the mine. This was followed by the field survey which was conducted according to generally accepted HIA practices, aimed at locating all possible objects, sites and features of cultural significance in the Proposed Project area.
All sites, objects features and structures identified were to be documented according to the general minimum standards accepted by the archaeological profession. Co-ordinates of individual localities were determined by means of a Global Positioning System. The information was added to photographs and the description in order to facilitate the identification of each locality.
During the HIA survey one site of cultural heritage significance was identified at alternative1, but none at the preferred alternative. The site is a grave yard, along the proposed route for the pipeline. Therefore, from a cultural historical perspective, the preferred alternative would be a better option. It should however be stated that alternative 1 may also be decided upon since the impact on the grave site will only be secondary and could be mitigated easily.
In the opinion of the HIA consultant the Proposed Project may commence. It should be noted however, that whichever alternative is chosen, the subterranean presence of archaeological and/or historical sites, features or artifacts is always a possibility. As such, care should be taken when the construction phase of the Proposed Project commences. If any historical sites, features or artifacts are discovered, a qualified archaeologist should be commissioned to investigate.
It is also important to take cognisance of the applicant’s responsibility to submit this report via the SAHRIS System on the South African Heritage Resource Agency (SAHRA) website. No work on site may commence before receiving the necessary comments from the SAHRA.
Dr. A.C. van Vollenhoven (L.AKAD.SA.)