A REPORT ON A HERITAGE IMPACT ASSESSMENT FOR A PROPOSED NEW OVERHEAD POWERLINE FROM THE BLACK ROCK MINE TO THE GLORIA MINE, CLOSE TO HOTAZEL, NORTHERN CAPE PROVINCE
Archaetnos cc was appointed by EScience Associates (Pty) Ltd to conduct a cultural heritage study for the Black Rock Mining Operations (BRMO) who proposes to install an overhead powerline line from Black Rock Mine to the Gloria Mine ventilation fans to maintain adequate supply to the ventilation fans. The ventilation fans are critical to safe underground operations. The line rating will not exceed 33KV.
BRMO is situated in the Northern Cape Province approximately 80 km north-west of the town of Kuruman and 12 kilometres north-west of Hotazel. BRMO falls within the jurisdiction of the John Taolo Gaetsewe District Municipality.
A survey of literature was undertaken in order to obtain background information regarding the area. The field survey was conducted according to generally accepted HIA practices and was aimed at locating all possible objects, sites and features of cultural significance in the area of proposed development.
One site of cultural heritage importance was identified, namely a Stone Age site. However decontextualized stone tools were also identified in the study area.
The final recommendations are as follows:
- The one site identified (Site no. 10) is an MSA and LSA site. It receives a field rating of Local Grade IIIB and should thus be included in the heritage register. It may be mitigated, which would consist of systematical collection of artefacts. This mitigation is subject to a permit application lodged with the relevant heritage
- However, since there will be no impact on the site it should be left in situ.
- Although it is unlikely that the site will be impacted on, the mine needs to ensure that this remain the case by staying at least 20 m away from it.
- This report is therefore seen as ample mitigation and the development may therefore continue, but only after receiving the necessary approval from SAHRA.
- It should be remembered that due to archaeological sites being subterranean in essence, it is possible that all cultural sites may not have been identified. Care should therefore be taken when development work commences that, if any more artifacts are uncovered, a qualified archaeologist be called in to investigate.
- Proposed management measures for potential impacts, which should be followed as heritage protocol and Chance Find Procedure :
- Loose stone tools found are usually of minor significance and should just be left as it is.
- Areas where a substantial number of stone tools are found together should be geo-referenced and left alone until such time as an archaeologist can visit the site to determine its significance.
- Although chances of finding Iron Age remains are slim, it should be treated similar to the above. Potshards found out of context should be left alone, but areas with stone walling or substantial pottery and other cultural remains should be geo-referenced and left alone until investigated by an archaeologist.
- All buildings and remains of buildings and other structures believed to be older than 60 years should be geo-referenced and left alone until and a heritage expert can be called in to determine the cultural significance thereof.
- Graves should be left in situ, geo-referenced and left alone until investigated by an archaeologist.
- Should any of the above be identified, the area should be demarcated to ensure no impact until further investigation has been done.
Prof. A.C. van Vollenhoven (L. Akad. S.A.)
Accredited member of ASAPA
Accredited member of SASCH
Johan Smit, BA (Hons)