Introduction  | Activities  |  Legislation  | Licensing  | Plans & Types of Waste  | General  | Hazardous Waste & PLASTICS incl Roadmap to 2025  | Recycling  |                                                 Food Waste & Composting | Training & Carbon footprint  | Research & Statistics


Legislation - Waste Related

Note that most South African legislation may be amended from time to time. It is the reader’s responsibility to check that the latest version of any particular piece of legislation is the latest version.

In South Africa waste management is governed by the:

The Waste Act promotes integrated waste management based on the waste management hierarchy as a means to reduce the amount of waste going to landfill, through waste avoidance, reduction, re-use, recycling, recovery, treatment, and safe disposal as a last resort.

In order to reduce the impact on human health and the environment, the Act also includes minimum requirements and licensing for activities involving the storage, transportation, re-use, recycling, treatment and disposal of waste.


Essential information on landfill design is given in three documents:

1. Minimum Requirements for Waste Disposal by Landfill (Second Edition 1998). Specifically Appendix 8.2 which deals with how to construct the landfill linings described in GN636 below.
2. Government Gazette 37684 of 23 August 2013: (This includes three documents) National Norms and Standards for the following:• GN634 “Waste Classification and Management Regulations” • GN635 “National norms and standards for the assessment of waste for landfill disposal” • GN636 “National norms and standards for disposal of waste to landfill” 3. Technical Advisory Practice Note: Capping closure of waste management facilities and pollution point sources

Refer to:

Specific legislation, regulations, policies, norms and standards are referred to in the relevant sections.

Legislation - General

Apart from specific waste legislation, the waste management sector is regulated by the following legislation:

  • The South African Constitution (Act 108 of 1996)

  • Hazardous Substances Act (Act 5 of 1973)

  • Health Act (Act 63 of 1977)

  • Environment Conservation Act (Act 73 of 1989)

  • Occupational Health and Safety Act (Act 85 of 1993)

  • National Water Act (Act 36 of 1998)

  • The National Environmental Management Act (Act 107 of 1998)

  • Municipal Structures Act (Act 117 of 1998)

  • Municipal Systems Act (Act 32 of 2000)

  • Mineral and Petroleum Resources Development Act (Act 28 of 2002)

  • Air Quality Act (Act 39 of 2004)

  • National Environmental Management: Waste Act, 2008 (Act 59 of 2008)

  • National Environmental Management: Waste Amendment Act, 2014 (Act 26 of 2014)

Copies of this legislation are available at Acts Online

Contact us

Sanki Tshabangu: info@iwmsa.co.za
Nicolle de Bruyn: iwmsa@iwmsa.co.za
Ann Oosthuizen: ann@iwmsa.co.za

Tel: 011 675 3462

Postal Address: PO Box 31061 |Totiusdal | 0134