Drivers of environmental management in the SANDF: a case study of Western Cape Units, 2011-2015

Ncubukezi, Lundi (2019-12)

Thesis (MMil)--Stellenbosch University, 2019.

Thesis

ENGLISH ABSTRACT: The primary function of the South African Department of Defence and Military Veterans (SA DoDMV) is to defend and protect the Republic of South Africa (RSA), its territorial integrity and its people in accordance with the Constitution and the principles of international law regulating the use of force. The South African National Defence Force (SANDF) has military units throughout the country. These units are situated in locations such that they contribute to the primary function of the SA DoDMV. To execute its undertaking, the SANDF requires resources such as land to conduct its activities. Military activities cause physical disturbance to ecosystems. These activities include military training, exercises, peace support operations and the actual conduct of war. Any and all of these activities may have a negative impact on the environment. The Constitution of the Republic of South Africa (Act No. 108 of 1996), Defence Review 1996, 1998 and 2015, White Paper on Defence 1996 and the National Environmental Management Act No. 107 of 1998 (NEMA) mandate responsible environmental management (EM) from all organs of the state. In light of this policy framework, the SA DoDMV has established a broad strategy and several functional strategies for environmental services (ES) in the SANDF. Furthermore, the SANDF has for environmental management (EM) purposes grouped military units into five regions (Western Cape; Eastern Cape and KwaZulu Natal; Free State and Northern Cape; Limpopo; Gauteng and North West). The DoDMV published two editions of environmental implementation plans (EIPs), in 2001 and 2008 respectively. The primary aim of the first edition EIP was to represent an instrument for the promotion of co-operative governance around environmental management. The second followed on the efforts and commitments made in the First Edition EIP, as well as filling in any gaps that were identified. As part of mechanisms for monitoring EM, the SANDF has institutionalised the Environmental Awards Programme (EAP). Military units in the Western Cape Region (WCR) have won more environmental awards than the other four regions in the country combined. The question, therefore, is which drivers are promoting effective environmental management (EEM) in award-winning military units (AWMU) in the WCR. The research statement was that there are drivers in the AWMU in the WCR that promote EEM. The study adopted a qualitative research approach. Desktop study and semi-structured interview methods were employed to collect data. Purposive sampling was used to identify respondents. The desktop study revealed the mechanisms that the SA DoDMV planned to use to address EM issues. Semi-structured interviews were used to investigate the drivers that environmental managers viewed as enabling the EEM. The collected data was analysed using content and thematic analysis. The results indicate that environmental managers view continuous environmental training, employee capacitation, the involvement of employees, external interaction, management support, and commitment as drivers enabling effective EM in the WCR. The findings suggest that it is not just the presence of policies that prompt improved environmental performance, but internal factors too. The outcomes are noteworthy because they indicate what works in AWMU. Other units may use the findings to develop best practices to enhance their own environmental management performance.

AFRIKAANSE OPSOMMING: Geen Afrikaanse opsomming beskikbaar nie.

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