Investigating groundwater governance arrangements for unconventional gas exploration and production in main Karoo Basin, South Africa
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South Africa relies on coal and imported crude oil for most of its energy. The possible production of shale gas in the main Karoo Basin of South Africa provides a potential opportunity to diversify the primary energy mix. However, shale gas exploration and production is associated with environmental impacts that include potential groundwater contamination. Protecting groundwater resources involves an effective governance regime in place to regulate such risks on groundwater resources. This study made use of a qualitative approach to investigate groundwater governance arrangements in relation to the proposed shale gas development. Further, the study developed and used an analytical framework to assess groundwater governance provisions and capacity at local level for shale gas development.