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THE PROTECTION OF ENVIRONMENTAL INTERESTS THROUGH CORPORATE GOVERNANCE: A SOUTH AFRICAN COMPANY LAW PERSPECTIVE

Anthony O Nwafor

DOI: 10.22495/cbv11i2art1

Abstract

The quest to maximize profits by corporate administrators usually leaves behind an unhealthy environment. This trend impacts negatively on long term interests of the company and retards societal sustainable development. While there are in South Africa pieces of legislation which are geared at protecting the environment, the Companies Act which is the principal legislation that regulates the operations of the company is silent on this matter. The paper argues that the common law responsibility of the directors to protect the interests of the company as presently codified by the Companies Act should be developed by the courts in South Africa, in the exercise of their powers under the Constitution, to include the interests of the environment. This would guarantee the enforcement of the environmental interests within the confines of the Companies Act as an issue of corporate governance.

Keywords: Environment, Directors, Companies, Corporate governance, Common Law, Constitution

How to cite this paper: Nwafor, A. O. (2015). The protection of environmental interests through corporate governance: A South African company law perspective. Corporate Board: role, duties and composition, 11(2), 8-20. http://doi.org/10.22495/cbv11i2art1

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