Shell and its SA partner, Impact Oil and Gas, have lost their appeal over exploration rights on the Wild Coast, in a long-running case that strikes at the core of the national struggle to balance environmental stewardship and energy needs.

The Supreme Court of Appeal (SCA) dismissed the majority of the companies’ and energy minister Gwede Mantashe’s appeal bids on Monday, upholding a previous court ruling that deemed Shell’s exploration rights off the Wild Coast as unlawful. The lower court found that Shell and its partner had not adequately engaged with the local fishing communities, who depend on the marine environment for their livelihoods...

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