Terry Winstanley - Cliffe Dekker Hofmeyr

Terry Winstanley

Listed in Best Lawyers since 2010
Phone: 27 21 481 6332

Terry completed her articles in Durban in 1991 after which she worked for a large law firm in Durban. In 1997 she established the first boutique environmental law firm in South Africa based in Cape Town, through which entity she practised for 11 years.  She joined Cliffe Dekker (as it then was) in 2008.


Terry has worked exclusively in environmental law and policy in Southern Africa for the last 22 years. She specialises in the environmental legal aspects of pollution control, environmental impact assessment, mining and water law and regularly conducts pre-acquisition due diligence exercise and advises potential purchasers and/or lenders on environmental liability arising out of the transaction. Terry has also advised various clients on the establishment of renewable energy generation facilities including solar and wind driven operations.


Terry has provided guidance on the legal aspects of environmental impact assessment to the City of Cape Town (for the establishment of the Berg River Dam and a regional landfill site); for Transnet (for the construction of the multiproduct pipeline from Durban to Cape Town); BHP Billiton (for the expansion of one of its aluminium smelters in Richards Bay) and VTTI (a petrochemicals multinational, for the construction of a terminal in Cape Town's harbour).


Terry's government clients include national, provincial and local governments including those of Namibia, South Africa, Swaziland, the Western Cape, KwaZulu Natal, Cape Town, Durban, Johannesburg and Richards Bay. She acts for parastatals such as ACSA. Eskom and Transnet. Her commercial clients include EnviroServ, Harmony, Sappi, Sasol and Xtrata.


Rated by Practical Law Company as leading South African environmental lawyer 2005 to 2012 (when the publication ceased to exist).

Described by the Cross Border Environmental Law Handbook as "the doyenne of environmental law in South Africa".


Nominated as a Top Woman Executive in the Top Women in Business and Government Awards 2010


The Legal 500 Europe, Africa, Middle East series, 2009 and 2010 has named Terry as "one of South Africa's foremost environmental disputes specialists"


Expert Guides – Guide to the World's Leading Environmental Lawyers, 2010: Terry is nominated by in-house counsel and peers as one of the pre-eminent practitioners in the world


Global Directory of Who's Who 2009/2010 edition has recognised Terry for outstanding business and professional achievements


Additional Information

  • In multi-disciplinary environmental impact assessment teams for the construction of the Berg River Dam; Transnet’s multi product pipeline from Durban to Johannesburg; and a regional landfill site for City of Cape Town.
  • Provides advice on the regulatory and compliance aspects of environmental, occupational, health and safety law.
  • Advising on potential environmental, health and safety liability in pre-acquisition due diligence exercises for local and foreign clients and drafting related contractual provisions.
  • Providing legal input into the implementation of ISO 14001 accredited environmental management systems.
  • Assisting various clients in legal compliance following emergency pollution incidents.
  • Giving advice to developers and lenders on environmental legal aspects of the government initiated Independent Power Producers Programme.
  • Advising regional, national, provincial and local governments on the development of environmental law and policy and drafting those policies
  • Providing environmental legal expertise in litigation and arbitrations.
  • Clients include the Airport Company of South Africa, BHP Billiton subsidiaries, the City of Cape Town, EnviroServ, Sappi and Sasol.
  • University of KwaZulu-NatalLL.B University of KwaZulu-NatalLL.M
    Cape Law Society

    Office Location

    11 Buitengracht Street
    P.O. Box 695
    Cape Town, 8000
    South Africa

    Practice Areas

    Environmental Law