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Saliem Fakir

Saliem Fakir

Fakir is the head of the Living Planet Unit at the World Wildlife Fund South Africa. The unit's work is focused on identifying ways to manage a transition to a low-carbon economy.

Taking the green out of economy

22nd September 2017 There is only one economy, not two. The challenge all societies face today is leaving behind the legacy of an old system. How do we embark on a systems change – a shift from System A to System B? Fundamentally, it is a shift in production and consumption systems. How do we interlink the two to... 

Enviro rights entail more than just the environment

18th August 2017 It is important to review where we have come from over the past 20 years and how much has been achieved in that time. South Africa's Constitution makes provision for environmental protection in its Bill of Rights. This follows a long history of environmental issues not having been treated with... 

Decolonising the green economy

4th August 2017 On June 13, a good agent provocateur, former National Planning Commission member Mike Muller, proposed in a panel discussion at a Trade and Industrial Policy Strategies (TIPS) conference on sustainable growth and industrialisation that we should decolonise the idea of the green economy. Muller... 

Is science losing its authority?

16th June 2017 Scientists have, for a long time, been held in high esteem. Yet scientist struggle to effectively mediate evidenced-based outcomes in highly politicised and contested public policy issues, such as those concerning climate science or whether cellphone cause cancer. The Internet is flattening... 

New vision needed for conservation

26th May 2017 A friend of mine, Mark Halle, argues that the world of conservation is going nowhere and that a new vision is needed to take it out of its maelstrom. I agree and often solutions are not found in defensive postures but in the offensive realm. Three things will determine the future of conservation... 

Political entrepreneurship in the energy sector

5th May 2017 The expediency for rent-seeking that comes with large capital infrastructure projects is always lurking behind the scenes. The extent to which long fingers can grab as much as possible is largely dependent on procurement design and the ability to complete projects on budget. The more the cost... 

What can we tell of Eskom’s future from the Denton report?

3rd March 2017 The debate on the independent power producer (IPP) programme can serve as a useful distraction, and power utility Eskom is exploiting it to the full. The problem is not the IPPs, and they never will be. IPPs are a scapegoat to obfuscate the many long-term multiple challenges Eskom faces, which it... 

Going beyond the Limits to Growth debate

10th February 2017 The Limits to Growth (LTG) thesis was developed in the 1970s by a group of experts collectively called the Club of Rome. They used a computer (at that time, they did not have sufficient data or the computing power that we have today) model to link exponential population growth, income/gross... 

Why the future need not be so bleak

27th January 2017 Sometimes environmental dystopia can obscure progress. As the global climate negotiation process moves along, it is interesting to see how the climate change and fossil fuel debate is beginning to reshape our world. Change may happen faster and more disruptively than we may think. Here is a... 

Climate change in the Donald Trump era

9th December 2016 Donald Trump's Presidency will, no doubt, have a significant impact on the progress on collective action on the climate change front. The US President-elect has promised to rip apart any semblance that climate change is real. It is said that, in Morocco, the incumbent US climate negotiating team,... 

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