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Ugandan ambassador says GMOs key to poverty eradication

By: Anine Kilian     16th October 2015 The Ugandan Parliament is debating a Bill on biotechnology and biosafety for food production, which could be drafted into law in 2016, Ugandan Ambassador to South Africa Julius Peter Moto said at an event hosted by nonprofit biotechnology stakeholders association AfricaBio to highlight the Water... 

The promises of GM crops remain unfulfilled

By: Creamer Media Reporter      9th October 2015 By Haidee Swanby There has been a recent flurry of media promoting genetically modified (GM) crops as the answer to food security and environmental challenges. However, the proof is in the pudding. After almost two decades of cultivating GM crops in in this country, South Africans are hungrier... 

Monsanto says GMOs will meet future food demands  

By: Tracy Hancock     8th October 2015 Although honourable, Monsanto South Africa MD Kobus Steenkamp does not see organic farming reaching a stage where it will provide 100% food security, highlighting the ability of genetically modified organisms (GMOs) to increase the yield of every hectare. “Our main focus is on increasing... 

New technologies expected to transform oceanic activities

By: Keith Campbell     25th September 2015 New technologies promise to transform the economic, scientific and environmental of "ocean space" by humanity. This is the view expressed in the recent Global Marine Technology Trends 2030 report, drawn up by three British institutions – marine classification and business and technology services... 

SA’s solar programme a ‘game changer’, says Davies 

By: African News Agency      23rd September 2015 Minister of Trade and Industry Rob Davies said on Tuesday that South Africa’s solar energy programme (SEP) would deliver a quarter of the country’s renewable energy by 2030 and should be recognised as a game changer that would create opportunities for communities. Davies, speaking during a visit... 

US biofuels consumption saved significant carbon emissions in past decade

     18th September 2015 Based on analysis done by the Biotechnology Industry Organisation (Bio), in the past decade, the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) programme’s requirement to substitute biofuels for fossil fuels has displaced nearly 1.9-billion barrels of foreign oil and reduced US transportation-related carbon... 

Solaris biofuel crop in Limpopo certified as sustainable

By: Keith Campbell     18th September 2015 The Roundtable on Sustainable Biomaterials (RSB) has certified the Solaris biofuel feedstock plant grown in South Africa and used to produce jet biofuel. Solaris is a variety of the tobacco plant, but without any nicotine and not developed through modern genetic modification processes. “Project... 

Accelerating technology to transform global shipping by 2030

By: Keith Campbell     18th September 2015 Continuing rapid technological innovation and development is likely to transform all aspects of the global maritime sector over the next 15 years. This is the thrust of a report published last month, Global Marine Technology Trends 2030. This analysis was jointly developed by the Lloyd’s Register... 

Limpopo biofuel crop certified as sustainable

By: Keith Campbell     2nd September 2015 The Roundtable on Sustainable Biomaterials (RSB) has certified the Solaris biofuel feedstock plant grown in South Africa and used to produce jet biofuel. Solaris is a variety of the tobacco plant, but without any nicotine and not developed through modern genetic modification processes. “Project... 

Canadian research councils partner, to include mining and minerals sectors

By: Megan van Wyngaardt     17th July 2015 The National Research Council of Canada (NRC) and the Saskatchewan Research Council (SRC) has entered a partnership to provide tools and expertise to Canadian firms, to translate research and development from the laboratory to the marketplace. Together, the research companies would grow the local... 

Scientists lauded for contribution to research fields, economy

By: Megan van Wyngaardt     10th July 2015 Tying in with Science and Technology Minister Naledi Pandor’s mission that science should be used to create wealth, thereby creating jobs and eradicating poverty, the seventeenth National Science and Technology Forum (NSTF) Awards Gala Dinner was held to celebrate such contributions. In... 

CSIR outlines biotechnology commercialisation ambitions

By: Zandile Mavuso     5th June 2015 Ecofriendly biotechnology company OptimusBio, created under the auspices of the Council of Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR), is expected to manufacture biotechnology products for commercial use in wastewater treatment, aquaculture and agriculture in the next two years. The company, led... 

Thomson Reuters analysis shows concerning trend for global innovation

     28th May 2015 The Intellectual Property & Science business of Thomson Reuters, the world’s leading provider of intelligent information for businesses and professionals, announced the launch of its State of Innovation website: stateofinnovation.com. This is a global destination for authoritative innovation... 

Team work key to success in growing fleet

     27th May 2015 WHEN  Lebo Joe Theko joined a giant  biotechnology company Monsanto South Africa 25 years ago, it had a fleet of 20 vehicles. Little did the young procurement officer know then that the fleet would grow to ten times that number and, furthermore, that he would one day manage it. Mr Theko has seen... 

Watson-Marlow Fluid Technology Group acquires ASEPCO Corporation

     13th April 2015 Watson-Marlow Fluid Technology Group strengthens its biopharmaceutical offering through the acquisition of ASEPCO® Corporation. Watson-Marlow Fluid Technology Group, the world leader in niche peristaltic pumps and associated fluid path technologies, has acquired Asepco through its parent company... 

WWF report supporting tool for challenged SA agriculture sector

By: Tracy Hancock     10th April 2015 South Africa’s agriculture sector is at a significant crossroads, facing numerous challenges and increasing limitations, including depleted soils and overextracted and polluted water reserves, highlights World Wide Fund for Nature South Africa’s (WWF-SA) 2015 Farming Facts and Futures report:... 

Polymicro Technologies Optical Fibre Bundle Assemblies

     9th April 2015 Molex Incorporated recently launched its Polymicro Technologies™ Optical Fibre Bundle Assemblies. The bundle assemblies are custom configured for scientific and industrial optical requirements, including biotechnology and pharmaceutical diagnostic equipment, semiconductor fabrication and... 

Brics science ministers meet in Brazil

By: SANews, SA government news service     18th March 2015 Science and Technology Minister Naledi Pandor has joined her Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa (Brics) counterparts in Brazil for a two-day science, technology and Innovation (STI) ministerial meeting. The first Brics STI Ministerial Meeting was held in Cape Town last year, in line... 

GMO crops can drive development, proponents argue

By: Sashnee Moodley     13th March 2015 In the field of biotechnology (biotech), South Africa is the leader in Africa, having realised an economic gain of $1.15-billion between 1998 and 2012 from the use of genetically modified (GM) crops or biotech crops. 

Umbilical cord stem cells helping to cure up to 70 diseases

By: Schalk Burger     6th March 2015 Stored haemopoietic stem cells drawn from the umbilical cord are currently being used to treat seventy diseases, including leukaemia and sickle-cell anaemia. However, these stem cells and other placental tissue cells may be used to treat many diverse diseases and health conditions in future. 

A call to industry to launch a South African synchrotron light source initiative

By: Creamer Media Reporter      27th February 2015 In a recent letter to the editor that I sent to Engineering News (Concerns regarding South African portion of Square Kilometre Array) and in a follow-up article elaborating further (We must start preparations to build our own synchrotron light source), I stated my belief that the spending of our... 

CSIR’s biotechnology spin-out company wins prestigious new product award at an international science exhibition

     26th February 2015 ReSyn Biosciences, a biotechnology spin-out company from the Council of Scientific and Industrial Research, has won a prestigious new product award at the Society for Lab Automation and Screening conference for its range of innovative MagReSyn® products, which help scientists find disease... 

South Africa leads continent in terms of GMO crops  

By: Sashnee Moodley     24th February 2015 In the field of biotechnology (biotech), South Africa is the leader in Africa, having realised an economic gain of $1.15-billion between 1998 and 2012 from the use of genetically modified (GM) crops or biotech crops. 

Mintek bioleach propriety installed in Finland

By: Creamer Media Reporter      20th January 2015 Amsterdam-headquartered talc producer Mondo Minerals and South Africa’s State-owned Council for Mineral Technology (Mintek) are currently constructing a Mintek-developed nickel sulphide bioleach plant at Mondo’s Vuonos talc processing site, in Finland. This followed the conclusion of a licence... 

Biocontrol sting operation to fight ‘pest wasp’ invasion of SA forests

By: Irma Venter     5th December 2014 One tiny Australian wasp is killing another tiny Australian wasp in South Africa’s commercial forests – and it is a good thing. Leptocybe invasa, the bad guy in this story, was first spotted in Eucalyptus trees outside its native Australia in 2000, in Israel, says the University of Pretoria (UP)... 

Pandor to open high-tech nanotechnology facility at Rhodes

By: Natalie Greve     10th November 2014 Science and Technology Minister Naledi Pandor is set to officially open the Centre for Nanotechnology Innovation at Rhodes University, in Grahamstown, on November 14, placing the institution at the forefront of international nanotechnology research. The centre will house new nanotechnology... 

Aussie bug war staged to safeguard SA’s commercial forests

By: Irma Venter     31st October 2014 One tiny Australian wasp is killing another tiny Australian wasp in South Africa’s commercial forests – and it is a good thing. Leptocybe invasa, the bad guy in this story, was first spotted in Eucalyptus trees outside its native Australia in 2000, in Israel, says the University of Pretoria (UP)... 

UK-South Africa Newton Fund: a science and innovation partnership

     9th September 2014 The United Kingdom and South Africa are determined to take their already strong science and innovation relationship to the next level and have therefore agreed to launch a fund embodying this partnership based on the principles of co-ownership and co-responsibility.  The UK-South Africa Newton... 

Strong demand for space in Innovation Hub’s biotech park

By: Irma Venter     4th July 2014 Phase 1 of the Innovation Hub’s Biopark@Gauteng is already filled to capacity, says Innovation Hub research, development and innovation GM Dr Boitumelo Semete-Makokotlela. The ten companies in Phase 1 of the Life Sciences Enterprise project will be able to move into the park in the third quarter... 

Arup Reveals a Vision of the Future of Rail

     27th June 2014 A new report by Arup, the global engineering and design consultancy, reveals a vision of the future of rail travel in light of trends such as urban population growth, climate change and emerging technologies. Future of Rail 2050 foresees predictive maintenance of rail lines by robot drones;... 

Misguided aversion to fossil fuels poses malnutrition and starvation threat 

By: Kelvin Kemm     27th June 2014 People are exposed all the time to a barrage of propaganda about global warming.  Very few even know of the existence of numerous short cold periods, or Little Ice Ages, that have occurred. The most recent one occurred at the time of William Shakespeare and Jan van Riebeeck. In fact, some... 

Innovation Hub’s Biopark to open in third quarter

By: Irma Venter     19th June 2014 Phase 1 of the Innovation Hub’s Biopark@Gauteng is already filled to capacity, says Innovation Hub research, development and innovation GM Dr Boitumelo Semete-Makokotlela. The ten companies in Phase 1 of the Life Sciences Enterprise project will be able to move into the park in the third quarter... 

SA should make more use of Unesco science opportunities

By: Keith Campbell     6th June 2014 The Department of Science and Technology (DST) would like South African researchers to make better use of the opportunities provided by the country's membership of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation (Unesco). The DST is South Africa's designated lead department... 

African company wins innovation award

By: Jonathan Rodin     23rd May 2014 Nonprofit organisation (NPO) The African Innovation Foundation (AIF), which mobilises innovators across Africa, has named biotechnology research and development company Altis Biologics CEO Dr Nicolaas Duneas and business development CE Nuno Peres, from South Africa, as the winners of the... 

R17.5m Anglo project to improve, accelerate mine rehabilitation

By: Chantelle Kotze     23rd April 2014 Diversified miner Anglo American’s thermal coal business, Anglo Thermal Coal, has developed and patented a bioconversion technology that it believes could significantly reduce the cost and improve the rate and quality of opencast mine rehabilitation. 

Amid technical and financial concerns, SA moves ahead with biofuels strategy

By: Schalk Burger     21st March 2014 While the food-versus-fuel dilemma remains, South Africa is moving ahead with the roll-out of its much debated biofuels strategy, which even received a mention in President Jacob Zuma’s February State of the Nation address, when he confirmed that biofuels manufacturers had been selected and had... 

Amid technical and financial concerns, SA moves ahead with biofuels strategy 

By: Schalk Burger     21st March 2014 While the food-versus-fuel dilemma remains, South Africa is moving ahead with the roll-out of its much debated biofuels strategy, which even received a mention in President Jacob Zuma's February State of the Nation address, when he confirmed that biofuels manufacturers had been selected and had... 

Higher Education in Science & Technology Critical for Africa’s Future, say Rwanda's President Kagame, WB's Makhtar Diop

     18th March 2014 At a high-level forum in the Rwandan capital, H.E. President Kagame, President of Rwanda and World Bank Vice President for Africa Makhtar Diop highlighted Africa’s urgent need for larger numbers of scientists, engineers, and technicians who can meet the growing market demand for such expertise... 

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