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Climate Change News

Global monitoring system for biodiversity needed

By: Natasha Odendaal     18th January 2013 Research into biodiversity and human society could be improved through the development of a global biodiversity monitoring system similar to the system implemented to monitor climate change, the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) said. Questions such as what fraction of... 

Adaptation planning needed to protect poor from climate risks – study 

By: Natalie Greve     10th January 2013 Communities with low socioeconomic status based on income, education and housing would be the most vulnerable to the effects of climate change, a new Water Research Commission (WRC) study showed. 

SA and world urged to accelerate carbon-capture efforts 

By: Terence Creamer     9th January 2013 South Africa, which relies primarily on coal to produce most of its electricity, is set to raise the profile of its carbon capture and storage (CCS) initiatives in 2013, amid a call from the International Energy Agency (IEA) for a renewed focus on the deployment of CCS as part of international... 

Eskom mulls big biomass co-firing plan in bid to lower coal emissions

By: Terence Creamer     14th December 2012 South Africa’s State-owned electricity utility Eskom is considering an ambitious plan to begin burning biomass alongside coal at some of its power stations, as part of a strategy aimed at lowering the group’s sizeable carbon footprint.  

Most funds have ‘head in the sand’ approach to climate risk – survey  

By: Natasha Odendaal     11th December 2012 A new survey by the Asset Owners Disclosure Project (AODP) has found that most of the world’s largest investment and pension funds are unprepared for climate change and lack climate risk strategies, but identified South Africa’s Government Employees Pension Fund (GEPF) as a “noteworthy... 

Exxaro tops carbon-disclosure log, while SA shows Brics leadership 

By: Terence Creamer     22nd November 2012 Black-empowered resources group Exxaro climbed to the top of the JSE Top 100 Carbon Disclosure Leadership Index (CDLI) in 2012, closely followed by fellow miners Gold Fields and Harmony – in 2011, Gold Fields topped the CDLI. A total of 78 leading public companies (measured by market... 

SA’s Green Fund attracts 590 applications

By: Terence Creamer     22nd November 2012 A total of 590 funding applications for potential sustainable-development projects worth R10.9-billion have been received following the issuance of request for proposals (RFP) under the South African government’s newly established Green Fund. The RFP closed on October 24, with funding... 

Investors exposed to climate and water risks, says WWF report 

By: Idéle Esterhuizen     20th November 2012 Investors have limited choices when it comes to tackling investment constraints like carbon and water risks, highlighting the need for government and regulators to urgently take action, a new report by WWF South Africa (WWF-SA) and WWF-UK has shown. The report, ‘Navigating Muddy Waters: Securing... 

Proposed Zambezi hydropower dams pose some risks, expert warns 

12th October 2012 Existing and proposed hydropower dams are not properly evaluated for the risks of natural hydrological variability, which is extremely high in the Zambezi river, not to mention the risks posed by climate change, says US State of Wisconsin Department of Safety and Professional Services hydrologist... 

Mining industry increasingly seeking water solutions

By: Natasha Odendaal     27th September 2012 The global mining water and wastewater sector was expected to grow as the focus on sustainable water solutions within the mining industry increased, a recent report by Frost & Sullivan found. In its ‘CEO 360 Degree Perspective of the Global Mining Water and Wastewater Treatment Market’ report,... 

SA teams gaining in solar-race confidence

By: Natasha Odendaal     21st September 2012 As the teams entered the third leg of the 11-day 5 400 km Sasol Solar Challenge, it emerged that the South African teams had started gaining momentum as more cars reached the finishing point on their own steam. The two Japanese teams, Tokai University and team Kenjiro Shinozuka, held on to the... 

Solar car challenge gets under way on Tuesday 

By: Natasha Odendaal     17th September 2012 Sasol’s Solar Challenge South Africa was set to kick off on Tuesday after 12, mostly academic, teams completed multiple final vehicle testing processes at Zwartkop Raceway, in Pretoria, on Monday. The competition, which was held by the Federation Internationale de l’Automobile every two years,... 

Two SA mining firms among top carbon disclosure leaders  

By: Megan van Wyngaardt     13th September 2012 South African mining firms Anglo American and its 80%-owned subisdiary South African mining firms Anglo American and its 80%-owned subisdiary Anglo American Platinum (Amplats) are included in the Carbon Disclosure Leadership Index (CDLI) which forms part of the UK-based Carbon Disclosure... 

SA smart-grid deployment should draw on global experiences

31st August 2012 A domestic smart grid must be mapped out correctly to avoid any unnecessary and awkward setbacks, as have been experienced by some projects internationally, and requires government to partially fund the projects, says Frost & Sullivan energy and power Africa business unit leader Cornelis van der... 

Firm identifies sustainability megaforces that will affect business

By: Zandile Mavuso     17th August 2012 Business has, over the past 20 years, recognised how it impacts on the world, but only recently has it become evident how the world affects the way in which companies do business, reports professional services firm KPMG. 

Organisation says efficiency initiatives a success

By: Zandile Mavuso     17th August 2012 The National Cleaner Production Centre of South Africa (NCPC-SA) reports that its Resource Efficiency and Cleaner Production (RECP) programme and the Industrial Energy Efficiency Improvement (IEE) project have achieved some successes since their inception. 

Global warming could benefit potato industry 

By: Yolandi Booyens     10th August 2012 Climate change could result in a positive outcome for the potato industry and possibly lead to potatoes becoming one of the top staple crops in the world, says University of Pretoria (UP) Potato Pathology Programme manager Dr Jacquie van der Waals. She says the potato appears to be the only crop,... 

Technique developed to see pollutants through cloud formations

27th July 2012 A satellite technique to better estimate concentrations of pollutants, such as soot, through cloud cover has been developed by University of Iowa (UI) scientists, the university said in a statement. 

Geo-engineering concept punted as possible climate change mitigator

20th July 2012 Dispersing fine light-scattering particles into the upper atmosphere could help combat climate change, suggests a member of the Institution of Chemical Engineers (IChemE) and Royal Academy of Engineering chartered chemical engineer Peter Davidson. 

DEA breaks ground on R8bn ‘green’ head office 

By: Natasha Odendaal     19th July 2012 The Department of Environmental Affairs (DEA) on Thursday broke ground on its new R8-billion head office in Pretoria, which will be South Africa’s first government-owned green building. The building, which was designed to meet the green output specifications outlined in the Climate Change... 

Carbon emission targets lack ambition – Basic Ministers 

By: Idéle Esterhuizen     13th July 2012 Ministers from the Brazil, South Africa, India and China (Basic) grouping raised concerns on Friday over the lack of ambition shown by industrialised countries party to the Kyoto Protocol through the quantified emission limitation or reduction objectives (QELROs). Brazil External Relations Vice... 

Solar roof construction at Vodacom building progressing 

By: Natasha Odendaal     9th July 2012 The construction of a 500 kWp single-roof photovoltaic solar array on telecommunications group Vodacom’s Century City, Cape Town, building, was well under way, engineering and management consultancy WSP Group reported. The project, which was expected to be complete in August, comprised the... 

Gigaba unveils climate change policy framework for State firms 

By: Idéle Esterhuizen     5th July 2012 The Department of Public Enterprises (DPE) on Thursday launched the Climate Change Policy Framework for State-owned companies (SOCs), a move which Water and Environmental Affairs Minister Edna Molewa hailed as an “important step” in transitioning to a greener economy. Public Enterprises Minister... 

Assess sustainable development progress, says Zuma

By: Sapa     22nd June 2012 The world must assess what progress has been made in creating a sustainable future, President Jacob Zuma said in Brazil on Thursday. "Have the financial, technical and capacity constraints of developing countries been enhanced to such an extent that they can achieve poverty eradication and... 

Eskom, TIA call for ocean-energy innovation bids

By: Terence Creamer     1st June 2012 The Technology Innovation Agency (TIA) and State-owned power utility Eskom launched an ‘open innovation challenge’ on Friday, through which they hope to stimulate the development of commercially viable ocean-current-energy technologies. Submissions are being sought from inventors, small and... 

WWF warns of over-consumption, calls for sustainable policies 

By: Idéle Esterhuizen     15th May 2012 The ever-growing demand for resources, driven by a growing global population, which could hit 10.9-billion by 2050, is putting “tremendous” pressure on the planet’s biodiversity and is threatening South Africa’s future security, health and well-being, the World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF) said in... 

Corobrik could double earnings from Lawley CDM project

By: Idéle Esterhuizen     10th April 2012 The United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) has agreed to change the registered carbon credit project for South African brick manufacturer Corobrik to double the carbon credits earned from the Fuel Switch project at its Lawley factory, in Johannesburg. The project was... 

Three major airliner manufacturers cooperate on aviation biofuels

By: Keith Campbell     6th April 2012 Three of the world’s biggest commercial aircraft manufacturers recently announced that they had signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to jointly develop easily applicable and affordable aviation biofuels. The companies are Airbus of Europe, Boeing of the US and Embraer of Brazil. The three... 

Omnia CDM project to receive over a million emission credits

By: Natasha Odendaal     26th March 2012 Chemicals producer Omnia has been issued more than a million emission credits for the clean development mechanism (CDM) project at its nitric acid production facility, in Sasolburg. The JSE-listed company reduced its greenhouse-gas emissions from the plant by 98%, after the incorporation of the... 

Three major airliner companies to cooperate on aviation biofuels

By: Keith Campbell     23rd March 2012 On Thursday, three of the world’s biggest commercial aircraft manufacturers announced that they had signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) to jointly develop easily applicable and affordable aviation biofuels. The companies are Airbus of Europe, Boeing of the US and Embraer of Brazil. The... 

European aerospace, airline CEOs in emissions appeal to four PMs

By: Keith Campbell     23rd March 2012 Three leading European aerospace manufacturers and six of the continent’s airlines have jointly appealed to the Prime Ministers of France, Germany, Spain and the UK to ensure that the European Union’s (EU’s) recently and unilaterally introduced emissions trading scheme (ETS) will be discussed in... 

Anglo Zimele reports substantial interest in Green Fund

By: Natasha Odendaal     20th March 2012 Anglo American enterprise development arm Zimele reported on Tuesday an “overwhelmingly” positive response from small enterprises in its Green Fund, with over 100 responses since its launch in November last year. Zimele committed R100-million over seven years to its Zimele Green Fund – an amount... 

South African businesses urged to assess water supply risk  

By: Henry Lazenby     12th March 2012 About 85% of water-intensive users among the JSE’s Top 100 companies are exposed to water-related risk, with 70% believing that their operations could be directly affected in the near term, a report revealed on Monday. However, most companies still needed to identify water risk in their supply... 

European aviation CEOs appeal to EU Prime Ministers over emissions scheme

By: Keith Campbell     12th March 2012 Three leading European aerospace manufacturers and six of the continent’s airlines have jointly appealed to the Prime Ministers of France, Germany, Spain and the UK to ensure that the European Union’s (EU’s) recently and unilaterally introduced emissions trading scheme (ETS) will be discussed in... 

Philips launches energy efficient lighting company 

By: Natasha Odendaal     9th March 2012 Philips on Thursday launched a new company offering total project solutions in switching to energy efficient lighting solutions for public- and private-sector buildings and businesses. Philips Lighting Solutions, which initially aimed to target commercial and industrial industries, offered... 

Industry body highlights environment, pricing as priorities

2nd March 2012 Among its priorities for this year and beyond, there are none more crucial to the Southern African Institute of Steel Construction (Saisc) than the promotion of steel as a green product, the protection of the local consumer – especially from the importation of substandard and dangerous products,... 

Determining carbon tax rate a fine balancing act – Treasury  

By: Henry Lazenby     29th February 2012 Determining the correct rate for a carbon tax in South Africa is a fine balancing act, National Treasury deputy director-general Ismail Momoniat said on Wednesday. Speaking at the launch of conservation organisation Worldwide Fund for Nature (WWF) South Africa’s discussion paper on carbon tax... 

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