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Environmental Studies News

Company launches first plastics research centre

By: Halima Frost     29th November 2019 Specialist chemicals company Clariant last month announced the inception of its EcoCircle centre of excellence, based on its plan to offer significant support to reduce, reuse and recycle. The first such centre will be based at Clariant’s Masterbatches Business Unit in Pogliano, Italy, and aims... 

Innovation key in reducing sector impact on environment

29th November 2019 The energy and electrical sectors should be at the forefront of innovation to reduce its impact on the environment, says diversified power management company Eaton South Africa’s Energy Saver System business development manager Marcel Buckner. “This at a time when the world’s focus is... 

Innovation key in reducing sector impact on environment
GOOD GAS The Xiria switchgear system does not use harmful sulphur hexafluoride gases

Research grant awarded at environment conference 

By: Halima Frost     29th November 2019 Stellenbosch University research fellow Dr Hayley Clements was announced as the recipient of the inaugural Jennifer Ward Oppenheimer Research Grant last month at the tenth Oppenheimer Research Conference held in Midrand, Gauteng. The research grant was set up to honour the late Jennifer Ward... 

Research grant awarded at environment conference
Oppenheimer Generations research head Dr Duncan MacFadyen discusses the Oppenheimer Research Conference and the recipient of the Jennifer Ward Oppenheimer Research Grant

Water-treatment technology launched in Amsterdam

By: Halima Frost     29th November 2019 Earlier this month, flow control, filtration and environmental technology supplier Flowrox launched its Flowrox Corona non-thermal plasma water-treatment technology at the Aquatech expo, in the Netherlands. The Flowrox Corona was selected as one of the finalists for the Aquatech Innovation Award... 

Water-treatment technology launched  in Amsterdam
PURI-FECT The Flowrox Corona uses cold plasma technology to purify wastewater before being reintroduced into the environment

Solaris-based biodiesel introduced to operations at OR Tambo

By: Simone Liedtke     28th November 2019 Various entities on Thursday signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) for Project Reya Foya, the follow up to Project Solaris, which will introduce Solaris-based biodiesel into the ground-handling operations at OR Tambo International Airport. Solaris is a nicotine-free tobacco plant used by... 

Solaris-based biodiesel introduced to operations at OR Tambo
A Solaris seed pod

Thirty JSE-listed companies embark on biodiversity valuation assessments

By: Simone Liedtke     25th November 2019 Thirty JSE-listed companies, across various sectors, are being supported by a World Wide Fund for Nature-South Africa (WWF-SA) Nedbank Green Trust project team to assess their current levels of biodiversity mainstreaming into their strategies and activities. The assessments are supported by the... 

Fuel for rockets, Zeppelins points toward green heat solution 

By: , Bloomberg     18th November 2019 It’s the most nettlesome problem in the quest to ditch fossil fuels: how can you get thousand-degree heat used in factory furnaces without pumping billions of tons of greenhouse gases into the atmosphere? Heat-intensive processes like steelmaking and oil refineries are the starting point for... 

Fuel for rockets, Zeppelins points toward green heat solution
The Enel Fusina hydrogen plant near Venice, Italy.

Global pollution is rising again and won’t peak before 2040

By: , Bloomberg     13th November 2019 Global greenhouse-gas pollution rose for a second year, ending a lull in emissions and putting the world on track for further increases through 2040 unless governments take radical action. The findings in the International Energy Agency’s annual report on energy paint a grim outlook for efforts... 

Greenpeace finds rare underwater biodiversity haven offshore Cape Town

By: Marleny Arnoldi     13th November 2019 A team of Greenpeace activists, divers and scientists has discovered a “biodiversity haven” on the Vema Seamount, which is 1 000 km off the coast of Cape Town in the southeast Atlantic ocean. The discovery was made onboard the environmental organisation’s research expedition called Arctic... 

Focus on implementing energy efficiency project by 2021

By: Cameron Mackay     8th November 2019 The National Cleaner Production Centre (NCPC-SA) is looking to escalate the implementation of energy management in South African industry to allow companies to benefit from the support of the Industrial Energy Efficiency (IEE) Project before the project ends in 2020/21. The IEE Project is... 

Focus on implementing energy efficiency project by 2021
ENSURING ENERGY EFFICIENCY Companies participating in the IEE Project have achieved energy savings of 4 286 GWh since 2010, and GHG mitigation of 3.9-million tonnes of CO2 equivalent

French cement company sells promise of greener future in IPO

By: , Bloomberg     21st October 2019 A tiny French cement company sold shares on the Paris exchange with a big promise: to shake up global production and reduce carbon emissions. Hoffmann Green Cement Technologies pitched to investors a “disruptive” manufacturing process based on changing the composition of cement so that it no... 

Plastic bottles vs aluminium cans: who'll win the global water fight? 

By: Reuters     17th October 2019 Global bottled water giants are ramping up trials of easily recyclable aluminium cans to replace plastic that pollutes the world's seas. Sound like a slam-dunk for the environment? Not entirely. Aluminium cans might indeed mean less ocean waste, but they come with their own eco-price: the... 

New water-level station introduced

By: Tracy Hancock     11th October 2019 The HOBO MicroRX water-level station, which can monitor water levels in the harshest conditions, is the “perfect solution” to South Africa’s current economic and environmental challenges, says local technology integrator Euca Technologies. South Africa has fast become a water-conscious country,... 

New water-level  station introduced
INFORMED DECISION-MAKING The MicroRX water-level station can provide data to help businesses make more informed decisions on how best to action strategies that allow for better management

Minerals Council calls for rational debates on a just transition 

By: Kim Cloete     9th October 2019 The Minerals Council South Africa has called for "rational and sombre" debates about a just transition from coal-fired power to more wind and solar energy and has outlined the difficult situation mining companies are facing, amid higher electricity prices and other input costs. The council's... 

Minerals Council calls for rational debates on a just transition
Photo by Creamer Media
Minerals Council chief economist Henk Langenhoven

Drought conditions persist in some parts of the country – Agriculture dept

By: African News Agency      9th October 2019 Below normal rainfall is anticipated over the central and south-eastern parts of South Africa during late spring, while above normal rainfall is expected during early summer to mid-summer in the central and eastern regions, the department of agriculture, forestry and fisheries said on Wednesday,... 

Drought conditions persist in some parts of the country – Agriculture dept

As great white sharks disappear, Cape Town searches for reasons

By: , Bloomberg     30th September 2019 Capetonians don’t know who to blame for the disappearance of their great white sharks: The orcas that eat them, the fishermen who sell their prey to Australia for use in fish-and-chips shops or gradual ecological change. The world’s biggest predatory fish haven’t been seen this year in False Bay,... 

Shipping sector sets course for zero carbon vessels, fuel by 2030

By: Reuters     23rd September 2019 Leading ports, banks, oil and shipping companies on Monday launched an initiative which aims to have ships and marine fuels with zero carbon emissions on the high seas by 2030, in another step by the maritime sector to reduce carbon dioxide (CO2). International shipping accounts for 2.2% of... 

HVAC-R system to be introduced to S Africa in Q1 2020

By: Cameron Mackay     20th September 2019 Diversified technology company Johnson Controls will introduce Verasys – the first plug-and-play control system that integrates heating, ventilation, air-conditioning and refrigeration (HVAC-R) equipment and controls – to the South African market in the first quarter of next year. Johnson... 

Institute establishes drive for CO2 as natural refrigerant

By: Cameron Mackay     20th September 2019 Local heating, refrigeration and air conditioning (HVAC) industry body the South African Institute of Refrigeration and Air Conditioning (SAIRAC) has established a drive to introduce the option of using carbon dioxide (CO2) as a natural refrigerant, referred to as R744, through technical talks... 

National action ‘critical’ in combatting climate change, says Momoniat 

By: Simone Liedtke     19th September 2019 Appropriate action to help transition the South African economy onto a low-carbon growth path, as articulated in the National Development Plan, is needed, says National Treasury deputy-director general Dr Ismail Momoniat. Speaking at a Carbon Tax Colloquium hosted by the South African National... 

National action ‘critical’ in combatting climate change, says Momoniat
Photo by Creamer Media's Simone Liedtke
National Treasury deputy-director general Dr Ismail Momoniat

Foundation celebrates 25 years of success in used oil recycling

6th September 2019 More than 1.5-billion litres of hazardous used motor oil has been kept out of the environment. 

Foundation celebrates  25 years of success in  used oil recycling
COLLABORATION It is imperative that ROSE works alongside government to ensure we help shape legislation which will benefit all stakeholders in the oil industry

South African ecologist wins prestigious Stockholm Water Prize

By: Simone Liedtke     27th August 2019 Aquatic ecologist Dr Jackie King has been named the 2019 Stockholm Water Prize Laureate, by the Stockholm International Water Institute, for her contributions to global river management. Together with colleagues, King created methods to demonstrate ecological and social implications of damming... 

Eggs from last northern white rhinos fertilised, scientists say

By: Reuters     26th August 2019 Seven eggs from the world's last two remaining northern white rhinos have been successfully fertilised artificially, reviving hopes of saving the endangered animals, scientists said on Monday. The world’s last male northern white rhinoceros, a 45-year-old named Sudan, died last year in Kenya,... 

Shocking rate of plant extinctions in South Africa

By: African News Agency      23rd August 2019 South Africa is experiencing a shocking rate of plant extinction with as many as 79 plants disappearing owing largely to expanding agriculture and urbanisation, the Stellenbosch University (SU)  has revealed. An international team of researchers, led by Professor Jaco Le Roux and Dr Heidi Hirsch,... 

Greenpeace says Mpumalanga a sulphur dioxide emissions hotpot 

By: Marleny Arnoldi     19th August 2019 Environmental organisation Greenpeace’s India branch says Kriel, in Mpumalanga province, in South Africa, is the second-largest global hotspot for sulphur dioxide (SO2) emissions, mostly owing to the 12 coal-fired power stations in the province. The branch commissioned a study using the US’s... 

Greenpeace says Mpumalanga a sulphur dioxide emissions hotpot

Wakkerstroom residents seek interdict against municipality's R98m pipeline project

By: News24Wire      16th August 2019 The Wakkerstroom Natural Heritage Association has approached the Mpumalanga High Court in Middelburg to seek an interdict that will prevent the Dr Pixley Ka Isaka Seme Local Municipality from implementing a R98-million pipeline project. News24 earlier reported residents feared the project - from... 

Researchers highlight climate change risks for South Africa

By: Schalk Burger     16th August 2019 Scientists from the South African Weather Service (SAWS), the National Research Foundation (NRF), policy makers and government officials discussed South Africa's research on, and responses to, climate change and its complex regional and global impacts on society, economy, politics, animals and... 

Food processing industry ideal for biogas production

By: Cameron Mackay     16th August 2019 Industries that produce large quantities of organic waste, such as the food processing industry, are ideal for biogas production, says local waste disposal solutions provider Global Energy director Henry Thomson. The Cape Town-based engineering consulting and turnkey project company provides... 

Food processing industry ideal for biogas production
CONFIDENCE IN BIOGAS Establishing credibility in biogas technology is crucial in implementing more projects

Billionaire-backed Kropz faces crucial water license hearing

By: , Bloomberg     15th August 2019 Kropz, which is almost half owned by South African billionaire Patrice Motsepe’s African Rainbow Capital Investments, is set to face a crucial test next month that will determine the future of its flagship project. Representatives of the Elandsfontein phosphate mine, which Kropz has spent at... 

CSIR, Japan and UN agency to jointly research plastic waste in SA

By: Rebecca Campbell     9th August 2019 Japan and the United Nations Industrial Development Organisation (UNIDO) recently signed an agreement at the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) in Pretoria, to cooperate to counter plastic pollution in South Africa. The CSIR will work jointly with UNIDO to implement the... 

EIA public process for proposed Richards Bay power plant open for comment

By: Simone Liedtke     23rd July 2019 A revised environmental-impact assessment (EIA) report for the proposed development of State-owned Eskom’s Richards Bay combined cycle power plant (CCPP), and its associated infrastructure, is available for review and comment from July 24 to August 26. Subsequent to the report’s initial release... 

Rhinos come to the bond market, and other species may follow

By: , Bloomberg     18th July 2019 The planned sale of a rhino impact bond, aimed at growing the population of the endangered black rhino, is seen by its backers as a test for the creation of a conservation debt market that could be used for everything from protecting species facing extinction to preserving wildlife areas. The... 

New combustion emission monitoring equipment offered to Africa

By: Cameron Mackay     12th July 2019 Mining, industrial and processing solutions provider RTS Africa Technologies is the exclusive supplier of laser-based online gas analysers and monitoring recording equipment, from Norwegian company NEO Monitors; as well as, more recently, a range of both multiple channel and portable instruments,... 

New combustion emission monitoring equipment offered to Africa
IAN FRASER South Africa needs to grasp the new wave of global automation more firmly

CSIR doubles down on solar PV amid energy-autonomous campus success

By: Donna Slater     12th July 2019 The Pretoria-based headquarters of research organisation the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) has almost doubled its commissioning of solar photovoltaic (PV) installed capacity because of its rooftop-mounted fixed-axis solar PV plant exceeding initial performance expectations.  

CSIR doubles down on solar PV amid energy-autonomous campus success

IEA energy efficiency commission gathers expertise from all walks of life

By: Marleny Arnoldi     9th July 2019 Ireland's Prime Minister Leo Baradkar has been elected the honorary chairperson of the International Energy Agency’s (IEA’s) newly established Commission for Urgent Action on Energy Efficiency. The independent high-level global commission is set to examine how progress on energy efficiency can be... 

Company to continue distribution of smart air quality monitoring system

By: Mamaili Mamaila     5th July 2019 Environmental monitoring company SI Analytics continues being the regional distributor of the AQMesh pod system – a small sensor-based unit for air quality monitoring. 

Mpumalanga coal mines noncompliant with water use licence conditions – CER 

By: Marleny Arnoldi     3rd July 2019 Nonprofit organisation (NPO), the Centre for Environmental Rights (CER) says coal mines in Mpumalanga are “significantly” noncompliant with their water use licence conditions. In a report – the fourth instalment in the CER’s Full Disclosure series – released on Wednesday, the NPO details gross... 

Mpumalanga coal mines noncompliant with water use licence conditions – CER
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