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Environmental News

Chubb ceases new coal-plant business to fight climate change

By: Bloomberg     1st July 2019 Chubb said it will stop underwriting the construction or operation of new coal-fired plants to fight climate change. The insurer will also stop underwriting or making new debt or equity investments in companies that derive more than 30% of their revenue from coal-mining or energy production from... 

Aerospace technology leaders reaffirm emission-cutting ambitions

By: Rebecca Campbell     28th June 2019 At the recent 2019 Paris Air Show, the Chief Technology Officers (CTOs) of seven of the world’s major aerospace companies issued a joint statement on their joint and cooperative commitment to reduce carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions by the aviation industry. The companies were, in alphabetical... 

Company to launch Kaiser units at IFAT Africa

By: Khutso Maphatsoe     28th June 2019 Distributor, repair facility and rental agent Octopus Electronics will launch industrial vehicle manufacturer Kaiser MORO’s Elegance truck at the IFAT Africa 2019 conference, which will be held at the Gallagher Convention Centre in Midrand, Gauteng, from July 9 to 11. Octopus Electronics sales... 

Company will host a masterclass at IFAT Africa 2019

By: Khutso Maphatsoe     28th June 2019 The IFAT Africa 2019 conference is scheduled to be held at the Gallagher convention centre, in Gauteng, from July 9 to 11.   QFS will share an overview of its involvement in various projects in the industrial and municipal sectors. It will also showcase water treatment and odour control... 

Company will host a masterclass at IFAT Africa 2019
STOPPING THE STENCH Odour control is a process that involves the treatment of odorous gas in heavily built-up areas that have become a nuisance to local residents, who live in the surrounding areas near wastewater treatment plants.

AfriSam exploring ways to further reduce its carbon emissions

By: Schalk Burger     28th June 2019 Diversified materials company AfriSam is working to further reduce its carbon emissions, after achieving a sustained reduction of 35% as a result of on various initiatives over nearly two decades, says AfriSam Cementitious executive Hannes Meyer. During a media tour of the clinker production... 

AfriSam exploring ways to further reduce its carbon emissions
Photo by Dylan Slater
LIMESTONE KILN Producing clinker is energy intensive and releases CO2 over and above the fuel used to burn the limestone

Scientists want to dump hundreds of plastic blocks into the sea to solve litter mystery

By: News24Wire      27th June 2019 We know a staggering volume of plastic waste is ending up in our oceans, but where it all goes is still a bit of a mystery. A ground-breaking new study aims to shed light on the subject, but scientists have hit a stumbling block after concerned citizens launched efforts to stop it from going ahead. 

People are dying from pollution in South Africa 

By: Bloomberg     27th June 2019 In Pullens Hope, your eyes itch and your nose clogs. It’s easy to figure out why. On the right side of the main street of the dilapidated village east of Johannesburg is a fenced-off electricity substation with a red sign warning of pollutants. On the left, a power plant belches emissions from... 

Pollution on our plate: How waste is ending up in fish caught off the Cape coast

By: News24Wire      26th June 2019 The ocean around Cape Town is so polluted that pharmaceutical and industrial chemical compounds are accumulating in the flesh of fish caught off the coast, reports GroundUp . Meanwhile, the City of Cape Town's water quality reports remain hidden from the public. Scientists from the University of... 

Campaign groups accuse Total of breaching French corporate duty law in Uganda

By: Reuters     25th June 2019 French and Ugandan campaign groups including Friends of the Earth have filed a legal notification with Total, claiming it has failed to address the human and environmental impact of its Ugandan operations as required by French law. Under France's Corporate Duty of Vigilance regulation, large... 

Nelson Mandela Bay municipality vows to clean up filthy city

By: African News Agency      25th June 2019 Nelson Mandela Bay Municipality has embarked on a  campaign to clean up the city by budgeting R40-million for the 2019/20 financial year.  Forty three co-operatives will be paid as part of its “Clean and Green Programme”. 

Water department going to court to stop EC municipality 'polluting' Great Fish River

By: African News Agency      25th June 2019 The Department of Water and Sanitation (DWS) is taking legal action to force an Eastern Cape municipality to stop polluting the Great Fish River, it said on Monday.  DWS’ Andrew Lucas, responsible for water regulation in the Eastern Cape, said in a statement that legal action was being taken... 

Wild weather is endangering world's oldest form of clean power

By: Bloomberg     24th June 2019 The Kariba Dam has towered over one of Africa’s mightiest rivers for 60 years, forming the world’s largest reservoir and providing reliable electricity to Zambia and Zimbabwe. But as drought grips the region, flow on the Zambezi river has dwindled to a third of what it was a year ago. Last month,... 

PnP joins metal packaging recycling organisation

By: Marleny Arnoldi     21st June 2019 Supermarket group Pick n Pay (PnP) has signed up as a member of MetPac-SA, a producer responsibility organisation representing the metal packaging recycling industry in South Africa. MetPac-SA CEO Kishan Singh this week applauded PnP’s decision to support the local metal packaging industry’s... 

Saice embarks on long-term expansion strategy

By: Cameron Mackay     21st June 2019 Civil engineering voluntary association and learning institution, the South African Institution of Civil Engineering (Saice) has initiated a long-term expansion strategy to cater to the needs of its members according to their specific member segment, such as segments for students, graduates or... 

Saice embarks on long-term expansion strategy
GROWING FORWARD The diversity panel and ‘Growing Forward’ strategy will allow the institution to develop policies that address gender diversity and inclusivity in the built environment industry

Regulations enable organisations to develop graduates

By: Cameron Mackay     21st June 2019 Organisations need to play a more active role in developing engineering capacity in South Africa, as new regulations are in place to provide available funding for graduate training, says South African Institution of Civil Engineering (Saice) capacity building arm Civils Masakheni MD Allyson... 

Regulations enable organisations to develop graduates
ALLYSON LAWLESS Employers are mistaken in unrealistically expecting graduates to design and manage processes, projects and systems from their first day at work

Cape's plants are dying out – and local authorities need citizens' help

By: News24Wire      20th June 2019 Almost 40 plant species have gone extinct in the Western Cape since 1900, making it one of the hot spots for plant extinction on the planet. A new study, published in the journal Nature Ecology and Evolution, found that across the world about 600 trees, flowers, and fruit-bearing plants have died... 

Science academies call for increased air pollution mitigation

By: Marleny Arnoldi     19th June 2019 The National Academies of Sciences and Medicine from South Africa, Brazil, Germany and the US had joined forces in calling to action on harmful air pollution. The academies were calling for a new global compact to improve collaboration on the growing problem, and for governments, businesses and... 

Balwin registers over 16 000 EDGE certified units

By: Simone Liedtke     18th June 2019 JSE-listed Balwin Properties has registered more than 16 000 units across seven of its built-to-sell and three of its rental developments as excellence in design for greater efficiency certified with the Green Building Council South Africa. The registration will be completed over the next six... 

Balwin registers over 16 000 EDGE certified units
Balwin Properties Kikuyu development

Aviation technology leaders reaffirm their determination to cut industry’s CO2 emissions

By: Rebecca Campbell     18th June 2019 At the 2019 Paris Air Show on Tuesday, the Chief Technology Officers (CTOs) of seven of the world’s major aerospace companies issued a joint statement on their joint and cooperative commitment to reduce carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions by the aviation industry. The companies were, in alphabetical... 

Aviation technology leaders reaffirm their determination to cut industry’s CO2 emissions

Swiss refiner Metalor to stop processing artisanal gold

By: Reuters     18th June 2019 Switzerland's Metalor, one of the world's biggest gold refineries, said on Monday it would work only with gold from large industrial mines in order to reduce the risk of illegality in its supply chain. Informal methods of gold production, known as "artisanal" or small-scale mining, have grown... 

Construction sector biggest greenhouse gas contributor

14th June 2019 Building construction and operations account for 36% of final energy use and nearly 40% of energy-related carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions globally, making the sector the largest energy user and producer of greenhouse gasses, says Green Building Council of South Africa (GBCSA) CEO Dorah Modise. 

Construction sector biggest greenhouse  gas contributor
DORAH MODISE The GBCSA welcomes the introduction of these instruments in an effort to promote energy efficiency

New green building certification introduced in South Africa

By: Mc'Kyla Nortje     14th June 2019 Green building consulting company Solid Green Consulting is the first company to be working on an actual Living Building Challenge project in South Africa. The programme was developed by nongovernmental organisation International Living Future Institute (ILFI), to lead transformation towards a... 

New green building  certification introduced  in South Africa
MARLOES REININK The Living Building Challenge is possibly the most rigorous green building certification programme and sustainable design framework globally

Health club receives net zero waste rating

By: Mc'Kyla Nortje     14th June 2019 Through rigorous waste reduction, separation and recycling on site, and the assistance of net zero-accredited professionals Ecolution Consulting, Health Club Virgin Active Constantia, in Cape Town, achieved a Net Zero Waste certification from the Green Building Council of South Africa.... 

Health club receives net  zero waste rating
Photo by Julian Goldswain
NOTHING GOES TO WASTE Currently 93% of the gym’s waste is being diverted – an amount that was possible through an initial waste audit calculation

Green light for ‘net zero’

By: Mc'Kyla Nortje     14th June 2019 Following then Energy Minister Jeff Radebe’s announcement paving the way for small projects generating between 1 MW and 10 MW of their own renewable electricity to feed it back into the grid, green building consultants ecocentric see this as a crucial opportunity for companies to accelerate... 

Green light for ‘net zero’
RATINGS The GBCSA Rosebank office received a 4-Star Interiors Rating based on the assessment of the environmental attributes of the building’s interior fit-outs

NCPC-SA to drive resource efficiency in manufacturing

By: Mamaili Mamaila     14th June 2019 If the South African manufacturing sector wishes to mitigate the effects of rising tariffs and the new Carbon Tax, then it needs to become more resource efficient, according to the National Cleaner Production Centre South Africa (NCPC-SA) 

NCPC-SA to drive resource efficiency  in manufacturing
GREEN ECONOMY The manufacturing sector has not been growing because of its mounting challenges

Building and construction applications get a coatings sustainability boost

14th June 2019 Multinational speciality chemicals producer Clariant aims to contribute more sustainability and safety solutions to meet the building and construction industry’s challenges, says Clariant flame retardants segment coating manager Achim Hennemann. Clariant offers pigment paste producers and... 

Building and construction applications get a coatings sustainability boost
AFTER FIRE TEST Strong intumescent formation with clear coat based on Exolit 855 after fire test

Sustainable cities integral to combating climate change

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     12th June 2019 Combating the effects of climate change will require a collective response from developed and developing cities, which need to pursue the development of sustainable cities, regardless of the disparity between the biggest contributors to and those most affected by climate change. This was a key... 

Saving Earth with electric cars means wrecking a fragile desert

By: Bloomberg     11th June 2019 The oases that once interrupted the dusty slopes of the Atacama desert in northern Chile allowed humans and animals to survive for thousands of years in the world’s driest climate. That was before the mining started. Sara Plaza, 67 years old, can still remember guiding her family’s sheep along... 

Erratic weather boosts energy demand, denting climate goals – BP 

By: Reuters     11th June 2019 Extreme temperatures around the globe drove a sharp acceleration in energy demand and carbon emissions last year, oil giant BP said on Tuesday, issuing a stark warning that the world risks losing the battle against climate change. And while 2018 saw another sharp pick up in renewable power such... 

Ugandan critics oppose Nile river power plant plan

By: Reuters     11th June 2019 A plan by South Africa's Bonang Power and Energy to develop a 360 MW power plant on Uganda's River Nile has met resistance from critics who say the project will destroy the popular tourist attraction of Murchison Falls. Located on the Nile between the Ugandan lakes Kyoga and Albert, the Murchison... 

Greenpeace study recommends Eskom sell its coal-fired power stations

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     11th June 2019 A study commissioned by Greenpeace Africa recommends that State-owned Eskom, as part of its reform, gradually spin out its coal-fired power generation activities to new generation companies that will operate the power plants for the remainder of their operating lives. Greenpeace had commissioned... 

Greenpeace study recommends Eskom sell its coal-fired power stations
Photo by Creamer Media's Terence Creamer
The Lethabo power station

Environmental organisations take Highveld pollution matter to court 

By: Marleny Arnoldi     10th June 2019 Environmental justice group groundWork and community organisation Vukani Environment Justice Movement in Action have launched “landmark litigation”, demanding that government clean up the air in the Mpumalanga Highveld. GroundWork and Vukani on June 7 served papers to the High Court, asking that... 

Environmental organisations take Highveld pollution matter to court

City of Johannesburg unveils revamped air quality monitoring station

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     10th June 2019 The MMC for Environment and Infrastructure Services in the City of Johannesburg (CoJ), Councillor Nico de Jager, last week officially relaunched the newly revamped Air Quality Monitoring station, in Orange Farm, south of Johannesburg. This event formed part of the World Environment Week. It was... 

The Concrete Institute highlights composite road benefits

By: Cameron Mackay     7th June 2019 The benefits of concrete for roads can be exploited by the South African roads industry, says South African concrete education and skills organisation The Concrete Institute MD Bryan Perrie. While concrete is generally more expensive in terms of initial costs, it does offer reduced life-cycle... 

The Concrete Institute highlights composite road benefits
BRYAN PERRIE South African roads are predominantly asphalt, and The Concrete Institute has been trying to make inroads for the use of concrete for roads

Producer achieves 35% emission reduction, supports carbon tax

By: Cameron Mackay     7th June 2019 Construction materials supplier AfriSam has reduced the company’s carbon emissions, per ton of cement produced, by 35% from 1990 to 2018 and is focusing on further carbon reductions, sustainability and the implementation of the carbon tax in South Africa. “The 35% is close to the targets being... 

Producer achieves 35% emission reduction, supports carbon tax
CARBON TAX COMPLICATIONS AfriSam has significantly reduced its carbon emissions

Oil giants' chemical lifeline threatened by plastic-trash crisis

By: Bloomberg     6th June 2019 As the world strives to wean itself off fossil fuels, oil companies have been turning to plastic as the key to their future. Now even that’s looking overly optimistic. The global crackdown on plastic trash threatens to take a big chunk out of demand growth just as oil companies like Saudi Aramco... 

Reclaimers progress towards formal inclusion in waste collection system

By: Marleny Arnoldi     5th June 2019 The African Reclaimers Organisation (Aro) has partnered with consumer goods manufacturer Unilever South Africa and the University of the Witwatersrand (Wits) in starting a pilot project to help reclaimers advance towards formal integration into the Johannesburg waste collection system. The... 

Reclaimers progress towards formal inclusion in waste collection system
ARO committee member Luyanda Hlatshwayo, Wits lecturer Dr Melanie Samson, Wiego organiser Eli Kodisang, Unilever homecare VP Lethepu Mashaba and Unilever South Africa VP Luc-Oliver Marquet

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