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Environmental News

Eskom needs R187bn to comply with new emissions laws

By: Reuters     20th November 2019 South Africa's power utility Eskom needs around R187-billion to comply fully with existing legislation curbing harmful emissions, a government presentation to parliament showed on Wednesday. Eskom, which uses mainly coal-fired power plants to generate electricity, was one of 37 top domestic... 

SA parliament committee concerned over lack of 'tangible' drought strategy

By: African News Agency      20th November 2019 Parliament's select committee on cooperative governance and traditional affairs, water and sanitation says it is concerned at the lack of a tangible drought strategy to deal effectively with the challenges South Africa is currently facing. Last week commercial farmers said a ravaging drought had... 

SA parliament committee concerned over lack of 'tangible' drought strategy

Homes, land destroyed as desperate Zimbabweans turn to illegal gold mining

By: Reuters     20th November 2019 Under the blazing sun, a group of men use picks and shovels to dig up a bushy patch of land outside Zimbabwe's second-largest city, stopping every few seconds to scan the soil for signs of gold. The 13 men, led by one carrying a metal detector, left open gullies all over the area in Filabusi,... 

Southern Africa drought to persist through March, FEWS NET says

By: , Bloomberg     19th November 2019 Southern Africa faces further drought through March as land preparation and planting of summer crops gets underway, even after most parts of the region received near-normal rainfall through early November, according to the Famine Early Warning Systems Network (FEWS NET). “Seasonal forecasts... 

Two rhino and a zebra electrocuted after Eskom pylon collapses in nature reserve

By: News24Wire      18th November 2019 Several animals at the Tshwane Rietvlei Nature Reserve were electrocuted after an Eskom electricity pylon collapsed, Tshwane's mayoral committee member for environment and agriculture, Dana Wannenburg said on Saturday. The animals are a female rhino, her calf and a zebra. 

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.

L2D commits to cutting its carbon emissions

By: Simone Liedtke     15th November 2019 With a vision to be the leading South African precinct focused retail-centred real estate investment trust, Liberty Two Degrees (L2D) has made commitments to changing some of its business operations that will support accelerated and positive changes by reducing carbon emissions, water use and... 

Bottling company helps brewery work towards a sustainable future

15th November 2019 Reliability, environment-friendliness and viability for the future are values held by filling and packaging systems supplier KHS that Portugal-based brewery Sociedade Central de Cervejas E Bebidas S.A. (SCC) greatly appreciates – and has done for decades. The commissioning of the new glass line... 

AfriSam prioritising quality amid tough times for construction sector

By: Schalk Burger     15th November 2019 Cement, ready-mix concrete and aggregates company AfriSam is focusing on producing high-quality cements, concretes and aggregates, as well as offering timely, reliable service to clients, amid difficult economic and construction sector times, says AfriSam construction materials North regional... 

AfriSam prioritising quality amid  tough times for construction sector
Photo by Dylan Slater
AFRISAM READY-MIX PLANT The ready-mix batch plant has significant process controls to ensure that the correct ingredients and additives are mixed and loaded for clients

Climate change might hit the economy harder, faster than thought

By: , Bloomberg     14th November 2019 The economic effects of global warming may arrive sooner and with a bigger impact than previously thought, according to Oxford Economics in a report that compares recent scientific research with the economic literature on the costs of climate change. In the absence of efforts to curb greenhouse... 

SA’s water shortages 

13th November 2019 Creamer Media’s Chanel de Bruyn speaks to Creamer Media Senior Deputy Editor Natasha Odendaal about the water supply challenges in South Africa, how government plans to address the situation and how the ongoing drought is affecting the agricultural sector.   

SA’s water shortages
SA’s water shortages

Global appetite for SUVs could offset benefits of switch to EVs, IEA warns 

By: Terence Creamer     13th November 2019 The growing global consumer appetite for bigger and heavier sports utility vehicles (SUVs) could offset the emission benefits set to arise from electric cars, the International Energy Agency (IEA) warns in its latest World Energy Outlook. The global fleet of SUVs increased from 35-million in 2010... 

Global appetite for SUVs could offset benefits of switch to EVs, IEA warns
IEA executive director Dr Fatih Birol

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... 

Prolonged drought hits South African farmers’ resilience 

By: Natasha Odendaal     12th November 2019 Federation of agricultural organisations AgriSA on Tuesday painted a dire picture of the impact the years-long drought has had on South Africa’s farming industry and its now-waning capacity to recover in the midst of a climatic shift. Over the past four years, the country has faced a drier... 

Prolonged drought hits South African farmers’ resilience

Johannesburg seeks to avert 'ecological disaster' from beetle-infested trees

By: Reuters     12th November 2019 Researchers and city officials are racing to understand the extent of a beetle infestation damaging trees across South Africa that, if left unaddressed, could have a ripple effect on the climate, air quality and ecosystems. The Polyphagous Shot Hole Borer (PSHB), indigenous to Southeast Asia, is... 

Demand increasing for compressed-air audits

By: Cameron Mackay     8th November 2019 Owing to the struggling South African economy, as well as the general need for companies to reduce energy costs in operational processes, the demand for compressed-air auditing has increased over the past two years, says compressed-air products suppliers Artic Driers CEO Allen Cockfield. A... 

Demand increasing for compressed-air audits
SAVINGS IN THE AIR Artic Driers can rebuild many old air dryers sold by certain manufacturers. This will make them more energy efficient and generally cost-effective

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

Manufacturer targets product releases, skills development

By: Cameron Mackay     8th November 2019 Solar energy equipment supplier Microcare plans to share its local story of innovation, job creation and skills development next year during its thirtieth year of manufacturing in South Africa and aims to celebrate with product releases and support for even higher standards of solar equipment... 

Manufacturer targets product releases,  skills development
OFF THE GRID Microcare plans to share its local story of innovation, job creation and skills development next year during its 30th year of manufacturing in South Africa

Green cement? Captured carbon may fuel new markets and help climate

By: Reuters     7th November 2019 Capturing planet-warming carbon dioxide and turning it into useful products, from plastics to jet fuel, could make climate action cheaper and become a good business - but market obstacles need to be overcome first, researchers said on Thursday. Companies are already turning carbon dioxide... 

Calls for urgent action to stem the rising tide of waste

By: Kim Cloete     7th November 2019 Some countries are stepping up their use of technology in the way waste is disposed of, although far more needs to be done to sort waste into streams and step up recycling worldwide, the Landfill 2019 conference in Cape Town has heard. US-based leader within the geosynthetic environmental... 

Experts call for overhaul in the way waste is managed in South Africa

By: Kim Cloete     7th November 2019 Experts have called for changes in the way municipalities dispose of waste in South Africa, saying that up to 90% of waste goes to landfills, most of which are uncontrolled dump sites. Council for Scientific and Industrial Research principal scientist: waste and circular economy Professor Linda... 

Coca-Cola chooses plastic bottle collection over aluminium cans to cut carbon footprint

By: Reuters     7th November 2019 Coca-Cola is committed to collecting and recycling plastic bottles rather than switching to aluminium cans as the world's largest soft drinks maker seeks to reduce its carbon footprint, its chief executive officer told Reuters. Along with multinational rivals including PepsiCo and Nestle,... 

Next-generation protein could come from air, methane, volcanic springs

By: Reuters     6th November 2019 It may sound like science fiction, but in a few short years the family dinner table may be laden with steak from a printer and other proteins produced from air, methane or volcanic microbes. With the explosive success of vegan beef and burger substitutes developed by Beyond Meat and Impossible... 

TDB, UNEP remain committed to climate change mitigation

By: Simone Liedtke     6th November 2019 In a pledge to continue improving on its commitment to climate change mitigation and adaptation action, the Eastern and Southern African Trade and Development Bank (TDB) has signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP). The MoU establishes a... 

TDB, UNEP remain committed to climate change mitigation

Sasol sets out plan to cut emissions by 10% by 2030  

By: Marleny Arnoldi     5th November 2019 Petrochemicals giant Sasol is targeting a 10% reduction in its greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions by 2030, bringing the current 56-million tonnes a year of emissions down to 50-million tonnes. This forms part of Sasol’s commitment to mitigate climate change, especially considering that the group is... 

Sasol sets out plan to cut emissions by 10% by 2030
Sasol Southern Africa operations VP Bernard Klingenberg and climate change VP Shamini Harrington unpack the company’s inaugural climate change report. Video: Kutlwano Matlala. Editing: Nicholas Boyd.

V&A Waterfront achieves diamond status under heritage, environmental classification

By: Simone Liedtke     5th November 2019 The V&A Waterfront, in the Western Cape, has become the first African company of its size and magnitude to achieve diamond-class status under the Heritage Environmental Management classification, it said in a statement on Tuesday.   

Local ESG Committee wins international award

By: Simone Liedtke     1st November 2019 The South African Guideline for the reporting of Environmental, Social and Governance Parameters within the Mining and Oil and Gas Industries was the recipient of this year’s United Nations Intergovernmental Working Group of Experts on International Standards of Accounting and Reporting (ISAR)... 

Tourism, energy at risk as Africa's largest waterfall runs low

By: , Bloomberg     1st November 2019 The flow at the Africa’s biggest waterfall is at its lowest since 1995, highlighting the threat posed by a drought to tourism and electricity generation in Zimbabwe and Zambia. Flow has slumped to 109 m3/s at Victoria Falls, a 1.7 km curtain of falling water at the peak of a normal wet season,... 

Tourism, energy at risk as Africa's largest waterfall runs low
Photo by Bloomberg
The Victoria Falls before the drought

Alstom to test hydrogen-powered Coradia iLint in Netherlands

By: Simone Liedtke     1st November 2019 Rail transport company Alstom has partnered with the Dutch Province of Groningen, local operator Arriva, Dutch railway infrastructure manager ProRail and energy company Engie on a pilot project to test the Coradia iLint in the Netherlands. The Coradia iLint is the world’s first passenger train... 

Europe assesses 5 new critical minerals in low carbon quest

By: Reuters     31st October 2019 The European Commission is assessing five new minerals for possible inclusion in a revised list of critical raw materials to be published next year, as it seeks to bolster supply chains for a low emissions economy, a senior Commission official said. The European Union, the United States and... 

Chile withdraws as host of trade and climate summits

By: Reuters     30th October 2019 Chile has withdrawn as host of the APEC trade summit in November and the COP25 climate summit in December after several weeks of violent unrest, President Sebastian Pinera announced on Wednesday. The APEC summit was scheduled to bring together 20 world leaders, including US President Donald... 

Kenyan team aim to stop fatal snake bites

By: Reuters     29th October 2019 Kenyan mother Beth Mwende heard her sleeping three-year-old cry out, but did not worry further after the child quickly settled - until the next morning, when she found her daughter, Mercy, semi-conscious with two fang marks in the neck. "I did not know that it was a snake," Mwende said, as she... 

Sasol mulling several gas supply options as it seeks to reduce carbon footprint   

By: Terence Creamer     28th October 2019 Chemicals and energy group Sasol is investigating several gas-supply alternatives for its coal-heavy South African operations as it seeks ways to reduce its carbon footprint. The JSE-listed group is simultaneously working on a ‘sustainability roadmap’, which will have a strong focus on lowering... 

Sasol mulling several gas supply options as it seeks to reduce carbon footprint
Chemicals and energy group Sasol is investigating several gas-supply alternatives for its coal-heavy South African operations as it seeks ways to reduce its carbon footprint. The JSE-listed group is simultaneously working on a ‘sustainability roadmap’, which will have a strong focus on lowering its greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. Video and editing: Darlene Creamer 28.10.2019

Metals sector in costly battle to turn green

By: Reuters     25th October 2019 Metals producers, from miners to smelters, are grappling with increasingly tough and costly environmental demands imposed by banks seeking cleaner investments. While the transition may prove overwhelming for smaller producers, larger companies are playing a long game, casting ahead to a period... 

Launch in sight for new protective gloves range

By: Khutso Maphatsoe     25th October 2019 Personal protective equipment (PPE) supplier G.Fox will launch the Evolution Gloves range by the end of this month, which G.Fox marketing manager Shaun Botha says is a combination of innovation, dedication, passion, pride and new technology. “Designed and tested for safety, comfort and endurance,... 

Launch in sight for new protective gloves range
FULLY COVERED The Evolution Gloves are designed to fit closely to offer superior grip and protection without compromising the sense of touch and freedom of movement to carry out intricate tasks

Event seeks to stimulate earth observation sector in South Africa

By: Rebecca Campbell     25th October 2019 The 2019 Earth Observation (EO) Challenge is now under way. This is the fourth iteration of the competition, conceived by the South African National Space Agency (Sansa), designed to stimulate and promote the local Earth observation products and services sector. In this year’s challenge, which... 

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