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Environmental News

Trading remains positive for Mondi as macroeconomic uncertainties remain

By: Simone Liedtke     5th August 2021 While macroeconomic uncertainties remain, trading is positive for paper and packaging manufacturer Mondi, which expects to see the full impact of the price increases implemented to date and the continued contribution from its capital investment projects during the second half of this year. 

Mpact remains ‘firmly anchored’ in making a difference on the back of robust interim results 

By: Simone Liedtke     5th August 2021 South African paper and packaging business and recycler Mpact remains “firmly anchored” in its purpose of making a difference by providing customers with sustainable packaging and giving effect to the circular economy through its integrated business model. CEO Bruce Strong said on August 5 that... 

Pic of Mpact Polymers recycling in Wadevil.=le.
Mpact's Bruce Strong and Brett Clark give Engineering News some more insight on the company's results, and some external factors that had an impact. Video: Recorded on Zoom. Editing: Creamer Media's Nicholas Boyd.

Delaying emissions reduction will cost more down the line, climate commission director warns 

By: Terence Creamer     5th August 2021 Presidential Climate Commission executive director Dr Crispian Olver says delaying South Africa’s transition away from coal will only add to the final adjustment costs and will also place the domestic business sector at a competitive disadvantage as other countries implement measures to restrict... 

Photo of coal mining in the foreground with an Eskom power station in the background
Photo by Creamer Media
Coal mining in the foreground with an Eskom power station in the background

South Africa's plans for COP26  

5th August 2021 Creamer Media's Chanel de Bruyn speaks to Engineering News Editor Terence Creamer about what South Africa is aiming to achieve at the upcoming COP26 climate negotiations, what a just transition could look like for South Africa and the main risks to achieving a successful just energy transition. 

Photo of Terence Creamer
South Africa's plans for COP26

From a coal-to-gas conversion to a microgrid factory, Eskom builds Komati’s just energy transaction case 

By: Terence Creamer     3rd August 2021 State-owned electricity utility Eskom is hoping to transform the workshops at the Komati power station – identified as the flagship site for the piloting of a broader ‘just energy transition’ programme that couples decarbonisation with social upliftment – into a factory capable of manufacturing... 

Photograph of the Komati power station
A file photo of the Komati power station, which has generated electricity since 1961

Other procurement plans not affected by RMIPPPP deadline delay to end Sept – DMRE  

By: Terence Creamer     2nd August 2021 The deadline for projects selected as preferred bids under the Risk Mitigation Independent Power Producer Procurement Programme (RMIPPPP) to reach commercial close has been extended to September 30, from an initial deadline of the end of July. However, the Department of Mineral Resources and... 

Photo of Minister Gwede Mantashe
Photo by Creamer Media Chief Photographer Donna Slater
Minister Gwede Mantashe announced the initial end-July commercial-close deadline on March 18

Kibo forms working relationship with IGES to pursue South African waste-to-energy projects

By: Donna Slater     30th July 2021 Africa-focused energy company Kibo Energy has satisfied all conditions required, and completed an agreement with South Africa-based Industrial Green Energy Solutions (IGES), to jointly develop a portfolio of waste-to-energy projects in South Africa. The companies entered into an agreement to... 

Ramaphosa sees big green economy opportunity in ‘bold’ climate commitment  

By: Terence Creamer     30th July 2021 President Cyril Ramaphosa says it is time for South Africa to “grasp the nettle” and embark on a “transformative path” towards a climate-resilient society both to fulfil its moral obligations in the face of an intensifying crisis, but also to seize the economic and job opportunities that are... 

Photo of President Cyril Ramaphosa
President Cyril Ramaphosa

Use COP26 to position South Africa as destination of choice for rapid decarbonisation investment – Moosa

By: Terence Creamer     29th July 2021 Deputy chair of South Africa’s Presidential Climate Commission (PCC) Valli Moosa has presented an upbeat assessment of the country’s ability to position itself as a preferred global destination for foreign and domestic decarbonisation investment. Speaking during a hydrogen-focused webinar on... 

Photo of Presidential Climate Commission deputy chair Valli Moosa speaking during a green hydrogen webinar
Presidential Climate Commission deputy chair Valli Moosa speaks during a green hydrogen webinar

Creecy calls on rich countries to dramatically raise climate finance pledges from $100bn ‘floor’ 

By: Terence Creamer     27th July 2021 Forestry, Fisheries and the Environment Minister Barbara Creecy has called on the developed countries to ensure access to long-term, predictable and affordable climate finance for developing countries. Creecy participated in a July Climate Ministerial meeting hosted in London, in the UK, this... 

Photo of Forestry, Fisheries and the Environment Minister Barbara Creecy
Photo by Creamer Media's Donna Slater
Forestry, Fisheries and the Environment Minister Barbara Creecy

eThekwini, DFFE helping UPL with Cornubia chemical clean-up efforts

By: Schalk Burger     26th July 2021 The eThekwini municipality, the Department of Forestry, Fisheries and the Environment (DFFE) and specialists from the municipality, the department and the private sector are advising and helping chemical company UPL to clean up the spill that happened in Cornubia, Durban, following the recent... 

Hybrid solar installation completed in Zimbabwe

By: Halima Frost     23rd July 2021 The active partnership between South Africa-based solar solutions provider Blockpower SA and German-managed microgrid integrator Dhybrid has resulted in the completion of a 1.4 MWp, 1 MVA, 480 kWh hybrid solar system at an agriculture estate, in Zimbabwe. The Tanganda Tea Company, which operates... 

Large solar plant at an agriculture estate Zimbabwe
OFF GRID The hybrid solar installation installed by Blockpower SA and Dhybrid was tailor made for the client in Zimbabwe

Report suggests 10% reuse of plastics will halve such ocean-going litter

By: Donna Slater     22nd July 2021 A key finding of the ‘Future of Reusable Consumption Model’ report suggests that it is possible to prevent almost half of yearly plastic ocean waste by reusing just 10% of all plastics consumed, as an integral part of the reduce-reuse-recycle agenda. The report – a collaboration between... 

Creecy 'deeply concerned' about air quality, marine ecosystems after fire at Durban chemical plant

By: News24Wire      22nd July 2021 The Department of Forestry, Fisheries and the Environment said it was concerned about the impact of a chemical fire at the UPL chemical plant in Cornubia, Durban, on air quality and marine ecosystems. The plant was torched during the unrest in KwaZulu-Natal last week. "We are deeply concerned... 

Challenge launched to promote solutions that address marine plastic waste

By: Donna Slater     21st July 2021 Innovation foundation Nesta Challenges has launched the Afri-Plastics Challenge as part of its efforts to find African innovators with scalable and sustainable solutions to prevent plastic waste from entering the marine environment in sub-Saharan Africa. The challenge involves a public... 

Treasury publishes amendments to the Carbon Offsets Regulations

By: Simone Liedtke     20th July 2021 The National Treasury has published the Gazetted amendments to the Carbon Offsets Regulations in terms of Section 19 (c) of the Carbon Tax Act. The Carbon Offsets Regulations set out the eligibility criteria for carbon offset projects, a procedure for taxpayers claiming the carbon offset... 

Carbon emissions to reach record levels in 2023 as stimulus spending fails to match net-zero ambition  

By: Terence Creamer     20th July 2021 The financial resources allocated by governments globally to clean-energy measures in response to the Covid-19 crisis currently represents only 2% of the $16-trillion in total fiscal support set aside for economic stimulus, the International Energy Agency’s (IEA’s) new Sustainable Recovery... 

Photo of IEA executive director Fatih Birol
IEA executive director Fatih Birol

Global Alliance’s Green New Deal working to advance transformative policies

By: Simone Liedtke     19th July 2021 A new Global Alliance for a Green New Deal brings together 21 politicians from around the world united in the belief that targets, although important, “don’t change things, policy does”. Launched on July 19, the Global Alliance sees each of the contributing lawmakers already working to advance... 

Durban beaches closed after chemical spill, possibly unrest related

By: News24Wire      16th July 2021 Beaches near Umhlanga have been closed, following a chemical spill in Durban. The spill appears to have originated from a chemical warehouse fire in Umhlanga that was caused during unrest that gripped KwaZulu-Natal this week. Other sources are being investigated. 

Holistic strategy needed to tackle growing marine plastic crisis

By: Donna Slater     16th July 2021 As the marine ecosystem plays an critical role in mitigating climate change, through absorbing carbon dioxide (CO2), cooling the environment and sustaining delicate marine wildlife, it is becoming increasingly important to mitigate a mounting problem – the leakage of plastic waste into Oceans and... 

Image of Engineering News and Mining Weekly 16 July 2021 cover.

Regulatory compliance key to driving sustainability

16th July 2021 For South Africa to work toward economic recovery, it will be necessary for organisations to re-prioritise compliance to ensure both economic and environmental sustainability in the long term, says economic development agency Economic Development Solutions (EDM) MD Janine Espin. In the past year,... 

JANINE ESPIN
Organisations should seek the guidance of compliance specialists
JANINE ESPIN Organisations should seek the guidance of compliance specialists

EU carbon adjustment mechanism may do little to mitigate climate change, Unctad warns

By: Simone Liedtke     15th July 2021 The European Union (EU) carbon border adjustment mechanism (CBAM) could change trade patterns in favour of countries where production is relatively carbon efficient, but do little to mitigate climate change, the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (Unctad) has warned. A report... 

Increasing waste generation requires a new approach

By: Schalk Burger     9th July 2021 The expected increase in solid waste generated by cities each year, from two-billion tonnes a year now to 3.4-billion tonnes a year by 2050, means new plans for dealing with waste and protecting biodiversity are necessary. This will require changing the global "throw away" culture, says waste... 

How climate change is driving adoption of technology in agriculture

By: Marleny Arnoldi     9th July 2021 Environmental phenomena such as climate change and its manifestations, including extreme weather events, are featuring more prominently on the risk radar of investors, banks and commercial farmers, as agricultural activity intensifies in order to provide sufficient food for a growing population.... 

How climate change is driving adoption of technology in agriculture

Green Climate Fund contributes $170m to African energy access programme

By: Marleny Arnoldi     7th July 2021 The board of the Green Climate Fund (GCF) has approved $170.9-million in financing for the African Development Bank’s (AfDB’s) Leveraging Energy Access Finance Framework (LEAF) programme. The programme aims to unlock commercial and local-currency financing for decentralised renewable energy... 

Kenya's KenGen says CERs for sale more than double

By: Reuters     6th July 2021 Kenya's largest utility said on Tuesday its certified emission reduction credits (CERs) available for sale had more than doubled to over 550 000. A CER is equivalent to one tonne of carbon dioxide and they are part of emission reduction efforts under the Kyoto Protocol. 

Sasol, IDC team up to stimulate South Africa’s green-hydrogen industry 

By: Terence Creamer     5th July 2021 JSE-listed Sasol and the State-owned Industrial Development Corporation (IDC) have signed a memorandum of cooperation to jointly advance South Africa’s green-hydrogen economy. In a joint statement, the two companies said the memorandum recognised that South Africa was in a unique position to... 

Power lines with Sasol's Secunda complex in the background
Photo by Creamer Media
Power lines with Sasol's Secunda complex in the background

ECMBC, Nafcoc to appeal DFFE’s decision over Karpowership SA’s EIAs

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     5th July 2021 The Eastern Cape Maritime Business Chamber (ECMBC) and the National African Federated Chamber of Commerce and Industry (Nafcoc) Nelson Mandela Bay (NMB) region on July 5 said that would appeal the decision by the Department of Forestry, Fisheries and the Environment (DFFE) not to approve... 

Sapro, MyPlas sign Operation Clean-Sweep pledge

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     2nd July 2021 Industry organisation the South African Plastics Recycling Organisation (Sapro) and manufacturer of recycled plastic compounds MyPlas have become the latest signatories of Operation Clean Sweep (OCS) – an international stewardship programme designed to keep plastic pellets, flakes and powders out... 

Climate change makes early flood warning more vital, says SRK

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     2nd July 2021 With extreme weather conditions posing an increasing threat to lives and assets, South Africa’s disaster management capacity needs to include better early warning systems for key risks such as flooding, consultancy SRK Consulting says. SRK Consulting senior civil engineer Natasha Ramdass says... 

Natasha Ramdass
Natasha Ramdass

Climate Commission sees no downside to more ambitious emissions pledge 

By: Terence Creamer     2nd July 2021 South Africa’s Presidential Climate Commission (PCC) has recommended that government make an improved carbon-reduction commitment to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change in its updated Nationally Determined Contribution (NDC) and should also confirm a long-term target of... 

President Cyril Ramaphosa
President Cyril Ramaphosa

Energy transition to have a net positive effect on jobs  

2nd July 2021 Creamer Media's Chanel de Bruyn speaks to Engineering News Editor Terence Creamer about a new report published by the International Renewable Energy Agency that shows that an energy transition aligned with a 1.5°C-compatible climate pathway will have a net positive effects on job creation and... 

Energy transition to have a net positive effect on jobs
Energy transition to have a net positive effect on jobs

ZSD developed for water treatment plants

2nd July 2021 Metallurgical industry plant supplier SMS group is committed to taking care of the environment and has developed an environmentally beneficial product called Zero Solid Discharge (ZSD). ZSD is a water treatment plant for metal industries. 

DIRECT COMPARISON 
The microbial product is composed of a mix of non-genetically modified natural bacteria and their micronutrients and reduces suspended and surface oil
DIRECT COMPARISON The microbial product is composed of a mix of non-genetically modified natural bacteria and their micronutrients and reduces suspended and surface oil

Testing can ensure safe communication on mines

By: Cameron Mackay     2nd July 2021 The potential dangers of working underground make reliable communication vital for improving safety and enhancing operational efficiency, says communications device provider Ya Batho sales and operations manager Craig Franck who stresses the importance of using wireless communication equipment... 

SAFER, DEEPER MINING
From its inception, Ya Batho decided to make products appropriate in explosive environments and close to electronic equipment, without interference, to adhere to mining regulations
SAFER, DEEPER MINING From its inception, Ya Batho decided to make products appropriate in explosive environments and close to electronic equipment, without interference, to adhere to mining regulations

Itochu partners with Shell to lower its mining sites’ carbon footprint

By: Donna Slater     1st July 2021 Petrochemicals company Shell International and Tokyo-headquartered investment firm Itochu Corporation have agreed to collaborate to accelerate the digitalisation and decarbonisation of Itochu’s mining sites, as well as increase the operational efficiency thereof. Shell will offer its sectoral... 

Climate finance to low-, middle-income countries reached $38bn in 2020

By: Schalk Burger     1st July 2021 Climate finance committed by major multilateral development banks (MDBs) reached $66-billion in 2020, with 58%, or $38-billion, of that committed to low- and middle-income economies, the 2020 Joint Report on MBD Climate Finance, shows. Nearly $50-billion, or 76%, of total MDB climate finance in... 

Biggest China bank walks away from $3bn Zimbabwe coal plan 

By: Bloomberg     30th June 2021 China’s biggest bank has dumped plans to fund a $3-billion coal-fired power plant in Zimbabwe, in a blow to a two-decade effort to develop the project, according to a coalition of 32 environmental groups. Industrial and Commercial Bank of China told Go Clean ICBC, which includes environmental... 

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