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Environmental Studies News

Seminar commemorates World Metrology Day, with a focus on sustainability

By: Sabrina Jardim     20th May 2024 In celebration of the first Unesco-recognised World Metrology Day on May 20, as well as a global emphasis on climate change and sustainability, the National Metrology Institute of South Africa (NMISA) held a World Metrology Day seminar, focused on the theme of ‘measurement science in support of... 

Boiler rebuild to be delivered to biomass power station

17th May 2024 Flow control solutions developer Valmet announced in April that it would deliver a major boiler rebuild to the Steven’s Croft biomass power station in Lockerbie, Scotland in the UK, which is operated by energy infrastructure operator E.ON. The order is included in Valmet’s orders received in the... 

The Steven’s Croft biomass power station in Lockerbie, Scotland in the UK
POWERFUL REVAMP The boiler build being undertaken by Valmet for the Steven’s Croft biomass power station will increase efficiencies and output

Water a hurdle in Africa’s development - expert

10th May 2024 Water scarcity poses a significant hurdle to Africa's growth and development, with climate change and deteriorating infrastructure intensifying the challenges, says advisory and analytics firm Frost & Sullivan consultant Hannro Steenekamp. He explains that South Africa’s ongoing water crisis,... 

A black and white image of a hand under a tap with a trickle of water
WATER, WATER EVERYWHERE BUT... The scarcity of drinkable water is denting the development of Africa as a continentent

Organisers expect record attendance at event

By: Halima Frost     10th May 2024 With ballooning foot traffic, demonstrated by an increase in attendance of 81% from 2022 to 2023, the organisers of this year’s Enlit Africa anticipate a “bumper event that will be attended by global dignitaries and industry leaders”. The Enlit Africa 2024 will be held at the Cape Town... 

A man standing on a podium at last years Enlit Africa Event
TAKING TO THE FUTURE This years Enlit Africa theme – Less Talk, More Action – aims to encourage attendees and speakers to move away from talk in favour of action and implementatio

Cooling company to highlight new concepts

By: Halima Frost     10th May 2024 After two successful webinars that unpacked the use of air-cooled condensers (ACC) for recoverable energy in power generation, thermal solutions specialist Industrial Water Cooling (IWC) aims to address future clients and investors at this year’s Enlit Africa 2024, which will be held at the Cape... 

An air-cooled condensers designed and manufactured by IWC
COOL AS A CUCUMBER According to thermal solutions specialist Industrial Water Coolin air-cooled condensers are the most efficient, green option for cooling

Cumulative effort to transform grids a hot topic

By: Halima Frost     10th May 2024 Of the 103 countries that in 2020 pledged to reduce global carbon dioxide (CO2) and methane emissions by at least 30%, 54 are African, says global technology giant Siemens South Africa CEO sub-Saharan Africa Sabine Dall’Omo. These countries have agreed to implement Nationally Determined... 

Siemens South Africa CEO sub-Saharan Africa Sabine Dall’Omo standing on a stage talking
SABINE DALL"OMO A panel – The Factors Determining Success in Transitioning to a Low-Carbon Future – will be sponsored by Siemens, and be led by Dall’Omo on May 22

Opinion: Pollution in the Vaal Triangle – progress, but more must be done

2nd May 2024 In this article, ArcelorMittal South Africa (AMSA) CEO Kobus Verster writes that industry across the Vaal Triangle, together with responsible corporate citizens in the steel industry, must constantly improve their overall environmental performance above and beyond air quality indicators. 

AMSA CEO Kobus Verster
Photo by Creamer Media's Donna Slater
AMSA CEO Kobus Verster

CSIR joins international science community to improve understanding of ocean metabolism

By: Sabrina Jardim     17th April 2024 The Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) has recently joined a new global research programme focused on improving understanding of the future state of the oceans under various climate change scenarios. Led by CSIR principal researcher Dr Tommy Ryan-Keogh, the programme, titled... 

IWMSA stresses importance of combatting plastic pollution

By: Sabrina Jardim     17th April 2024 Amid an increasing need to combat plastic pollution, the Institute of Waste Management of Southern Africa (IWMSA) highlights the need for concerted efforts to combat plastic pollution in South Africa. IWMSA president Mpendulo Ginindza notes that the plastic economy in South Africa is based on a... 

South Africa seeks to secure global plastics pollution treaty by balancing competing interests – Creecy

By: Schalk Burger     12th April 2024 South Africa will seek to secure a legally binding global plastics pollution and marine litter treaty in negotiations at upcoming global meetings by balancing competing demands, Forestry, Fisheries and the Environment Minister Barbara Creecy told the media on April 12. The Department of Forestry,... 

Forestry, Fisheries and the Environment Minister Barbara Creecy
Forestry, Fisheries and the Environment Minister Barbara Creecy

People at the heart of South Africa’s water sector recovery

By: Natasha Odendaal     12th April 2024 The complexity of the water sector in South Africa, along with the numerous and seemingly insurmountable challenges faced, demands a series of integrated interventions – and people are at the centre of these solutions. South Africa’s long-known water woes are the result of several factors,... 

Magazine Cover image

Wind energy poses increased fall risks

By: Halima Frost     12th April 2024 As the demand for greener energy helps drive the increased uptake of wind energy, the dangers that face workers in the sector are becoming even more evident. As reported by the US Occupational Safety and Health Administration in a report named ‘Green Job Hazards’, workers in the wind energy... 

Two men wearing PPE and safety harnesses working on teh turbines of a wind turbine stack
TALL ORDER Maintaining safety standards especially in the wind turbine installation and maintenance sector has come to the fore as the development of green energy gains impetus

Woolworths pilots the removal of plastic barrier bags at 12 stores

By: Sabrina Jardim     9th April 2024 Food and clothing retailer Woolworths has launched a 12-store trial to remove plastic barrier bags from its stores. Starting on April 8 in four Western Cape-based stores, namely Table Bay Mall, Waterstone Village, Plattekloof Village and Palmyra Junction, the eight-week trial will extend on April... 

Eskom defends pollution record, saying it’s spending billions

By: Bloomberg     8th April 2024 South Africa’s State power utility, stung by reports about the health impacts of emissions from burning coal, said it’s spending billions of dollars to reduce them and has an ambitious target to reduce output of one of its most dangerous pollutants. Eskom Holdings said it’s committed to a... 

Eskom's Duvha power station

88% of global fossil fuel, cement CO2 emissions linked to 117 producers

By: Darren Parker     4th April 2024 A new report, released on April 4 by InfluenceMap using the Carbon Majors database, shows that 88% of global carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions from fossil fuels and cement from 2016 through 2022 can be linked to 117 producers. In addition, most fossil fuel companies produced more fossil fuels in the... 

fossil fuel emissions

Agriculture, fossil fuel burning the main reasons why Africa is emitting more carbon

By: Marleny Arnoldi     3rd April 2024 Research by University of the Witwatersrand (Wits) academics finds that Africa has moved from being a net carbon sink to a net carbon source in nine years, meaning the rate at which carbon is being released from the continent has increased. Wits explains that Africa went from absorbing more... 

Livestock farm

South Africa coal-plant closure delays risk thousands of deaths

By: Bloomberg     3rd April 2024 Delays to the planned closures of coal-fired power plants proposed by South Africa’s energy department could result in thousands of deaths from air pollution and lead to billions of dollars of health-related costs, an air-quality research agency said. The projection about the health impacts of... 

Coal station

Masslift Africa launches Mitsubishi Forklift’s new Grendia series in South Africa  

3rd April 2024 Forklift products and services provider Masslift Africa, in partnership with Mitsubishi Forklift Trucks, in March launched Mitsubishi’s new-generation Grendia forklift series for the Southern African market. 

Masslift Africa launches Mitsubishi Forklift’s new Grendia series in South Africa
Masslift Africa launches Mitsubishi Forklift’s new Grendia series in South Africa

Indigenous resources must benefit South African communities, says Ramaphosa 

By: Sabrina Jardim     26th March 2024 With a global emphasis on sustainability and the effects of climate change becoming more apparent, President Cyril Ramaphosa described the sustainable use of biodiversity as the “pillar of rural economies” across South Africa. In a keynote address at the inaugural Biodiversity Economy and... 

President Cyril Ramaphosa
President Cyril Ramaphosa discusses climate change and how indigenous resources can benefit local communities

Companies unveil Kelvin power station carbon capture pilot project 

By: Schalk Burger     22nd March 2024 The 600 MW coal-fired Kelvin power station, in Isando, Ekurhuleni, has installed a 300 m3/h flue gas emissions capturing pilot project, which removes carbon dioxide (CO₂), nitrogen oxides and sulphur oxides to make sulphuric acid, ammonium sulphate and ammonium bicarbonate (ABC) crystals. These... 

The carbon capture pilot plant at the Kelvin power station
The carbon capture pilot plant at the Kelvin power station

Sustainable energy transition on track for mining industry

22nd March 2024 The energy transition and the global move towards net zero by 2050 require coordinated action by mining companies, governments, unions and communities to ensure just transitions for coal mines and communities, according to a recent press release authored by Webber Wentzel partners Bruce Dickinson... 

An image of Bruce Dickinson
BRUCE DICKINSON The energy transition will entail a shift from fossil fuels to clean energy sources

Unprecedented crime levels threaten mining’s sustainability

By: Marleny Arnoldi     22nd March 2024 Amid South Africa’s ticking of all the boxes for a fertile environment for organised crime – economic inequality, rampant crime, widespread government corruption and poorly performing State organs – addressing security is a key part of ensuring the sustainability of the mining industry. During... 

Magazine cover image

Forestry value chain innovations can help mitigate effects of climate change

By: Lumkile Nkomfe      22nd March 2024 Given the climate crisis in South Africa and around the world, tertiary education institution University of Pretoria’s (UP’s) Technology and Innovation senior lecturer Dr Schalk Grobbelaar argues that innovations in the forestry value chain will be key in safeguarding the environment.  “When a... 

An image of Dr Schalk Grobbelaar
SCHALK GROBBELAAR When a tree grows, it takes in carbon dioxide, produces oxygen and uses the carbon as a building block for its growth

Technological solutions key to creating climate-resilient future

By: Lumkile Nkomfe      22nd March 2024 Leading subsurface software technology company Seequent highlights that technology solutions will assist in mitigating the global threat of climate change. Seequent, The Bentley Subsurface Company, builds “world-leading technology that is at the forefront of Earth Sciences”.  

A generic split image of a drought-affected tree and grass contrasted with lush grass and a leafy tree
MITIGATING THREATS Climate change poses significant threats to long-term food and water security

Zambezi river flow recedes amid reduced rainfall, El Niño

By: Sabrina Jardim     20th March 2024 The river flows at Chavuma gauging station, the first gauging station located in the North-Western province of Zambia and which measures river flows as the Zambezi river enters Zambia from Angola, have been increasing slowly this month, says the Zambezi River Authority. The slow increase has been... 

Thungela launches fish breeding facility in Mpumalanga  

20th March 2024 Coal producer and exporter Thungela in February launched a fish breeding facility at the Loskop Dam Nature Reserve, in Mpumalanga, to mitigate some of the impacts of an uncontrolled release of mine-affected water in the area. Tasneem Bulbulia tells us more. 

Thungela launches fish breeding facility in Mpumalanga
Thungela launches fish breeding facility in Mpumalanga

Campaigns can help maximise water recovery – firm 

By: Lumkile Nkomfe      15th March 2024 In light of the recent surge of waterborne disease outbreaks, water shedding, supply disruptions and emerging water scarcity, water-solutions company Talbot positively embraces this year’s Water Week theme of Water For All. This year’s National Water Week is scheduled to take place from March 20... 

An image of a Talbot water treatment plant in Pietermaritzburg, KwaZulu-Natal
Talbot CEO Carl Haycock discussing the water crisis ahead of this year’s National Water Week. Recording: Lumkile Nkomfe. Editing: Shadwyn Dickinson. Recorded 16-02-2024

Company aims to accelerate provision of basic human right

By: Lumkile Nkomfe      15th March 2024 Amid South Africa’s water infrastructure crisis, global water solutions company Xylem says improving public awareness on water scarcity, quality and sustainability remain crucial in fast-tracking collective efforts to safeguard the provisioning of potable water. The company commends the Water for... 

An image of Chetan Mistry
HOLISTIC APPROACH REQUIRED Water connect organisations and the communities they serve. It's not effective to focus only on narrow areas

Firm offers expertise on water use applications

15th March 2024 Global mining consultancy SRK Consulting hails the introduction of the Department of Water and Sanitation’s (DWS’s) Electronic Water Use Licence Application and Authorisation System (E-WULAAS). The company regards this as an important aspect of the water application process. This electronic... 

An image of SRK principal environmental scientist Avril Owens
AVRIL OWENS Structured and agreed upon communication protocols with DWS officials are vital

Promoting access through collaboration

15th March 2024 Global water solutions and technology company Xylem is undertaking a strategic collaboration partnership with the African Water and Sanitation Association (AfWASA) to help increase access to safe drinking water and sanitation solutions. The two organisations have a memorandum of understanding... 

Energy industry’s methane emissions near record despite pledges

By: Bloomberg     13th March 2024 Global methane emissions from fossil fuels held near a record high last year, the International Energy Agency (IEA) said in its annual 'Methane Tracker' report, renewing concerns that governments and industry aren’t doing enough to stem releases of the devastating greenhouse gas. While the... 

Methane emissions in the oil and gas industry

Energy-related emissions increased in 2023, but grew by less than 2022, IEA reports

By: Schalk Burger     1st March 2024 Global energy-related carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions rose less strongly in 2023 than the year before, even as total energy demand growth accelerated, with continued expansion of solar photovoltaic (PV), wind, nuclear power and electric cars helping the world avoid greater use of fossil fuels.... 

South African researchers trawl through death records to assess coal impact

By: Bloomberg     29th February 2024 South African scientists plan to examine about 8.5-million death certificates to ascertain how many people the country’s dependence on coal for electricity is killing. The review is the first of its kind in Africa in that it will depend on actual data rather than modeling the effects of air... 

South Africa’s inaugural Grid Emission Measure highlights coal dependence

By: Bloomberg     14th February 2024 South Africa produced its inaugural official gauge of the carbon intensity of its electricity production, confirming its status as one of the world’s top producers per capita of greenhouse gases. The Department of Forestry, Fisheries and he Environment this month said that the country’s domestic... 

Komati Power Station

Old Mutual Insure, UK specialist partner to address flood risk in South Africa

By: Sabrina Jardim     26th January 2024 South African insurance provider Old Mutual Insure has entered into a strategic partnership with UK-based flood science specialist JBA Risk Management to address flood risk in South Africa. The collaboration will allow Old Mutual Insure to provide invaluable support in navigating the challenges... 

SA-made nature-mimicking shark-barrier tech scores first commercial installation

By: Irma Venter     19th January 2024 The ecofriendly SharkSafe Barrier technology, developed by marine biologists at Stellenbosch University (SU) and their collaborators, and manufactured in the Western Cape, has been installed at a private island in the Bahamas in its first commercial deployment. The SharkSafe Barrier combines the... 

Project achieves financial close

15th December 2023 Independent power producer EDF Renewables achieved commercial and financial close on its Umoyilanga project on November 28, 2023, reaching commercial close with the Department of Mineral Resources and Energy (DMRE), and then concluding financial close with financial institutions Nedbank, RMB and... 

A sunset picture of solar panels with wind turbines in the background ad reflecting off the panels
KILLER COMBO The combination of wind and solar energy as well as battery storage will be used at the Umoyilanga project
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