Environment

Eskom crippling our water resources

It’s a simple truth: water is fundamental to life, we can’t live without it. The problem, though, is that water is becoming an increasingly scarce resource; one South Africa is running short of. By 2030 it’s expected that our demand for water will outstrip what’s available by a staggering 17%. Already more than 98% of…

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Something worth saving

We’re about 300km off the coast of South Africa, sailing in the high seas of the Indian Ocean. During the night we caught up to a Spanish longliner, one of the many foreign vessels fishing in the region, others coming from places like Taiwan, Japan, and the United Kingdom. Since yesterday morning we’ve been in…

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Why isn’t shark finning news?

I saw six sharks being cut up for their fins yesterday. And as monstrous as it was, it won’t make headlines, it isn’t News: currently the fins from between 26 million and 73 million sharks are sold a year, that’s up to 8 000 sharks killed an hour. And the market is booming. I’m currently…

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Drilling Africa’s Arctic

The Virunga National Park, Africa’s oldest Unesco World Heritage Site, is situated along the border of the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) and Uganda. It contains more species of mammals, reptiles and birds than any other protected area on the continent. It has an exceptional diversity of landscapes stretching from the glaciers of the…

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Did you buy into Nedbank’s greenwash?

As the bank with “green answers” – according to their marketing campaign – I have a few questions for Nedbank. Nedbank has put a lot of effort into creating the impression of being a ‘green’ bank. They have an entire website devoted to the environment, and a range of account options with a green ‘flavour’….

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Kusile protest: Greenpeace disputes Eskom claims

I was one of the Greenpeace climbers who scaled the crane inside Eskom’s Kusile construction plant on Monday morning. In climbing the crane and dropping the two banners, our goal was to highlight the true cost of coal-fired electricity in South Africa. We wanted to put Kusile back on the agenda after months of dialogue,…

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Imagine your electricity bill went up 459%

You’ll often hear that renewable energy is a nice idea, but it’s simply too expensive to be a realistic option. The choice between burning coal and switching to renewable energy is said to be a simple cost calculation — one that coal wins every time. It’s the rationale for why Eskom is going ahead with…

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Things aren’t alright

I’ve been writing for Thought Leader for roughly two years, and consistently on the same types of issues. I write about consumerism, “affluenza”, climate change, environmental degradation, oil and coal addiction, and the politics of eating meat — and after each piece, when I go through the comments, I’m left with the same overwhelming feeling:…

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Thoughts on the Greenpeace action at Eskom

Recently Greenpeace Africa took action at Eskom’s Megawatt Park, dumping five tonnes of coal at one entrance to the power utility’s headquarters. The act was a protest against the way Eskom produces South Africa’s electricity, 90% of which comes from climate-changing coal. As the twelth largest CO2 emitter in the world, located at the foot…

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There’s no place for fracking in our future

Recently I went to a public debate about fracking in the Karoo. The motion debated related to the moratorium that’s been imposed — should it be permanent or simply scrapped altogether? The four speakers — two in favour of the moratorium, and two against — each presented their views and spoke about numerous aspects of…

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