The Minister of Environmental Affairs, Ms Nomvula Mokonyane, has published the Draft National Climate Change Adaptation Strategy for public comment in Government Gazette 42446 (Notice No 644).
The adaptation strategy has been developed in line with South Africa’s commitment to the Paris Agreement on Climate Change to introduce measures to adapt to the effects of climate change while achieving the stabilisation of greenhouse gas emissions and limiting temperature increases to 1.5°C. “The development of the strategy is central toward the attainment of the National Climate Change Response Policy objective of effectively managing the inevitable climate change impacts through interventions that build and sustain South Africa’s social, economic and environmental resilience and emergency response capacity,” said the Department of Environmental Affairs in a press statement.
According to the department, evidence exists that extreme weather events in South Africa are increasing, with heat-wave conditions found to be more likely, dry-spell durations lengthening slightly and rainfall intensity increasing. “Increases in annual-average near-surface temperatures are projected to occur over large parts of South Africa, including the western interior and northern parts of South Africa. Climate zones across the country are already shifting, ecosystems and landscapes are being degraded, veld fires are becoming more frequent, and overused natural terrestrial and marine systems are under stress,” said the department. They added that South Africa is therefore taking immediate action in planning for, and responding to, intensified climate change impacts. In particular, they said, urgent action in respect of managing water resources in a changing climate, planning for the potential impact on agricultural production, and ensuring that local governments are able to anticipate and reduce the risk of extreme events (such as floods and droughts) on human settlements.
“There is increasing international recognition that strong and sustainable socio-economic development can reduce vulnerability to climate change and ensure resilience. Adaptation to climate change presents South Africa with an opportunity to transform the economy, strengthen the social and spatial fabric, and become and build a climate resilient society. The National Climate Change Adaptation Strategy (NCCAS) provides a common vision of climate change adaptation and climate resilience for the country, and outlines priority areas for achieving this vision,” said the department.
To view the draft document, visit: https://www.environment.gov.za/sites/default/files/gazetted_notices/draftnational_climatechange_adaptationstrategy_g42446gon644.pdf
Members of the public or organisations are invited to submit to the Director-General, within 30 days of publication (6 May 2019) of the notice in the Gazette, written inputs and comments to The Director-General, Department of Environmental Affairs, Attention: Mr Sibonelo Mbanjwa, Private Bag X447, Pretoria, 0001. The input can also be e-mailed to email@example.com.
Any inquiries in connection with the Notice can be directed to Mr Sibonelo Mbanjwa at Tel: 012 399 9175 or to Mr Tlou Ramaru at Tel: 012 399 9252.
Date:24 May 2019 - By: Andries van Zyl
Andries joined the Zoutpansberger and Limpopo Mirror in April 1993 as a darkroom assistant. Within a couple of months he moved over to the production side of the newspaper and eventually doubled as a reporter. In 1995 he left the newspaper group and travelled overseas for a couple of months. In 1996, Andries rejoined the Zoutpansberger as a reporter. In August 2002, he was appointed as News Editor of the Zoutpansberger, a position he holds until today.