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Protect communities affected by KZN floods: Mbalula

Minister of Transport, Fikile Mbalula, has emphasised the importance of protecting communities that were affected by the recent floods in KwaZulu-Natal from further devastation, through properly planned settlements, and affordable and safe housing. We must continue to build our resilience to the impacts of climate change, through early warning systems, stronger infrastructure, and disaster risk management systems, the Minister said on Thursday in Midrand. Addressing the Presidential Climate Commissions Just Transition Framework multistakeholder conference, he said it was imperative to build back from the catastrophic events in a climate resilient way. Our social and economic infrastructure must be made climate resilient in a systematic and forward-looking manner. We live in one of the most affected regions in the world, and frequently experience droughts, storms and floods associated with global warming. The recent devastating floods in KwaZulu-Natal put these climate impacts in sharp focus, causing catastrophic loss of life and widespread destruction. Hundreds of people lost their lives. Homes, roads, and bridges were washed away. Public buildings, shops and farms were flooded, Mbalula said. He said disasters like those in KwaZulu-Natal are a reminder that it is poorer communities women and young people, the unemployed, those living in informal settlements, that are most vulnerable to climate change. The science is clear that climate change is happening at an accelerated pace, with profound implications on all aspects of our lives on rainfall patterns, water resources, crop viability, food security and human health, amongst others. The science is also clear that we must keep global warming below 1.5 degrees Celsius, if we want to avoid the worst of climate impacts. To do so, we must reduce greenhouse gas emissions dramatically over the next three decades to reach net-zero emissions by the middle of the century, the Minister said. He said developed countries, who have contributed the lions share to historical emissions, bear the responsibility of reducing emissions first but noted that all natations need to play their part in efforts to mitigate against the impact of climate change If we dont, we will miss out on the opportunities of a greener, more inclusive, and more sustainable economy. In addition, we will face increasing economic risks, as the world shifts demand to low-emissions goods and services. The transition will require profound and systemic change across all sectors of our economy. We must decarbonise our electricity grid and modernise the electricity system. We must continue to bring more renewable energy capacity online as our cheapest available energy source, and as part of a long-term shift towards a renewables-based power system, the Minister said. South Africa needs to install roughly 3 to 4 gigawatts of renewable energy per annum over the next 30 years. At this pace, we can generate sufficient economies of scale for local manufacturers to produce the parts for wind and solar and utility scale batteries. This manufacturing can create real jobs not just intermittent jobs in the installation and construction, but decent permanent jobs linked to large scale manufacturing. We must invest in peaking power to provide the energy security that our country so desperately needs, Mbalula said. He said South Africa must continue to phase out coal, in a manner that is carefully structured and planned. Specifically, this means repurposing and repowering our existing coal plants, and creating new livelihoods for workers and communities most impacted in the change. We must equip our automotive industry for the new opportunities of a cleaner transport system, including electric vehicles. We must similarly ensure that our agriculture sector is resilient to the impacts of climate change, empowering the farmers and farm workers at the same time, the Minister said.

may 5 2022 9:55pm
SA's green transition to cost more than R1-trillion by 2030

SA's efforts to wean itself off coal and focus on renewables, battery storage, electric vehicles and setting up a green hydrogen economy would require more than R1-trillion by 2030, a top government official said this week.

may 5 2022 10:19am
business News : Mixed
electric car 'grants' proposed for South Africa

South Africa risks being left behind as the rest of the world moves to electric vehicles, but the introduction of grants and other incentives could improve adoption, says the Trade & Industrial Policy Strategies (TIPS) group.

mar 11 2022 6:54pm
NN News : Mixed
Godongwana urges SA to be conducive for investment

With South Africa being at risk of losing a potential multibillion rand investment by Ford, Finance Minister Enoch Godongwana has emphasised the important role that cities and provinces play in creating an enabling environment for investment. We need to get the basics right. This entails reducing regulatory constraints, providing effective services, as well as coordinating and sequencing economic interventions, Godongwana said on Wednesday. Addressing Parliament during the debate on the 2022 Fiscal Framework and Revenue Proposals, the Minister said the country could lose a potential multibillion rand investment by Ford for an electric vehicle plant. Ford has already invested R16 billion in the Tshwane Automotive Special Economic Zone, where it is producing its Ford Ranger model. This is the largest foreign direct investment project our country has seen in recent times, and has already created around 8 000 jobs. Ford intended to invest further in bringing its electric vehicle production to South Africa. This, however, has been put at risk because the City of Tshwane has been unable and perhaps unwilling to secure the electricity the new plant needs. The Tshwane example reminds us that a deficit of political will at municipal level makes it massively harder than it should be to create conditions for job-rich growth, the Godongwana said. Public sector wage bill As part of addressing the public sector wage bill, a Public Sector Labour Summit is scheduled to take place at the end of this month. The summit is an important opportunity for all stakeholders to engage honestly and transparently and chart a path towards a more sustainable public service and remuneration guidelines. The Minister said much has been made of the $750 million loan that government took from the World Bank. The World Bank loan has no conditionalities attached. It does not in any way threaten the sovereignty of our country. We considered all forms of concessional and non-concessional funding necessary to address the shortfall between our revenue and our expenditure. We then chose an affordable option available to us, the Minister said. In this years State of the Nation Address, the President announced the extension of the Social Relief of Distress grant to March 2023. The President further indicated that in this period, detailed technical work and engagements will take place to identify the best options to replace this grant. In this regard, work is underway to review the grants system, with a view to developing an optimal support mechanism for grants recipients. The review will also inform our approach to long-term social security for South Africa, the Minister said. This includes considerations regarding: social assistance; social insurance; active labour policies, and artisan training for learners exiting vocational training, where the intention is to engage not only the private sector, but also municipalities and State-owned enterprises to equip learners in Technical and Vocational Education and Training (TVET) colleges with the relevant industry experience to enable them to transition to gainful employment.

mar 10 2022 6:09pm
electric vs petrol vs diesel vehicles in South Africa: cost per kilometre

South Africa is behind the curve when it comes to electric vehicle adoption, however, as the shift to mainstream electric vehicle acceptance edges closer, more motorists are weighing up the pros and cons of electric versus petrol and diesel.

mar 3 2022 7:24pm
NN News : Mixed
COP26's $8.5bn pledge to SA sparks funding tussle

Eskom wants to expand the national grid to encourage more investment in renewable power, while the department of trade & industry is punting electric vehicles and green hydrogen, sources say

feb 21 2022 11:19am
business News : Mixed
South Africa's first open-road electric vehicle range test: Jaguar I-Pace vs BMW i3s vs MINI Cooper SE

A new benchmark evaluation has put three locally available electric vehicles (EVs) - the Jaguar I-Pace, BMW i3s and MINI Cooper SE - to the test in a simulated open-road range assessment to determine exactly how far an electric car is able to travel on a single charge in real-world South African conditions at an average of 120 kmh.

feb 16 2022 9:22pm
NN News : Mixed
DeLorean is being revived - this time as an electric vehicle

The newest entrant in the fight for EV market share is going back to the future with an all-electric DeLorean.

feb 16 2022 3:52pm
NN News : Mixed
Here's what the average used electric car looks like in South Africa - price and mileage

New data from AutoTrader shows what the average used electric vehicle looks like in South Africa, despite the segment being in its infancy in the country, with only a handful of models to date.

feb 14 2022 12:21pm
NN News : Mixed
Why South Africa is still not ready for electric cars: Toyota boss

Toyota is betting big on electric vehicles globally, but it will be a while before they become commonplace in South Africa, says president of Toyota South Motors Andrew Kirby.

feb 11 2022 11:51am
NN News : Mixed