Environment

NGO Condemns Death Threats Against its Staff

The World Wildlife Fund has condemned ‘death threats’ against two of its staff fighting oil exploration in a Democratic Republic of Congo nature park just weeks after the park's director was shot.
 
In a press statement, the organisation points out that, “Unidentified callers have threatened the personal safety of two employees working in the city of Goma."
 

SA, Moz, Fight Rhino Poaching

South Africa has signed an anti-poaching agreement with Mozambique, a major transit route for rhino horn trafficked to Asia.
 
So far this year a total 293 rhino have been killed in South Africa with nearly half of the attacks in the Kruger Park, despite the deployment of troops to protect them.
 
Environmental Affairs minister, Edna Molewa, says the agreement “entails us working together with Mozambique to eradicate rhino poaching… so that Mozambique is not used as a transit country.”
 

IPCC Urges ‘Faster Action’ on Global Warming

The United Nations (UN) says faster action is needed to keep global warming to agreed limits and delays until 2030 could force reliance on technologies to extract greenhouse gases from the air.
 
In its latest report, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), which drew on the work of more than 1 000 experts, says a shift from fossil fuels to low-carbon energy such as wind, solar or nuclear power was affordable and will shave only about 0.06 percent point a year off world economic growth.
 

Group Calls for Help in Anti-Whaling Fight

Environmental organisation, Greenpeace, has asked the South African government to put pressure on African port cities not to accept a cargo ship from Iceland carrying 2 000 tons of endangered fin whale meat.
 
The ship has skipped the port of Durban after a campaign to protest against whaling gained momentum.
 
More than 21 000 South Africans joined Greenpeace in the last three days in its request to port authorities to deny entrance and service to the ship, Alma.
 

Call to Exempt Hospitals From Pre-Paid Meters

Minister of Copperbelt - copper mining area of Central Africa which runs in Zambia - Mwenya Musenge, has appealed to Zambia Electricity Supply Corporation Limited (ZESCO) to consider exempting health institutions from its prepaid meters installation project.

Musenge believes that in as much as ZESCO is supplying power to the public, it needs to revisit the issue of pre-paid meters in health institutions.

He further states that government is committed to ensuring that the majority of the population gained access to electricity and energy country wide.

SA to Meet MDGs on Sustainable Sanitation

Human Settlements Minister, Connie September, is confident that South Africa will meet the United Nations' Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) on sustainable sanitation.

Speaking at the launch of the Bucket Toilet Eradication Programme in Grahamstown, September said though there are areas that are still using the bucket system, her department will be able to meet the MDGs’ 2015 target.

Meanwhile, Eastern Cape's Human Settlements MEC, Helens Sauls August, says the province has strengthened its systems to avoid what she calls a second generation of sanitation backlog.

IPCC Warns Against Climate Change

The United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) says that climate change is already affecting lives and will have catastrophic impacts if carbon emissions are not lowered now.
 
In its new report, the IPCC paints a world where human civilisation will struggle to survive unless carbon emissions are cut urgently, adding that the impacts if nothing happened will be ‘severe, pervasive and irreversible’.
 
"Nobody on this planet is going to be untouched by the impacts of climate change," explains Rajendra Pachauri, the head of the IPCC.
 

Air Pollution Blamed for Deaths

A new report released by the World Health Organisation (WHO) has found that air pollution is responsible for one in eight of all global deaths – double the previous estimate.

The report states that the seven million deaths annually are from a combination of indoor and outdoor air pollution.

In its research, WHO found strong links between indoor and outdoor air pollution and cardiovascular diseases - like strokes and ischaemic heart disease.

Global Temperatures Continue to Soar - UN

The United Nations says that 13 of the 14 warmest years on record have occurred since the turn of the new millennium.

In its annual report, the United Nations' World Meteorological Organisation says that 2013 continued what is a long-term trend of the world getting warmer.

Michel Jarraud, the organisation's secretary general, says in the report: "Many of the extreme events of 2013 were consistent with what we would expect as a result of human-induced climate change."

Gore Speaks on Drastic Climate Change

At a Climate Reality Leadership Corps training, former United States of America vice-president and Nobel Peace Prize winner, Al Gore, has given an overview of how humans are driving climate change.

In his presentation, Gore discussed the effect of humans driving climate change and how this is changing conditions around the world right now.

He stated that, the current global system was destroying the habitability of the planet by burning fossil fuels, and adds that it is wrong and needs to change.

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