Environment

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In 100 years’ time, maybe our food won’t be grown in soil

By The Conversation on 06 December 2018

It takes a lot to make a room of soil scientists gasp. Last month, I presented at the National Soils Conference in Canberra, and asked 400 colleagues a simple question: do you think soil will play as significant a role in food production in 100 years as it does today?

Crisis proofing South Africa’s water security

By The Conversation on 13 November 2018

South Africa is often referred to as the 30th driest country in the world, a claim that’s based on its average annual rainfall of 500mm compared to the world average of 860mm. National rainfall averages have a purpose...

Yes, eating meat affects the environment, but cows are not killing the climate

By The Conversation on 25 October 2018

Removing animals from agriculture would lower national greenhouse gas emissions to a small degree, but it would also make it harder to meet nutritional requirements. Many critics of animal agriculture are quick to point out that if farmers raised only plants, they could produce m

How changing the world’s food systems can help to protect the planet

By The Conversation on 21 September 2018

Going into debt with nature is a dangerous thing. When our stocks of water, land and clean air are spent – we don’t have a second planet to borrow from. But that’s exactly the way that Earth is heading.

African countries aren’t doing enough to prepare for rising sea levels

By The Conversation on 19 September 2018

Sea levels are rising around the world. In the last quarter century, on the north-eastern African coastline, sea levels have risen by as much as 12cm. The future looks even more worrying.

Climate change, water and the spread of diseases: connecting the dots differently

By The Conversation on 19 September 2018

Half a century ago concerns about climate change, environment vulnerability, population density and the sustainability of earth systems reached a broad audience. This was clear from books like the Silent Spring published in 1962, and The Limits to Growth published 10 years later.

Does South Africa have a microplastics problem? Our research says yes

By The Conversation on 18 September 2018

The dangers of plastics, and more specifically microplastics, is increasingly grabbing the world’s attention. A growing body of research shows that plastics and microplastics in the marine environment are having a devastating effect on life in the sea.

Plastic Is Killing our Oceans – the Issues, Facts, and Possible Solutions

By Wendy Lipscomb on 28 June 2018

Approximately 40% of the world’s 7.6 billion people live within 62 miles (100km) of an ocean coast. For the other 60%, some of whom may never have even seen an ocean, the seas still play a vital role in their lives. Most importantly, the ocean is vital to the food chain.

Companies Must Push Harder on Achieving Sustainability Goals

By EHS Today on 18 April 2018

While 69% of companies ask suppliers to effectively manage their environmental impacts, only 34% actually provide tools and resources to incentivize action.

Down the drain – how water leakage affects us and what we can do about it

By Environmental Management Magazine on 28 March 2018

37% of water in our urban piped water systems leaks out or is used illegally”. That’s more than a third of our country’s water, going down the drain. With the water crisis in the Cape, looming water concerns across the world, and a growing population, this figure remains far too

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