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The Sustainable Water Resource Handbook South Africa Volume 9 The essential guide to resource efficency in South Africa


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Water Resource Handbook

South Africa Volume 9

The Essential Guide EDITOR


Garth Barnes

David Itzkin

assistant editor

project Manager

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Althea Grundling, Dr Ferai Tererai, Piet-Louis Grundling, Raina Hattingh, Stephen Mallory, Lipalesa Sissia Matela, Jules Newton, Garth Barnes, Gwen Gosney, Linton Rensburg, Mahlodi Tau, Grant Trebble

Glenda Kulp, Zaida Yon, Tanya Duthie, Louna Rae, Farai Maunga, Louna Rae


peer reviewers Dr Richard Meissner, Garth Barnes, Japie Buckle, Dr PietLouis Grundlingh, Marc de Fontaine



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Climate change and its potential impacts present a major challenge to the country’s development goals as recognized in the National Development Plan 2030. In response to this, South Africa developed a National Climate Change Response Policy (gazetted as a White Paper in 2011), and a National Climate Change Adaptation Strategy. The National Climate Change Response White Paper (2011) emphasises the importance of Ecosystem-based Adaptation (EbA) as part of an overall adaptation strategy. Ecosystem-based

Garth Barnes Editor

Adaptation (EbA) represents a coherent approach for adaptation to climate change that makes use of the role that well-functioning ecosystems play in achieving positive societal and development outcomes. Many of these ecosystems provide important services to people and are so called “ecological infrastructure”, which is particularly important for the provision of fresh water, climate regulation, soil formation and fire management. This year’s handbook explores these concepts in depth as we understand eco-system based adaptation from different perspectives.


Contributors Althea Grundling

Dr Althea Theresa Grundling is a Senior Researcher at the Agricultural Research Council - Institute for Soil, Climate and Water (ARC-ISCW) in Pretoria, South Africa. She has worked at the ARC-ISCW for almost 15 years, focussing mainly on wetland research. She obtained her Master of Science degree from the Department of Botany, University of Pretoria, in 2004, where she evaluated remote sensing sensors for monitoring rehabilitated wetlands. In 2014 Dr Grundling obtained her Doctor of Philosophy degree in Geography from the Faculty of Environmental Management at the University of Waterloo, Ontario, Canada.

Dr. Farai Tererai

Farai Tererai is a Deputy Director for Planning, Research, Monitoring and Evaluation in Wetlands Programmes; Chief Directorate: Natural Resources Management; Branch: Environmental Programmes; in Department of Environmental Affairs. He holds a BSc. Hons. Geography (University of Zimbabwe - UZ); MSc. Environmental Policy and Planning (UZ); and a PhD in Botany (Stellenbosch University). He was a postdoctoral research fellow at University of Cape Town focusing natural resources limitations to development in the SADC region building.

Piet-Louis Grundling

Piet-Louis Grundling is currently the national implementation manager for the Wetland Programmes, National Resource Management, Department of Environment, South Africa. He was appointed in 2002 the first National Coordinator of the Working for Wetlands Programme in South Africa. In 2006 he resigned from the Working for Wetlands Programme, SANBI to pursue a PhD in wetland hydrology after been offered a scholarship at the University of Waterloo, Canada. On his return in 2010 he pursue a career as a wetland specialist.

Raina Hattingh

Raina Hattingh has a MSc Environmental Management from the University of Pretoria, South Africa.   As an environmental consultant within the mining and heavy industry field, she has spent her career developing a focus on strategic mine closure planning. Raina has worked with international clients across commodities, and has an affinity for the rehabilitation-related landscape challenges posed by coal mining. As most of her experience has been gained within the borders of Africa, these challenges span across the developing world’s environmental and social disciplines.

Stephen Mallory

Mr Mallory is currently a Director of IWR Water Resources, a company which specialises in water resources planning and modelling. He has 34 years experience in the water engineering field, most of which is in the field of water resources planning and modelling. One of Mr Malllory’s key competencies and areas of interest is the development of operating rules for dams and bulk water supply systems and how this relates to the implementation of the Ecological Reserve. Mr Mallory has published many papers relating to water resources management, several of which have been presented at international conferences.

Lipalesa Sissie Matela

Lipalesa Sissie Matela is a Soil Scientist and an accredited Environmental Scientist with over thirty years of experience working in integrated natural resource management mostly in the rural areas of Lesotho and South Africa. She has a BSc Environmental Science from the National University of Lesotho and an MSc in Agronomy and Soil Science from the University of Hawaii in the USA, specializing in morphology, genesis and classification of soils.



Jules Newton

Jules Newton is at heart a social entrepreneur. After founding and building Avocado Vision for 22 years, she has now taken on the role as Programme Director for the Green Business Value Chain. She brings together her decades of experience in small business and supplier development, innovative community education solutions, and a passion for connecting informal and formal economies to the new role. The Green Business Value Chain seeks to catalyse South African society towards integrated approaches to building green rural and urban economies.

Garth Barnes

Coupled with 21 years’ experience in the advertising, marketing and environmental sectors, Garth also holds qualifications in marketing management, environmental management and a Master’s degree in Environmental Education exploring the relationship between water stewardship, values and social learning. He is now a Deputy Director in the Department of Environmental Affairs working with advocacy for Natural Resources Management, especially focused on helping to strengthen the Working for Water programme through the catalytic work of the Green Business Value Chain.

Linton Rensburg

Head of the Communications Department & National Spokesperson for Working on Fire South Africa. During this period the programme has continued to receive excellent national media coverage. Linton is a seasoned media and communication specialist who spent his first 10 years at Government Communications (GCIS) and there after he was a consultant to numerous government and private sector institutions for more than 10 years. Through his leadership and vision the Working on Fire programme continuous to receive positive media reviews.

Mahlodi Tau

Mahlodi Tau is the Director at the South African National Biodiversity Institute (SANBI) responsible for the Ecological Infrastructure Directorate. His key responsibilities is to lead SANBI’s programme of work on mainstreaming biodiversity, ecological infrastructure and ecosystembased adaptation approaches in a range of strategic sectors such as water, environment and agricultural sector. Mahlodi has an MSc in Grassland Science from the University of KwaZuluNatal, South Africa.

Grant Trebble

Grant Trebble formed LEAD Associates in 2007 to achieve scale and sustainability off the back of successful projects in the shortest possible timeframe. A key focus going forward will be the provision of ecosystem restoration materials, utilising processed invasive biomass, to achieve Land Degradation Neutrality targets while attending to water security and job creation mandates.








RIVER AND ENVIRONMENTAL MANAGEMENT COOPERATION (REMCO) The 5th International REMCO Conference will be hosted by ARA Sul (Mozambique) in partnership with the Inkomati-Usuthu Catchment Management Agency (South Africa), and Komati River Basin Authority (Eswatini. The objectives of the conference are to create an effective platform for the River Basin Institutions to exchange knowledge about operational methods and practices, to foster co-learning and to enhance cooperation between the River Basin Institutions, other water management institutions and stakeholders through informed and consensus driven decisions and recommendations. The conference will take place as follows: Date: 12-15 May 2019 Venue: Matola Hotel (Mozambique)

Registration fee is R1000.00 including all meals and conference pack. Participants are expected to arrange their own transport and accommodation.


Ms Gugu Motha at mothag@iucma.co.za or 013 753 9018 and For more information: Ms Sylvia Machimana at sylviam@iucma.co.za – General information Dr Tendai Sawunyama at sawunyamat@iucma.co.za – Conference programme




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contents 1.

Wetland ecological infrastructure: making a case for restoration in the face of climate change and rising costs


Dr Piet-Louis Grundling, Dr Anthea Grundling, Dr Ferai Terarai


Using basic principles of land rehabiliation to enhance opportunities for ecosystem-based adaptation


Raina Hattingh, Gwen Gosney


Ecological infrastructure and climate change


The vital role of soil in ecological infrastructure and ecosystem-based adaptation (EbA)


Stephen Mallory


Lipalesa Sissie Matela


A triumphal story of resilience in the face of a changing climate


Jules Newton, Garth Barnes


Working on Fire - 15 years of service to South Africa


Investing in ecological infrastructure for water security and climate resilence

Linton Rensburg

56 60

Mahlodi Tau


The disconnected choice


Grant Trebble

Case Studies


Technological Reviews



Ecosystem-based Adaptation: Wetlands Wetland ecological infrastructure: making a case for restoration in the face of climate change and rising costs By Dr Piet-Louis Grundling Dr Althea Grundling Dr Farai Tererai

14 26


Globally it is acknowledged that climate change has a severe impact on, not only coastal communities, but also semi-arid regions such as southern Africa (UNCCD, 2017). The general effects of climate change are shifting rainfall patterns, including more frequent and intense floods and droughts, and increasing surface temperatures (i.e. global warming) (UNCCD, 2017; Wetlands International, 2017). These effects create wetter conditions in some places, but dryer in others. Therefore, not only will coastal areas be at risk of climate change effects, but also inland areas. In commenting on the link between Hurricane Harvey and climate change, Roberts (2017) said, “Climate change did not “cause” Harvey, but it’s a huge part of the story. Instead, warming has increased the severity of storms”. The Department of Environmental Affairs’ National Climate Change Response Strategy (2004) lists the following effects of climate in South Africa: • Sub-continental warming is predicted to be greatest in the northern regions. • Temperature increases in the range of between 1°C and 3°C can be expected by the mid-21st century, with the highest rises in the most arid areas. • A broad reduction of rainfall in the range of 5% to 10% can be expected in the summer rainfall region. • Reduction in rainfall will be accompanied by an increasing incidence of both droughts and floods, with prolonged dry spells being followed by intense storms. • A marginal increase in early winter rainfall is predicted for the winter rainfall region. • Significant effects on various sectors of

CHAPTER 1 society (including health) and the economy (increase in poverty and decrease in food security) will occur. Wetlands are globally regarded as one of the most important life support systems, yet they are the most threatened ecosystem type (UNCCD (2017). In South Africa, only 11% of wetlands ecosystem types (Figure 1) are protected (Nel et al., 2012). The 2011 National Biodiversity Assessment reports that 68% of South African wetlands are under threat, of which 48% are critically endangered, 12% are endangered and 5% are vulnerable (Nel et al., 2012). Compared to wetlands in many parts of the world, South African wetlands are inherently vulnerable to erosion (Figure 2) due to recent major geological uplifts leading to high elevation relative to sea level (Ellery et al. 2009). This, coupled with the fact that wetlands are heavily dependent on activities and hydrological processes in their catchments, lead to significant impacts if any of these parameters change. Climate

induced changes such as prolonged dry spells, increase in frequency and intensity of extreme weather events such as droughts and floods, and increase in rainfall intensity (intense storms) all occurring in degraded catchments could further degrade wetlands. This results in intense storm flows that have potential to cause serious erosion in wetlands and subsequent desiccation due to channelling. High clastic sediment loads into wetlands alter fluvial processes, in particular wetlands’ sediment balance, thus further disrupting wetland function. It is, for example, expected that peatlands in the western and other drier groundwaterdependant regions will be adversely effected by climate change. Nonetheless, these systems are crucial for human livelihood and ecological benefits (Figure 3). The interaction of climate, geology, geomorphology, hydrology, biogeochemical, and biological processes in these dynamic systems produce many benefits, summarised in the table below.

Table 1: Benefits of wetlands (Source: Kotze et al., 2005)

Wetland benefits (goods and services)

Indirect benefits

Direct benefits

Hydrological benefits

Flood attenuation Streamflow augmentation Sediment trapping Phosphate assimilation Nitrate assimilation Toxicant assimilation Erosion control

Biodiversity conservation – integrity & irreplaceability Carbon storage Water supply Provision of harvestable resources Socio-cultural significance Tourism and recreation Education and research


This necessitates their protection, promotion of their wise-use, and rehabilitation of those that are degrading, but have high restoration potential. However, rehabilitation is inherently costly (Kotze et al., 2018), and on average over the last 14 years, it cost R740 000 to rehabilitate one wetland (DEA, unpublished data). Perhaps a better perspective of cost of rehabilitation is “cost per ha equivalence rehabilitated� which was estimated at R425 000 for 13 hydrogeomorphic units rehabilitated by Working for Wetlands, a national government wetlands conservation programme, across all provinces in South Africa (Kotze et al., 2018). These costs are really limiting in terms of rehabilitation footprint given that 48% of known wetlands in South Africa are critically endangered (Nel et al., 2012). Pitted against other competing socio-economic priorities in South Africa’s development blueprint, the National Development Plan (NPC, 2011), such as health, education, rural development, employment creation, food, water and energy security, investments in the rehabilitation of wetlands ecological infrastructure face stiff competition. Using peatlands (a type of wetland) and the Working for Wetlands as case studies, this chapter aims to make a case for building resilience in wetlands ecological infrastructure in the face of climate change and rising costs of rehabilitation. The value of wetland ecological infrastructure: Peatlands as a case study Determining the value of ecological infrastructure is complex (SANBI, 2014), and yet one of the most important starting points in making a case for wetlands ecological infrastructure restoration. While initially the value is a snapshot (a slice


in time), the true worth of ecological infrastructure is in the recurrence of that value in subsequent years. However, depending on how the resource is cared for or maintained, which may be in the form of protection, promotion of wise-use and rehabilitation, the recurrence value may remain the same, increase or decrease in the future. In an effort to quantify the value of South African wetlands, Grundling et al. (2017) investigated the potential of South African peatlands as a carbon sequestration mitigation mechanism. An ecosystem services approach was applied to demonstrate the socio-economic value of peatlands in South Africa. This study did not aim to put a total value on peatlands, but rather to demonstrate a range of possible peatland values from several models and case studies. The ecosystem services identified as the most important peatland services were carbon sequestration, water purification, knowledge and education, peat as a commodity, hydrological regulation, tourism, recreation and spirituality (Grundling et al., 2017). The carbon sequestration of peatlands was evaluated by estimating the annual carbon accumulation rates. The storage ability was evaluated by estimating the current levels of carbon stocks in peatlands. Both estimations were done by acquiring specific physical data pertaining to various peatlands across the country. Where there were data gaps, peatland experts were consulted and ranges were determined. In this way, data required was inferred across regions to ultimately demonstrate the value of peatlands across South Africa. In terms of their carbon storage capability, the stock was estimated to range between

CHAPTER 1 4.2 million tonnes and 431.5 million tonnes (Grundling et al., 2017). Estimates of the accumulation rates ranged between approximately 2 500 and 45 000 tonnes of carbon per year (Grundling et al., 2017). Although compared to global figures the climate regulation capability is not remarkable, South African peatlands do play a substantial role in storing and sequestering atmospheric carbon. The value of carbon stocks present in peatlands displayed a proxy worth an average of R13 billion, possibly being worth as much as R191.8 billion on the higher end. The annual sequestration value of peatlands was estimated to be between approximately R5.6 million with a possible maximum of R19.8 million a year (Grundling et al., 2017). Based on these results, the scope of payments for ecosystem service schemes based on the carbon accumulation services alone is relatively low compared to the growing biomass carbon storage schemes such as the Spekboom Project in the Eastern Cape (Curran et al., 2012). However, the ecological infrastructure value of peatlands increases by more than an order of magnitude when the additional ecosystem services are added: The water quality improvement (water purification and waste assimilation) service provided by peatlands was demonstrated to have a very high value. An estimate based on the Klip River Peatland south of the Witwatersrand indicates that the water purification value from an ecological infrastructure perspective could be as much as R179 billion (Grundling et al., 2017). This does not include any other South African peatlands. Thus, the waste assimilation service value will almost certainly be larger than R179 billion, making this service potentially more valuable

than the carbon sequestration service for peatlands (Grundling et al., 2017). Compared to global abundance, peatlands are an extremely scarce ecosystem type in South Africa (Figure 4) covering < 10% of the total wetland area (Grundling et al., 2017). The regionally distinctive characteristics and local floral diversity of South African peatlands positively influence the substitutability value of these systems. This value is further enhanced by the knowledge service potential present in peat, which is largely unequalled by any other terrestrial source of paleoenvironmental data (Bacon et al., 2017, Grundling et al., 2017). Substitutability in economics is the degree to which one good or service is substitutable for another good or service (TEEB, 2013). In the case of very scarce resources, substitutability is limited; in extreme cases, this would negate the determination of an economic value. A landmark case was the St Lucia heavy minerals environmental impact assessment completed in 1996, which determined that Lake St Lucia was so unique that miningrelated risks could not be allowed (Kruger et al., 1997). The same case cannot be made for all peatlands, as there are many across the country; however, on a case-bycase basis, there may be peatland systems that are so unique that a case for a zero degree of substitutability could be made. The irreplaceability value should be handled with caution when valuing peatlands economically, but this value should not be ignored when making management decisions as the value is highly significant. Considerable extraction (Figure 5) of some of South Africaâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s peatlands has been documented (Grundling et al., 1998;


Grobler, 2009; Grundling, 2014); however, at the time of the study, insufficient data did not allow for the value provided by this service to be demonstrated. The commodity price of peat stocks (i.e. the value of peat as an economic good for use as a compost or similar use) accumulated in South African peatlands was estimated as being as much as R6 billion and for peat accumulation R0.6 million per year (Grundling et al., 2017). These values are relatively low when compared to the cumulative economic values indicated by other services. This finding is highly significant as it indicates that the gain of revenue through peat harvesting is miniscule when compared to the loss of revenue due to replacing services lost through peatland degradation. The quantification and valuation of the hydrological regulation and cultural services including tourism, recreation and spiritualism were not possible due to limited data. This is not to say that the services do not exist. The ability for peat to provide additional hydrological regulation and cultural services needs further quantitative investigations to empirically include or exclude them as servicesenhanced by the presence of peat. This study by Grundling et al. (2017) demonstrated the value of services provided by South Africa’s peatlands. Peatlands are more valuable due to the presence of peat stocks within them. Based on the services evaluated and the available data, the value of the cumulative services provided by South African peatlands was estimated to be as high as R174 billion, expressed as an ecological infrastructure value. This means that for every R1 of carbon storage value, approximately another R12 can be added for other ecosystem services. This value equates to approximately R5.7 million per


hectare. This is a substantial value that must be considered when making decisions regarding wetlands, and in particular peatland management in South Africa in order to conserve and sustain the peat and peat-forming conditions within them. South Africa’s wetlands are already at risk of degradation through various unsustainable land-use practices. These include alterations of water courses and water tables, infrastructure encroachment, urban and industrial effluent, peat extraction (mining), climate change and catchment transformation. These activities degrade wetlands and peatlands resulting in the exposure of the subsurface peat, and disruption of peatforming conditions. South African peatlands Less than 10% of the extent of South Africa’s wetlands (an equivalence of about 400 km²), is known to be peatland (Grundling et al., 2017). Globally, 50% of the world’s wetlands are peatland. According to South Africa’s National Peatland Database, 50% of South Africa’s peatlands are located in the Natal Coastal Plain Peat Ecoregion in the KwaZulu-Natal Province. Some peatlands also occur in the more arid regions of South Africa, such as the karst regions of the North West Province (Highveld Peat Ecoregion) and the Southern Coastal Belt Peat Ecoregion on the West Coast. Although peatlands are not common in South Africa, a number of these systems are unique, such as the endemic palmiet systems in the Cape Fold Mountains, and the world’s oldest known peatland, the Mfabeni Mire (which is 45 000 years old and still accumulating peat) located in the iSimangaliso Wetland Park Contrary to the historic public perception in South Africa that wetlands are “wastelands”, the high economic value

CHAPTER 1 demonstrated for peatlands highlights their importance on the socio-economic landscape. In addition, there is also a major intrinsic value attached to the irreplaceability of these features that cannot be ignored. The loss or degradation of wetlands would reduce natural benefits of ecological infrastructure significantly. This investigation has highlighted the need for protection, sustainable use and maintenance of these natural features. It is therefore imperative that we build the resilience wetlands ecological infrastructure through interventions such as erosion control, soil conservation, storm water management, promotion of wise-use and protection. The Working for Wetlands Programme Working for Wetlands from 20042018 – an example of a response to environmental change – 1 400 Wetlands (about 68 000 ha) under rehabilitation – Target 61 900 wetlands by 2030. Spent R1 billion (approx. US$ 100 million) – Average of US$ 72 500 spend per wetland – 32 000 jobs created, 256 000 person days of skills development Recognizing the importance of wetlands in a semi-arid land such as South Africa, the state has embarked on a wetland restoration programme. Through the Working for Wetlands programme, mandated with protection, promotion of wise-use and rehabilitation of wetlands, 1400 wetlands were rehabilitated in the past 17 years at a cost of R1billion. Fifty two of these wetlands are peatlands, and considering they only constitute a small proportion of total wetland area in South Africa, this indicates government’s

commitment to contribute to climate change mitigation. Working for Wetlands is often faced with the challenge of prioritising catchments and wetland systems due to financial resource constraints. The programme’s current planning system prioritises catchments based on their potential for high biodiversity and functional value return, as well as potential for partnerships. Climate change however, confounds this system because of its differential spatial effects on different parts of the country (Figure 6). Areas that are predicted to experience increasedand high intensity rainfall events will have different restoration needs compared to areas that are predicted to experience less rain. These differences are defined by wetland type, interventions required and related costs. Recognising that wetlands are components of broader landscapes subject to anthropogenic land use and climate change, the programme has endeavoured to enlarge its wetland conservation footprint. The programme achieves this by building community and institutional capacity, providing extension services to all spheres of government, and supporting compliance initiatives. This reduces the cumulative effects of poor protection and compliance, climate change and increasing demand for water (surface and ground) from wetlands. Because of the complexity of wetland functioning and management, the programme runs a thorough planning protocol to ensure systematic, effective and cost efficient rehabilitation of wetlands (Figure 6). The objective of wetland rehabilitation in a changing environment should therefore not aim fixing systems to a static state, but rather to attain a functional and resilient system that can respond to changes in climate and catchments.


Conclusion Wetlands, in the southern African region comprise a small component of the landscape, but constitute important ecological infrastructure providing disproportionately important goods and services for ecological and human livelihood. They are however threatened by multiple anthropogenic drivers of change, among which is climate change, a widely acknowledged human induced phenomenon in the Anthropocene era (Roberts, 2017). The consequent degradation of wetlands results in significant attrition of the value of wetlands, thus necessitating conservation interventions that come at high cost among other competing national priorities. This article demonstrates that in this context, for wetlands to receive restoration priority, their full value need to be assessed based on the cocktail of ecosystem services that they provide, including irreplaceability value. This approach has resulted in South Africa embarking on a national wetlands restoration programme - Working for Wetlands. Resources for this programme are still limited, but we believe that if we continue to assess the ecological outcomes of the current restoration drive, it is possible to unlock additional funding from, particularly the private sector, over and above the current Expanded Public Works Programme funding which, while providing the needed restoration impetus, has its limitations. References

Bacon, K.L., Baird, A.J., Blundell, A., Bourgault, M-A., Chapman, P.J., Dargie, G., Dooling, G.P., Gee, C., Holden, J., Kelly, T., McKendrick-Smith, K.A., Morris, P.J., Noble, A., Palmer, S.M., Quillet, A., Swindles, G.T., Watson, E.J. & Young, D.M. (2017): Questioning ten common assumptions about peatlands. Mires and Peat, 19(12), 1-23. (Online: http://www.miresandpeat. net/pages/volumes/map19/map1912.php); 10.19189/MaP.2016.OMB.253.


Curran P, Smedley D, Thompson P and Knight AT (2012). Mapping Restoration Opportunity for Collaborating with Land Managers in a Carbon Credit-Funded Restoration Program in the Makana Municipality, Eastern Cape, South Africa. Restoration Ecology Vol. 20, No. 1, pp. 56â&#x20AC;&#x201C;64. Department of Environmental Affairs (DEA) (2004). National Climate Change Response Strategy. Department of Environmental Affairs. Pretoria, South Africa Department of Environmental Affairs (DEA). (2018) Unlocking barriers and opportunities for land-use based climate change mitigation activities in South Africa. Department of Environmental Affairs. Pretoria, South Africa Department of Environmental Affairs (DEA) (Unpublished data). Working for Wetlands, Natural Resources Management Programmes. Department of Environmental Affairs. Pretoria, South Africa. Ellery WN, Grenfell M, Kotze DC, McCarthy TS, Tooth S, Grundling P-L, Beckedahl H, le Maitre D Ramsay L (2009). WET-Origins: Controls on the distribution and dynamics of wetlands in South Africa. WRC Report No. TT 334/09. Water Research Commission, Pretoria, South Africa Grobler LER, (2009). A Phytosociological Study of Peat Swamp Forest in the Kosi Bay Lake System, Maputaland, South Africa. MSc Thesis. University of Pretoria. Grundling AT, (2004). Evaluation of remote sensing sensors for monitoring of rehabilitated wetlands. MSc thesis. University of Pretoria. Grundling P, Mazus H, and Baartman L, (1998). Peat Resources in Northern KwaZulu-Natal Wetlands: Maputaland. Department of Environmental Affairs and Tourism Report no. A25/13/2/7. 102. Grundling P-L, Grundling AT, Pretorius L, Mulders J and Mitchell S. (2017). South African Peatlands: Ecohydrological characteristics and socio-economic value. WRC Report No. 2346/1/17, Water Research Commission, Pretoria, South Africa. Kotze CD, Tererai F, Grundling P (2018). Assessing, with limited resources, the ecological outcomes of wetland restoration: a South African case. Restoration Ecology (in press). https://doi.org/10.1111/rec.12891. Kotze DC, Marneweck GC, Batchelor AL, Lindley DS, and Collins NB (2009). WET-EcoServices: A Technique

CHAPTER 1 for Rapidly Assessing Ecosystem Services Supplied by Wetlands. WRC Report No. TT 339/09, Water Research Commission, Pretoria, South Africa. Kruger FJ, Van Wilgen BW, Weaver AV and Greyling T (1997). Sustainable development and the environment: lessons from the St Lucia environmental impact assessment. South African Journal of Science, vol. 93(1), pp 23-33. National Planning Commission (NPC (2011). National Development Plan. Report no RP270/2011 Nel JL, Driver A and Swartz ER (2012). South African National Biodiversity Assessment 2011: Technical Report. Volume 2: Freshwater Component. CSIR Report Number CSIR/NRE/ECO/IR/2012/0022/A, Council for Scientific and Industrial Research: Stellenbosch, South Africa.

Figure 1: The Nylsvlei Floodplain â&#x20AC;&#x201C; a Ramsar Site, important in its flood attenuation function and biodiversity. Photo by P. Grundling

Roberts D (2017). Hurricane Harvey continues to rock the southern US, where at least nine people have died after unprecedented flooding. CARBON BRIEF. https://www.carbonbrief.org/mediareactionhurricane-harvey-climate-change. Accessed 6 September 2017. South African National Biodiversity Institute (SANBI). (2014) A Framework for Investing in Ecological Infrastructure in South Africa. South African National Biodiversity Institute, Pretoria. The Economics of Ecosystems and Biodiversity (TEEB). (2013) The Economics of Ecosystems and Biodiversity for Water and Wetlands. IEEP, London and Brussels; Ramsar Secretariat, Gland.

Figure 2: Erosion poses a serious threat to southern African wetlands. Erosion is a natural process but is exacerbated by catchment degradation evident in this tributary wetland of the Molopo. Photo by P. Grundling

United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification (UNCCD). (2017) Global Land Outlook. Secretariat of the United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification. Germany. Wetlands International (2017). Water Shocks. Wetlands and Human Migration in the Sahel. Madgwick, F.J. and Pearce, F. (editors). Wetlands International Report.

Figure 3: Habitat value of wetlands as demonstrated by the fish in the Eye of Kuruman, a Karst spring. Not only is it crucial in providing a water to the local community but also to the wetland downstream. Photo by F. Tererai


Figure 4: The Waterval Mire in Kgaswane Nature Reserve, Rustenburg. A peatland with 5m of peat that are an important for carbon storage and hydrological functioning (e.g. water storage and baseflow maintenance) Photo by P. Grundling

Figure 5: Peat extraction occurred extensively in the Karst peatlands of Gauteng and North West Provinces. The last operation was stopped by DEA in 2011 at the Gerhard Minnebron Peatland (above). Photo by P. Grundling


Head Office: Blue Gum Creek Estate 49 Golden Dr, Morehill Ext 8 Benoni, South Africa, 1459 Office: +27 862 1057 | Fax: +27 866 198677 Eastern Cape Branch: Unit 17, 14 Penkop Street, Woodbrook, East London, 5201 KwaZulu Natal Branch: Maqadini Area, P711, Ward 8, Kwa-Maphumulo, 4470

Figure 6: Necessity is the mother of invention in the face of a changing climate and rising costs. Wetlands provides refugia not only to indigenous fauna in drier landscapes but even to livestock: Goat browsing on a riparian Rhus (top left) and livestock drinking at a weir constructed to arrest erosion and rewet the wetland (top right). Rehabilitated wetlands acts as resilient lifesavers in a changing climate (bottom). Top photos by F. Tererai

Figure X (bonus photo): cattle drinking a water in the rehabilitated gully which was previously draining the wetland.


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Using basic principles of land rehabilitation to enhance opportunities for ecosystem-based adaptation By Raina Hattingh

Land Rehabilitation & Mine Closure Consultant; Land Rehabilitation Society of Southern Africa

Gwen Gosney

Environmental Manager: EMS & Quality, Trans-Caledon Tunnel Authority; Land Rehabilitation Society of Southern Africa


The objective of land rehabilitation is to reinstate ecological processes and functions within a disturbed landscape that are resilient, adaptable to change, and deliver important ecosystem services (Crossman et al, 2017). This is aligned to the principle of ecosystembased adaptation (EbA), which aims to use biodiversity and ecosystem services to counteract the impacts of climate change on human livelihoods. However, ecosystems can only provide a certain suite of ecosystem services and their ability to do so is diminished as they become degraded and fragmented (SANBI, 2015). It is thus important that rehabilitation of degraded areas should focus on re-establishing the core underpinning components of ecosystem processes and functions â&#x20AC;&#x201C; soil, vegetation, and water. This will help reduce vulnerability of re-created landscapes to ecological perturbations, such as climate change, whilst improving the range and quality of ecosystem goods and services (EGSs) available from the land. Importantly, it could also offer possible socio-economic benefits for communities dependent of these services for ongoing, functional land uses. This following considers how key land rehabilitation principles can be applied to degraded areas to enhance and support local biodiversity and ecosystem services to respond to the impacts of climate change. An integrated landscape approach to land rehabilitation Landscape form and function Land rehabilitation requires an integrated socio-ecological ecosystem approach that considers both the rehabilitated landscapeâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s form and functional needs. Underpinning


CHAPTER 2 these needs are fundamental ecosystem landscape components that form the basis of land rehabilitation principles (Figure 1). These components are - underlying landform that defines the landâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s robustness to natural fluvial processes, which drive water movement and associated soil erosivity; supporting, functional land capabilities defined by the quality of available soil, vegetation and water resources; and the overarching land use/s to be applied to the landscape. These components are intrinsically influenced by changing, often unpredictable, climatic events which can either enhance functionality of the rehabilitated land or exacerbate the rehabilitation design and implementation flaws.

Using land rehabilitation principles to create adaptable landscapes Land use as a land rehabilitation planning driver Land use has become a crucial indicator for regional ecological and economic changes. Resulting in fragmentation of natural ecosystem processes and functions, it has also been one of the important determinant factors of land vulnerability (Zhang et al, 2010). Land use change is considered a leading driver of biodiversity loss in terrestrial ecosystems and is expected to remain so in the future (Millennium Ecosystem Assessment, 2005). Although synergies between different land uses are possible, due to land use functionality

Figure 1: Fundamental ecosystem landscape components underpinning key land rehabilitation principles â&#x20AC;&#x201C; landform, land capability, land use, within changing climates


constraints, the same tract of land cannot simultaneously maximise food production, sequester carbon in long-standing forests, and preserve biodiversity (Rudel & Meyfroidt, 2014). Hence, to mitigate land use change impacts and/or adapt to these changes, it is critical that regional land use planning drivers are used to guide setting overarching land rehabilitation objectives. These land use drivers could include, or be a combination of, optimising water conservation and preservation (water management), improving land productivity (food security), enhancing functional ecological systems (biodiversity conservation), optimising energy utilisation (renewable energy), or supporting rural and urban development (township development). Disturbed land is often surrounded by - or interspersed with other land that faces similar challenges, impacts and residual landscape risks. With land use as a rehabilitation planning driver, there is a greater ability to reinstate significantly large functional areas, or ‘ecosystem corridors’, across disturbed site boundaries. Increased connectivity and permeability in productive landscapes make it easier for floral and faunal species to migrate, enabling them to follow shifting climatic niches. Furthermore, land use planning provides an opportunity for integrated management of sensitive socio-ecological communities through the incorporation of green infrastructure. Green infrastructure, synonymous with nature-based solutions, is the “interconnected network of natural and semi-natural areas, features and green spaces in rural and urban, terrestrial, freshwater, coastal and marine ecosystems, which conserve natural ecosystem


values, contribute to biodiversity conservation, and benefit humans through provision of ecosystem services” (Crossman, et al. 2017). This integration could result not only in mitigation of ecological habitat fragmentation, but also reinstatement of larger expanses of productive agricultural/ farming land, all being more adaptable to shifting climatic conditions, offering resilience. Using landform to mitigate biophysical impacts of extreme weather events The natural environment reached its current landform (or topography) through millions of years of geomorphic processes driven primarily by water- and wind-induced erosion. A rehabilitated site will inevitably be exposed to similar geomorphic processes. The post-rehabilitated surface landform needs to mimic the optimal distribution of rainfall/wind energy on the site to sustain the long-term stability of the rehabilitated landscape. Surface landform design and profiling therefore needs to consider a site’s specific distribution of energy (wind and water erosion) to maximise its sustainability. Of critical importance to landform resilience is the functioning interface between the natural environment and designed built infrastructure – the interconnecting boundary between nature, man-made structures and the associated engineered rehabilitation interventions. These structural (hard) interventions need to be designed correctly for the appropriate water volume and intensity. For example, significant sustainability challenges are experienced at locations where concrete stormwater channels, earth berms and/or mesh/stone gabions are used to dissipate water-induced

CHAPTER 2 energy across a designed landscape. These structures are all susceptible to scouring and erosion (Figure 2).

Improving creation of resilient EGSs from available soil, vegetation and water resources

Figure 2: Examples of landform design challenges in rehabilitated landscapes â&#x20AC;&#x201C; interface between natural environment and designed built environment

A rehabilitated landscape will likely provide altered or lower valued EGSs in comparison to the pre-disturbed environment. Removal of large plains of natural grasslands results in, at a minimum, reduced flood control, changes to surface and groundwater flow regimes and loss of fauna habitats. This further results in, for example, changes to qualities and quantities of water available for downstream users, increased soil erosion, and/or compromised capacity and functionality of built infrastructure, such as excessive silting of downstream dams. Re-instating functional water-source ecosystems like wetlands, riparian areas and natural grassy floodplains improves surface water infiltration and harvesting, aquifer recharge, flood attenuation, water filtration and purification and sediment stability. Arguably, these water source areas are the most sensitive ecosystem drivers for longterm system resilience in changing climates, and all land rehabilitation projects should have long-term water management as a key design objective.

Access road and pipeline damaged due to poor storm water management design that failed during an extreme rainfall event

Disintegration of earth berm due to continual cattle movement across slope, resulting in excessive downslope erosion

Failure of gabion during extreme rain event, resulting in wash-down of upstream sediment

Critical to implementation of any suite of functional land uses is the biophysical capability of the underlying and surrounding landscape to be able to support these uses. Land capability is defined as the potential of land depending on its physical and environmental qualities (Minerals Council of South Africa, 2007). From a land rehabilitation perspective, there are fundamentally three core components to this biophysical capability that underpin functional EGSs â&#x20AC;&#x201C; soil, vegetation and water. The way these components are integrated into a rehabilitated area, and managed over


time, will influence the provisioning, regulating, cultural and supporting EGSs available from the landscape into the future.

applied to the rehabilitated landscapes to improve their adaptability to unpredictable environmental changes.

Hence, the way the soil, vegetation and water resources are integrated within a rehabilitated landscape will improve the resilience of the system by increasing the capacity of the landscape to avoid, deflect, absorb or recover from external threats (Sayer et al, 2013). In the case of climate change resilience, landscape capacity can be enhanced by implementing strategies which mitigate the impacts of increased climatic extremes and increase the system’s ability to recover from theses disturbances (Shackelford et al., 2013).

Conclusion Functioning ecosystems are dynamic. They undergo continual change in structure, composition and function driven by complex interactions between natural resource availability, species competition and continual climate variability (Crossman et al, 2016). Ecosystems are naturally robust to these system changes, with natural in-built buffers to mitigate potential disastrous ‘system failures’. When optimally functioning, this enables them to provide a suite of ecosystem services that benefit the socio-ecological structures dependent on them. Recreating such complex systems – often within drastically disturbed

Figure 3 illustrates some biophysical land capability-driven approaches that can be

Figure 3: Biophysical land capability-driven approaches for rehabilitated landscape resilience, adopting an ecosystem goods and services perspective


CHAPTER 2 landscapes, is practically impossible, expensive and time intensive. These disturbed landscapes are often less robust to system fluctuations, lacking the ability to successfully adapt to environmental changes, and providing limited and fragments EGSs. Hence, land rehabilitation will need to be forward-looking, focusing on future trajectories of climate, land use, demographic and socio-economic change, as well as species range shifts (Hobbs

et al., 2009). It will need to focus on re-establishing the core underpinning components of ecosystem processes and functions â&#x20AC;&#x201C; landform, land capabilities and land use (Figure 4). Land rehabilitation practitioners will also need to accept that resilient rehabilitated land will need to look and function in a different manner to the pre-disturbed landscape. As landscapes are altered - either via natural perturbations or man-induced development, governing global and local policies will change, as will the land use

Figure 4: Integrated nature of the core components of land rehabilitation â&#x20AC;&#x201C; landform, land capability and land use, towards achieving resilient, functioning post-disturbance landscapes


practices and needs of the people utilising the land. Fundamentally, the way natural resources are being used is changing all the time; regardless of overarching changes to global climates and weather patterns. Ultimately, land rehabilitation will need to be more attuned to the future multifunctional nature of landscapes, as well as the changing EGCs and social land use demands to which they are subjected. Landscapes - natural or rehabilitated, must be designed and managed as underlying life-support systems for changing, yet adaptable, urban hubs. The use of ecological infrastructure and the ECGs they provide must be in support of these land use needs. References Blignaut, J., Aronson, J. & De Wit, M. (2014). The economics of restoration: looking back and leaping forward. Annals of the New York Academy of Science, 1322. 35 – 47. South African Chamber of Mines. (2007). Guideline for the rehabilitation of land disturbed by surface coal mining in South Africa. Crossman, N.D., Bernard, F., Egoh, B., Kalaba, F., Lee, N., & Moolenaar, S. (2017). The role of ecological restoration and rehabilitation in production landscapes: An enhancedapproach to sustainable development. Working Paper for the UNCCD Global Land Outlook. Hobbs, R.J., Higgs, R. & Harris, A. (2009). Novel ecosystems: implications for conservation and restoration. Trends in Ecology and Evolution, 24(11). 599 – 605. Millennium Ecosystem Assessment. (2005). Living beyond our means: natural assets and human well-being. Island Press, Washington, DC.


Rudel, T.K. & Meyfroidt, P. (2014). Organizing anarchy: The food security– biodiversity– climate crisis and the genesis of rural land use planning in the developing world. Land Use Policy, 36. 239 – 247. South African National Botanical Institute (SANBI). (2015). Strategic framework and overarching implementation plan for ecosystem-based adaptation (EbA) in South Africa 2016 – 2021. Department of Environmental Affairs, Pretoria, South Africa. Sayer, J.T., Sunderland, J., Ghazoul, J.L., Pfund, D., Sheil, E., Meijaard, M., Venter, A. K., Boedhihartono, M., Day,C., Garcia, C., van Oosten, & L. E. Buck. (2013). Ten principles for a landscape approach to reconciling agriculture, conservation, and other competing land uses. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences 110. 8349-8356. Shackelford, N., Hobbs, R.J., Burgar, J.M., Erickson, T.E., Fontaine, J.B., Laliberte, E., Ramalho, C.R., Perring, M.P. & Standish, R.J. (2013). Primed for change: developing ecological restoration for the 21st century. Restoration Ecology, 21 (3). 297 – 304. Zang, J., Meichen, F., Tao, J., Huang, Y., Hasani, F.P. & Bai, Z. (2010). Response of ecological storage and conservation to land use transformation: a case study of a mining town in China. Ecological Modelling, 221(10). 1427 – 1439.


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Ecological Infrastructure and climate change By

Stephen Mallory IWR Water Resources

A lot has been said and written about climate change and how it will affect our water resources. The popular press harps on about decreased rainfall and increased rainfall intensity, and while many of the General Circulation Models (GCMs) do indeed make such predictions, there is seldom consensus amongst climatologists as to how climate change will affect the rainfall of a particular catchment. However, an aspect on which there is consensus is temperature increase (Orskes, 2004). In a recent study of climate change in the Olifants catchment (Sawunyama et al, 2014), all ten GCMs used in the study predicted increased temperature up to the year 2100, some by as much as 2°. In sharp contrast to this, the rainfall change varied so widely that depending on which GCM was selected any water resources outcome was possible from increased runoff to a devastating future with radically reduced runoff. The trend was certainly towards less rainfall but every GCM presents a theoretically possible future outcome and averaging results is not scientifically sound. The correct approach from a water resources perspective is to generate a runoff ensemble using every GCM rainfall projection and produce a probability distribution of future runoff. While some runoff time series produced in this manner may be less likely than others, the average runoff produced is not necessarily the most likely outcome. Given the consensus on increased temperature due to climate change, the question posed here is how increased temperatures will impact on ecological infrastructure and how best can society adapt to prevent the loss of the services provided by this infrastructure. If one considers a catchment in South Africa – the Olifants catchment in Mpumalanga – three

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CHAPTER 3 ecological infrastructure aspects which will be hugely impacted on by increased temperature are invasive alien vegetation (reduction of natural vegetation), erosion and sediment production (loss of soil), and water quality. Already invasive alien plants are becoming a massive problem in drought stricken catchments. A recent paper (Le Maitre, et al, In Press) estimates that approximately 38 million m3/annum of yield is being lost to alien vegetation in the Western Cape system and it is predicted that if nothing is done this will increase to 130 million m3/annum. Increasing temperature will put indigenous vegetation under stress while invasives such as Black Wattle and Eucalyptus will thrive under increased temperatures (Duke and Mooney, 1999) which approach the higher temperatures of their native Australia. While natural sediment production is largely dependent on the natural erosivity of the soils of which a catchment is comprised, poor catchment management such as overgrazing can dramatically increase the sediment production. Increased temperature without an increase in rainfall will stress the natural grazing due to increased evaporative losses from soil moisture leading to increased overgrazing and escalating degradation of the catchment. This will intern lead to increased erosion and sediment production. Slaughter and Mantel (2017), during the course of his development of the Water Quality Systems Assessment Model (WQSAM) water quality model, demonstrated how increased temperatures will lead to increased algae growth in rivers. While algae itself is not a water quality

parameter which is specifically monitored, it is very problematic to most water users, especially those reliant on the river for basic services such a drinking water and washing. Algae also affects irrigators due to blocked canals and sprinkler systems. Hence climate change, or more specifically, temperature increase due to climate change, will result in a deterioration of the ecological services provided by a river as well as increased maintenance costs of irrigation systems. The burning questions is, what can be done about climate change with respect to protecting South Africaâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s ecological infrastructure? While protocols and strategies are in place to reduce carbon emissions these will not reverse the inevitable increase in temperature, at least not in our lifetimes. The best that South Africa can do is therefore to manage the effects of climate change to reduce the negative impacts. Adaptation to climate change will necessitate increased efforts to remove invasive alien vegetation, especially in headwater catchments which feed dams if the yield from these dams is to be secured. These crucial catchments have been identified by the Department of Water and Sanitation (DWS) and Working for Water have an on-going programme to remove alien vegetation from these and other catchments. An accelerated programme may however be required to mitigate the effects of climate change. More effort will be required from the Department of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries Landcare programme to reduce overgrazing and implement erosion reduction measures such as the construction of retaining walls in dongas and erosion lines. Not only will this reduce the loss of valuable top soil and


reduce sedimentation of downstream dams, but it could also be used as a job creation mechanism, in the same way as the Working for Water and Working on Fire programmes. While the potential increased algae growth can be mitigated by increased vigilance in enforcing phosphate limits on effluent discharged into river, other measures may be required to manage excessive algae in canals and escalating hyacinth growth in dams. The question as to who should carry the cost of all the above measures needs to be addressed at a national level. National government has funded alien vegetation removal and erosion prevention measures while irrigators have had to deal with financial implications of eutrophication and algae in their water distribution systems largely at their own cost. While the “polluter pays” principle should govern practice, if polluters are paying there is little evidence of these funds being directed to those affected by the pollution. Accepting that climate change is essentially an environmental issue, then National Environmental Management Act (Act no 107 of 1998) puts the responsibility of responding to climate change on the Department of Environment Affairs. However, when it comes to the practical implementation of adaptation measures, there is a need to consider who is best suited to carry out these tasks. The Climate Change Bill (2018), published in the Government Gazette for comment in June 2018, seems to delegate this function to Municipalities. This must be a recipe for disaster considering a government department’s opinion that 31% of municipalities are dysfunctional and a further 31% described and ‘nearly dysfunctional’ (News 24, 2018). Only 7%


of municipalities are described by COGTA as ‘functioning well’.(Department of Cooperative Governance and Tribal Affair, 2018) So the question we need to ask is, ‘do municipalities have the resources and skills to deal with climate change?’, and if not who should be assigned this responsibility. We have to question Municipality’s ability to take on this task. Of more importance, however, we need to ask what exactly does climate change have to do with a Municipality? The biggest impact of climate change on society is water-related. Predicted decreased rainfall in many areas will lead to more frequent and more severe droughts while predicted increased rainfall intensity will lead to increased flooding. So while municipalities will certainly need to consider improvements on their urban drainage to cope with increased floods, droughts are a national issue, interventions for which are led by the Department of Water and Sanitation. The most immediate impact of climate change, accepting increased temperature as a given, will probably be on agriculture (Increased evapo-transpiration will increase crop water requirements.) If increased temperatures are coupled with decreased rainfall then the impact on agriculture will be dire. Surely this is the domain of the Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry, not municipalities? To conclude, the impact of climate change in South Africa will be largely water related. To delegate the responsibility of a mitigation measures to dysfunctional and insolvent municipalities is a recipe for disaster. It is suggested that the best organisation to address these issues are the Catchment Management Agencies (CMA). While it is acknowledged that to date there are only two functional CMAs, they are both

CHAPTER 3 performing beyond expectations. Climate change impacts are water and catchment related and hence can be best addressed by the CMAs with oversight from the Departments of Environment and Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry as well as Water and Sanitation.


References Duke JS, Mooney HA (1999). Does global change increase4 the success of biological invader. Trends Ecol 14: 134 - 139

Republic of South Africa, 2018. Climate Change Bill, 2018. Government Gazette Vol. 636, No. 41689.

Le Matire D, Gorgens A, Howard G, Walker N. In Press. Impacts of alien plant invasions on water resources and yields from the Western Cape Water Supply System (WCWSS). Water SA. News24. Retrieved November 2018, from https://city-press.news24.com/News/local-

Sawunyama T, Mallory SJL and Pollard, S. 2014. Climate change in the Olifants catchment. Report prepared by AWARD for US Aid.

Slaughter AR, Mantel SK (2017). Land cover models to predict non-point nutrient input for selected biomes in South Africa. Water SA Vol. 43. Oreskes N. 2004. The scientific consensus of global warming. Science 3. Vol. 206, no. 507, p. 1686

Extreme erosion in the Crocodile catchment, Mpumlanga: Photo: S Mallory


Invasive alien vegentation in a water course. Photo: S. Mallory

Algae in an irrigation canal. Photo: P Daniel


The vital role of soil in ecological infrastructure and ecosystem-based adaptation (EbA) Compiled by Lipalesa Sissie Matela, Environmental & Rural Solutions, Matatiele

Introduction Soil is a complex mixture of organic and mineral substances, a dynamic living system with very high variability from place to place. It is a product of the interaction of materials located on a multitude of landscapes in different climatic zones. By its appearance and ability to be worked and produce, soil is a reflection of the different associated soil processes i.e. additions, losses, transformations and translocations (Krzic M, 2008) that have interacted over time, and the amount of activity that takes place above and below the ground by different macro and micro-organisms. All of these factors and processes occur within a wide range of energy potentials to support plant growth and numerous ecosystem services (Lal, 2012). Soil is a non-renewable resource which, if lost, is not recoverable within a human lifespan (du Preez et al, 2011). The rate of its loss far exceeds the rate at which it is formed, mainly due to the different manipulations that it is continuously exposed to including those that lead to degradation and accelerated soil erosion. The average predicted soil loss rate for South Africa is 12.6 tons/ha/year, while the average soil loss rate under annual cropland (grain crops) is 13 tons/ha/year, while the rate of soil formation is less than 5 tons/ ha/year, which means soil is being lost at a much higher rate than it is being formed, constituting a major loss for the country (Le Roux, 2014). At a casual glance, soil may look like a solid mantle covering the earthâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s land surface However, close examination reveals that soil is made up of particles of different shapes and sizes with arrangements that allow for movement of minerals, water, air, plants and other organisms (McClellan et al, 2018).

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CHAPTER 4 Soil use and the state of soils in South Africa Communities in South Africa, both urban and rural, are heavily dependent on the soilâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s ability to produce food and other services and products for household consumption and the markets. Urban and keyhole gardens are increasing in popularity due to their limited area requirements, and because they can utilise compostable household and garden waste and waste water. Commercial farmers are looking for innovative no-till or minimum tillage options to reverse the degradation caused by longterm crop production systems that required use of heavy machinery and excessive amounts of water (GrainSA, 2018). Subsistence or small-scale farmers and traditional leaders in the former homelands are continuing to subdivide the land into smaller and smaller plots, some to sell it off, and others to make sure that their descendants have their share of the inheritance as tradition dictates. Plots are generally extremely small and range of between 0 - 1.5 ha per household and a substantial proportion of these households produce on less than 0.5 ha (Claassens,

Photo 1: Low fertility sandy soil on sloping land, prone to wind and sheet erosion planted with potential cash crop in a low rainfall area.

Photo 2: Sandy soil treated with grey water and household organic waste 2014, Funder, 2001). This practice has resulted in significant losses of ecosystem services which unfortunately has not been quantified due to lack of data for the areas in question. With the current amount of soil data available in the public domain, there is potential to create very good baseline soil maps for the entire country (Paterson et al. 2015). As late as 2014, there was a call to consolidate and make available comprehensive soil information for the country to facilitate planning (Paterson et al, 2015). Soil erosion features such as gullies have become a prominent feature on the rural landscapes close to many subsistence rural settlements, especially in the former Transkei Homeland. Areas like the upper Umzimvubu Catchment are severely infested with wattle, resulting in losses of soil, grazing and water resources. The resulting decline in quality and quantity of land and associated goods and services is forcing people to seek alternative livelihoods, including increasing reliance on pensions and grants. Unfortunately, the general perception has


been that soil loss is a natural phenomenon with no relationship to land user actions and no distinction placed on accelerated erosion (personal communication, Motseng community, Matatiele 2012, 2014). Subsistence farmers in the Matatiele area of the Eastern Cape have been reporting decreasing soil productivity and many have abandoned crop farming in favour of livestock farming. Reasons provided for the transition include declining soil fertility, an increasing frequency of extended dry periods during the growing season, high frequencies of wild fires, and increasing frequency of short duration high intensity storms (Matela, 2013).

Soil functions Healthy soils have the ability to perform several functions in order to deliver ecosystem services and contribute to enabling life on earth. If a soil, either by its nature or through use, is not able to perform any of the functions, that soil is degraded and needs corrective measures. Some of the functions of soils include: • Water purification and soil contaminant reduction, • Climate regulation, • Nutrient cycling, • Habitat for organisms, • Flood regulation, • Source of genetic resources, • Provision of food, fibre and fuel, and • Carbon sequestration (FAO, 2015). Soil-based ecosystem services Through observing the diversity of its functions, biotic and non-biotic, it is evident that soil is a host of several ecosystem services (Ponge, 2015). Ecosystem services can be categorized (see figure 5 below) as:

Photo 3: Severe land degradation due to continuous livestock grazing adjacent to the village.

Photo 4: Summer Grazing Area


• • •

Supporting services – those that support ecosystem function and all other ecosystem services. Examples include: photosynthesis, primary production, formation of soil, nutrient cycling, water cycling. Provisioning services - those that provide products, for example: food, fibre, raw materials, fuel, genetic resources, fresh water. Regulatory services – those that regulate processes within the ecosystem such as climate regulation, water purification and regulation, erosion control, natural hazard regulation,

Chapter 4 •

pollutant filtration/detoxification, disease regulation Cultural services - those that provide non-material benefits to people, including recreation, aesthetic and spiritual experiences, preservation of artefacts (European Commission, 2018).

The diagram below outlines the known ecosystem services specific to soil functioning and their linkages.

Figure 1: Categories of soil ecosystem services (adapted from Lal, 2012) Functional soil properties and processes limiting ability of soil to provide ecosystem services Some soil properties can be used to predict the soil’s capability and ability to perform specific functions that can be determined without carrying out major analyses include: • Depth – determines the physical storage capacity • Texture – determines soil characteristics that affect plant growth such as water-holding capacity permeability, and soil workability, and determines porosity, permeability and the ability of the soil to transmit, exchange and store essential services (Rossi, undated)

• Structure – affects water and air movement in a soil, nutrient availability for plants, root growth, and microorganism activity (http:// www.carlisle.k12.ky.us/userfiles/1044/ Classes/6685/040070) • Setting or position on the landscape – influences if there will be accumulations or losses, and hydrology and drainage (Ofori et al, 2013) • Parent material – has an influence on the type of soil that is formed and influences the concentration of nutrients (McClellan, 2018) • pH – influences availability of nutrients in soils for plant growth (McKenzie, 2003)


The following, in isolation or in combination, can alter or act as impediments to optimal soil functions: • Disturbance of the organic matter equilibrium in soils by human activities such as crop and stock farming, burning and livestock grazing (du Preez et al, 2011), which leads to losses of the organic matter mainly due excessive removal of residues which would otherwise be converted to organic carbon under conducive conditions of moisture and land use; • Compaction and loss of soil structure, leading to poor internal drainage and limiting the ability of soil to hold water and make it available for crop growth and ground water recharge, • Soil acidity and salinity which affect

availability of nutrients for plant growth, hence the potential limits to food production and performance of other functions associated with plant cover (Wu, 2016). Changes in land use, fertilization, clearing and tillage to make it produce more goods and services to meet the needs of the growing population (Hatfield et al, 2017).

These are issues that can be corrected through specific management regimes and innovations such the approach developed for the Umzimvubu Upper Catchment and now facilitated as a research model with SANBI through the Research, Development and Innovation (RDI) platform.

Photo 5: Soil properties that can be used to determine their ability to provide ecosystem services. Sample soil profiles taken from Matatiele Local Municipality area, Eastern Cape


Chapter 4 Table 1: Example of soil profile information that can be used to determine capacity of a soil to provide ecosystem services

Soil quality influence on climate change resilience Soil helps regulate the Earthâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s temperature as well as many of the important greenhouse gases. If soil structure is maintained, its ability to regulate temperatures is i creased through the balanced air and water movement. Improving land management greatly improves the capacity of soil to

sequester carbon and help combat global warming through removing carbon dioxide from the atmosphere with limited impact on land and water. Soil factors and land uses that, for example, could lead to soil compaction and loss of structure and organic matter, have negative impacts on soilâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s ability to contribute to climate change resilience (Haruna et al, 2017).


Umzimvubu Catchment Partnership Programme (UCPP) initiatives build climate change resilience The UCPP and local communities around Matatiele have developed initiatives that support climate change resilience and local livelihoods. The Landscapes for Livelihoods through Rangeland Stewardship & Meat Naturally initiative (MNI) recognizes that if ecosystem goods and services support livelihoods, local people are highly likely to participate voluntarily. The basic principle of this initiative is that, with improved market access good rangeland stewardship, healthy rangelands will produce: • Increased quantity (within carrying capacity) and quality of livestock, – Im proved returns for rural livelihoods, • Improved basal cover and effective catchment functions • Increased grassland biodiversity, with improved ecosystem services Achievements of the initiative contributing to building climate change resilience and ecological infrastructure through local community action It has been five years since the UCPP partners started working in collaboration and working together towards a common goal and the achievements below are a good measure of the progress made: • Change in the mind-set of land users, stock owners and governance authorities • Improved rangelands with enough quality year round grazing for livestock • Reduction in land degradation and rehabilitation of degraded areas, thus helping the soil to function better • Improved livestock quality and productivity • Improved water quality in the streams through improved effectiveness of rainfall


from increased basal cover (and less erosion) and decreased alien plant cover • Market sales through community auctions of over R20 million, putting money directly into the pockets of land users (over 650 households) while reducing the number of livestock units on the landscapes • Enhanced community cohesion • Job creation through land restoration programmes and training and employment of young people from participating villages as Eco rangers

Figure 2: Results of taking care of the soil and improving soil moisture through community cooperation (diagram produced by the Motseng Grazing Association, during a workshop, Matatiele, Eastern Cape. 2014)

Chapter 4 Conclusion Despite soil science being complicated, soil users need to relate the simple appearance and feel of soils to its potential, and have an understanding of the role it plays as an important and dynamic terrestrial ecosystem that needs to be properly managed in order for it to function optimally. Soil degradation is a real and escalating threat caused by unsustainable land uses and management practices that result from various social, economic and governance drivers. Therefore, knowledge about the central function of soil in ecosystem services needs to be effectively integrated with land and water management practices so that it does not get overlooked when policy decisions related to land use and management are being made. References

Bruland, G. (undated) Conservation Structures Conservation Structures NREM 461 NREM (https://www.ctahr.hawaii.edu/brulandg/ teaching/46126/20Cons/20Struct.pdf) Claassens. A. 2014. Rural Womenâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Action Research Programme, Centre for Law and Society, University of Cape Town. du Preez, C.C., van Huyssteen, C.W.,Mnkeni, P.N.S. (2011). Land use and soil organic matter in South Africa 1: a review on spatial variability and the influence of rangeland stock production. South African Journal of Science. vol.107 n.5-6.On-line version ISSN 1996-7489 Environmental and Rural Solutions (2017). Focus Group Discussion: livestock farmers, Mokhotlong, Lesotho. Funder, T.M., Hirsi, A. H., and Madsen, M.V. 2001. Constraints on crop production in Mabua, South Africa. GrainSA, retrieved on November 2018 from www. grainsa.co.za/grain-research/conservation-agriculture Haruna, S.I., Anderson, S.H., Nkongolo, S.V., Reinbott, T. and Zaibon, S. (2017). Soil Thermal Properties Influenced by Perennial Biofuel and Cover Crop Management. In: Soil Science Society of America Journal - Soil & Water Management & Conservation. Vol. 81 No. 5, p. 1147-1156. Hatfield, J.L., Sauer, T.J. &Cruse, R.M. (2017). Chapter

One-Soil: The Forgotten Piece of the Water, Food, Energy Nexus. In: Advances in Agronomy. 143,p.1-46. Krzic M., Sanborn, P., Watson, K., Bomke, A.A., Crowley, C., Doree, A. and Dyanatkar, S. (2008). Soil Formation and Soil Processes. The University of British Columbia, Vancouver, University of Northern British Columbia, and Thompson Rivers University, Kamloops. (https://processes.soilweb.ca/) Lal, R. (2012). Soil resilience and climate change. Carbon management and sequestration center, Ohio State University. Le Roux, J. & Smith,H.( 2014). Soil erosion in South Africa - its nature and distribution. Department of Geography, University of the Free State and Grain SA. Matela, L.S. (2013). Participatory planning for improved rangeland management: Exploring land andwater restoration issues with the Motseng Community, Ongeluksnek. McKenzie, R.H. (2003). Soil pH and Plant Nutrients. Alberta Agriculture and Forestry. McClellan, T., Deenik, J. and Singleton, P. (2018). Soil Nutrient Management for Maui County. University of Hawaii. College of Tropical Agriculture and Human resources. https://www.ctahr.hawaii.edu/mauisoil/ Default.aspx Ofori, E., Atakora, E.T., Kyei-Balffour, N. and Antwi B.O. (2013). Relationship Between Landscape Positions and Selected Soil Properties at a Sawah site in Ghana. African Journal of Agricultual Research. Vol. 8(27) pp 1346-3652. Paterson, G., Turner, D., Wiese, L., van Zijl, G., Clarke, C. & van Tol, J. (2015) Spatial soil information in South Africa: Situational analysis, limitations and challenges. South African Journal of Science. 111 (5/6), p.1-7 Ponge, J-. (2015). The soil as an ecosystem. Biol Fertil Soils 51:645â&#x20AC;&#x201C;648. Rossi A.M. (Undated) Soil Texture and Structure. ORISE Research Fellow at US EPA, Wetlands Division. SANBI and Wildlands Conservation Trust. 2015. Case study: Local government and civil society: Climate change response in Alfred Nzo District Municipality. Compiled by Botts, E.A. for the South African National Biodiversity Institute, Pretoria. SANBI and Wildlands Conservation Trust. 2015. Case Study: Biodiversity Partnership Area: uMzimvubu Catchment Partnership Programme. Compiled by Botts, E.A. for the South African National Biodiversity Institute, Pretoria. Wu, Laosheng (ed.) (2016). Salinity Management. University of California, Division of Agriculture and Natural Resources.


COMMITTED TO MAKING CHANGE HAPPEN The Development Bank of Southern Africa (DBSA) is one of the leading Development Financial Institutions (DFIs) in Africa. At the core of our mandate, the DBSA seeks to play a pivotal role in delivering developmental infrastructure in South Africa and the rest of Africa. The strategy of the DBSA is to provide sustainable infrastructure project preparation, finance and implementation support in selected African markets to improve the quality of life of people, in support of economic growth and regional integration. Our work targets investments mainly in the energy, transport, water and communications sectors. We also provide support to sectors such as health, education and housing.

60 3911 â&#x20AC;˘ www.dbsa.org +27 11 313


developmental Grow and impact each of entrench our businesses to maximise developmental impact

STRATEGIC OBJECTIVES The refined strategic objectives to support its transformation journey: TheDBSA DBSAhas has threeits key strategic objectives:



Grow and entrench each of our businesses to maximise developmental impact


Provide integrated infrastructure solutions across the value chain and be the Provide integrated partner of choice infrastructure for infrastructure solutions across solutions the value chain



and be the Maintainof choice partner MAINTAIN profitability for infrastructure FINANCIAL and operational solutions SUSTAINABILITY efficiency to enable growth in Maintain MAINTAIN equity and profitabilityfund FINANCIAL developmental and operational SUSTAINABILITY Provide activities integrated efficiency to PROVIDING infrastructure enable growth in INTEGRATED solutions equity andacross fund INFRASTRUCTURE the value chain developmental SOLUTIONS and be the activities partner of choice for infrastructure Development Bank of Southern Africa solutions

A triumphal story of resilience in the face of a changing climate. By Jules Newton and Garth Barnes

The impacts of climate change will accentuate social and ecological vulnerability and limit capacity to adapt to changes in ecosystem functioning. It is therefore crucial that appropriate climate change adaptation strategies for both the socio-economic and biophysical environments find tangible links to national development initiatives such as the National Climate Change Response White Paper. The Guidelines for Ecosystem-based Adaptation (Eba) in South Africa (SANBI, 2017) describes ecosystem-based adaptation as the “use of biodiversity and ecosystem services as part of an overall adaptation strategy to help people to adapt to the adverse effects of climate change.” (p. 4) It goes on to emphasise that Eba makes use of “well-functioning ecosystems” to further societal and development outcomes. The concept of Ecosystem-based Adaptation, as posited in the Guidelines, are guided by seven principles which assist in the practical grounding of the values and ideals espoused in Eba. These seven principles are, in turn, focused on four main themes: i) Building resilience (Principles 1, 2 and 7) ii) Inclusivity (Principles 3 and 4) iii) Scale (Principle 5), and iv) Effective management (Principle 6). For the purposes of this article, focus will be placed on resilience as a component of Eba and the focus will only adopt a social systems lens. To illustrate the veracity of this concept, the theory of resilience and its components will be woven with a true-life story of a daughter of the amaBhaca nation: Ms Bongi Mafuya.

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As a critical, influential concept in complexity theory, resilience can be defined simply as the “capacity of a system to absorb a disturbance and to keep functioning in the same kind of way” (Walker et al, p.2 undated). Walker, et al go on to say that a few of the components of resilience are social capital, social cohesion and economic capability, all of which are applicable to Ms Mafuya and her story. Social capital is also an important part of livelihoods theory which recognises the five capitals that contribute to people’s livelihoods and so people learn to depend on them. Bongi Mafuya, a daughter of the amaBhaca nation, slowly began to understand that the use of “wellfunctioning ecosystems” furthers societal and development outcomes but to do that she needed to need to make a great change in her practice: “One week I went home on leave, and realised the

environment around my village was in a very bad state,” says Mafuya. “I decided I wanted to go back to my homeland and do something about it.” Mafuya grew up in KwaBhaca – a region comprising Mount Frere, Umzimkhulu and the surrounding areas. She started her working career as an executive chef at game lodges in Mpumalanga, Gauteng and KwaZulu-Natal, but began to take an interest in the environment. So she asked if she could spend less time in the kitchen and more in the veld. Mafuya noted that the soil was very degraded, and that black wattle had invaded the rivers. “When I grew up there were huge wetlands in the area,” she says. “And I realised they were no longer there.” Mafuya left her job, and started an NGO that would focus on the environment and developing the amaBhaca nation. It was at


this point that Bongi began to engage in a resilience-based and a livelihoods-based approach to Eba, where she began to bring both the natural and social capital, inherent in resilience, together. She began her initiative by networking with likeminded nongovernmental organisations (NGOs) in the area, consulting them and knowledge sharing as much as possible. Next, she got the schools in the area on board, adding an hour a week of environmental studies to the curriculum. Bongi was building social capital, which can be defined as, “an individual’s or group’s ability to secure and obtain resources, knowledge and information through relationships with and among individuals and groups” (NBSSA, 2014). She was, in essence relying on and catalysing her social networks; helping to facilitate trust and finding touch-points of shared norms and


values – all of which are critical dimensions of social capital. These three dimensions of social capital may also be defined as building social cohesion which is integral to the “social ‘glue’ in regional communities and increase coping capacity in times of natural disasters, such as floods and fires”(Walker, et al p. 8, undated). Practically, after deciding that the wattle needed to be cleared away, Mafuya consulted with the local chiefs, who set up and trained task groups of young men to cut and sell the wattle. But that was just the beginning as she noticed that clearing the wattle was opening up more rangeland that was fast dwindling as a result of the rapid wattle invasion. Mafuya had realised that no one was rotating the rangelands correctly in the region, or allowing portions to rest. So she formed a livestock association, to take

CHAPTER 5 on this responsibility. “Cattle just ranged everywhere,” she says, “and the wattle was also encroaching on those rangelands, so the cattle were declining and the system was getting weaker and weaker – it was a destructive, negative cycle. When we cleared up the wattle, the water started to flow again, and the land was restored so that the cattle could thrive.” Healthy cattle opened up a new commercial opportunity – a cattle auction. “There was some resistance,” says Mafuya. “But we sat with the elders and helped them to understand what we were trying to do. At the first auction we only had 50 cattle, and a lot of people watching. But then they saw other people making money. So at the second auction, we had 140 cattle, and the highest amount they sold for was R30 000. This meant community members were getting market-related prices and were no longer struggling financially.” This intervention, which unlocked financial resources, introduces the third component of resilience, according to Walker, et al (undated), viz. economic capability. Walker, et al (p. 8, undated) describe it loosely as “low economic capacity such as high debt: income and % operating costs and low equity) reduces response capacity, and therefore resilience. This concept is further expanded as part of the financial capital understanding of a livelihoods approach which speaks to concepts of the capital base like cash, credit/ debt, savings, and other economic assets, including basic infrastructure and production equipment and technologies. These are critical forms of financial capital or economic capability in the words of Walker, et al (undated). Mafuya took the venture to other villages. She would talk to the chiefs and explain how it all worked. More livestock

associations were formed, and more people started to clear away wattle. The livestock associations are also in partnership with Meat Naturally – a social enterprise that engages and develops the communal livestock sector to encourage sustainable use of natural resources. What many don’t realise is that 50% of the cattle in South Africa belongs to communities like the amaBhaca, but 90% of the meat that is sold comes from commercial sources. Cattle also have to be traceable – this includes details like where they were born, and a full inoculation record – before communities can benefit from selling their cattle for meat. Today Mafuya not only continues her NGO work, but is also a training partner for Avocado Vision, where she trains communities in financial literacy and other enabling life skills. Avocado Vision is the company implementing the Green Business Value Chain (GBVC) with funding from the Department of Environmental Affairs. The GBVC is a systemic commercial response to the serious challenges associated with the battle against the invasion of alien plants. It may seem like a small matter, but records show that they currently take up between 3% to 6% of South Africa’s useable water – in a water-scarce country that’s water we cannot afford to lose! Despite spending R2 billion a year on invasive-clearing activities, research indicates that about R12 billion a year needs to be spent. It is clear that new approaches need to be found. “We have seen this approach work time and time again,” says Jules Newton, project manager for the GBVC. “Clearing aliens strengthens South Africa’s water security, but there’s also enormous benefit for the economy, and the livelihoods of the


communities in the area, thanks to the businesses it stimulates as a result.â&#x20AC;? Newtonâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s words succinctly summarise the story that Bongi owns; a story that displays great innovation as it mobilizes social capital, social cohesion and economic capability, all critical components of resilience, for a socialecological system. This innovation also displays an example of what is possible from a rural development perspective in the face of a changing climate. References: Network for Business Sustainability South Africa. (2014). Measuring and Valuing Social Capital: A Guide for Executives. Network for Business Sustainability South Africa. Retrieved from: www.nbs.net/knowledge South African National Biodiversity Institute (SANBI). (2017) Guidelines for Ecosystem-based Adaptation (EbA) in South Africa. South African National Biodiversity Institute, Pretoria. Walker, B., Abel, N., Andreoni, F., Cape, J., Murdoch, H., & Norman, C. (undated). General Resilience. A discussion paper based on insights from a catchment management area workshop in South Eastern Australia.



Working on Fire - 15 years of service to South Africa

In September 2018 South Africa lost a true ambassador who clamoured for climate change on a global platform but moreover an environmentalist who also understood what impact climate change could have on how we should prepare and manage fires in our ecosystems.

By Linton Rensburg

This was one of the many mantras of the late Environmental Affairs Minister, Dr Edna Molewa - a leader who was committed to ensuring that South Africa understand and implement policies that would assist in managing our ecosystems more succinctly through programmes such as Working on Fire and Working for Water. As South Africa laid our late minister to rest in early October 2018, one is reminded of Dr Molewaâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s effort, and commitment, to ensuring our fire and water management programmes are functioning optimally. Such was her desire to ensure that all South Africans understand the need to adapt to this â&#x20AC;&#x153;new normalâ&#x20AC;? she often wrote very powerful opinion editorial pieces to highlight the need for more stringent measures to ensure that landowners can adapt their fire management practices. This article is thus in honor of the late Minister of Environmental Affairs, Dr Edna Molewa and the many legacies she has left with us. One of them was her unfettered commitment shown to the young men and women in the Working on Fire programme. Working on Fire and fire management in perspective Working on Fire celebrates 15-years existence this year, and by all accounts the programme been a resounding success, earning several awards, excelling in reaching its published goals and transforming the

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CHAPTER 6 lives of its participants and their families, beyond expectations. The Working on Fire Programme was launched in September 2003 and resides under the Department of Environmental Affairs (DEA). Through the Programme, young men and women are trained to become skilled participants who are deployed across the country to implement integrated Fire Management (IFM) solutions to reduce the personal, environmental and economic harm caused by unwanted wildfires. Today, the programme employs more than 5,000 young wildland firefighters, stationed in more than 200 teams throughout the major fire-prone areas in South Africa. To understand fire management in South Africa we need to know that we have two fire seasons according to rainfall patterns, the dry summer months in the Western Cape, and the dry winter months in the rest of the country. Often wildland fires are started by lightning or, in mountainous regions, by falling rocks. Most, however, are started by accident by people being careless with open flames and indifferent to the consequences of their carelessness.

modern humans have used veldfires for hunting and for managing their environment. Today, fire is still employed in the management of veld and forest, to control grazing and habitats, and as a tool in the prevention of uncontrolled fires. However, small fires frequently escalate into disastrous, uncontrolled wildfires. Wildfire is not a bad thing, itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s a natural event with which our land has evolved â&#x20AC;&#x201C; South Africa is, as one scientist once put it, a country shaped by fire, with about 70% of our ecosystems adapted to fire. Fires sweep across the grasslands every winter and are essential to the regeneration of fynbos in the Cape. Climate change Climate change has continued to have an impact on rising temperatures across South Africa as temperatures rose on average 3% to 5% and this often is accompanied by long dry spells which in turn also exacerbate the occurrence of uncontrolled wildfires.

Fire adapted ecosystems About 70% of the ecosystems covering South Africa are fire-adapted. They need to burn to maintain their ecological integrity. But because of human activity there is a need to manage fire in a manner that is appropriate for the land-use and land-type, while maintaining natural processes and patterns as far as possible.

How do we mitigate against all these factors? Working on Fire implements a model called Integrated Fire Management (IFM) which is a holistic approach to managing wildfire â&#x20AC;&#x201C; a concept resulting from extensive and in-depth research into the field of wildland firefighting. This approach advocates a proactive, rather than reactive, approach to wildfires. It enables authorities to capitalise on the beneficial uses of fire and equips them with the right solutions to limit the spread of unwanted wildfires, reducing damages and loss of life and limb.

Fire as a management tool A million years ago early humans began to utilise fire and for the last 100 000 years

Integrated Fire Management is divided into the four Rs: Reduction, Readiness, Response and Recovery.


Fire as a management solution This approach is built on the notion that wildfires can be managed, if dealt with proactively, rather than reactively and that quality resources (the necessary equipment, vehicles, trained firefighters) should be available should a fire occur. This approach drastically minimises the loss of life, property and the environment.

aerial ignition of prescribed fires can be used to fight fire with fire.

Annually the Working on Fire programme on average responds to more than 2000 fires across South Africa. Working on Fire crews, both ground an aerial resources provide an essential support to local, district and provincial fire authorities. Over the past 3 years these firefighters provided the bulk of the firefighting resources during major fires such as in Knysna in June 2017 and Cape Town in March 2015.

As a result, bush encroachment reduces the carrying capacity for livestock, which effects the livelihood of the surrounding population and could even lead to a loss in national economy. This excess of fuel also feeds wildfires and makes it very difficult for responders to access the terrain.

Reduction (Prevention) Prevention is certainly better than cure and for that reason Working on Fire advocates a proactive approach to fighting wildfires. This includes helping with putting the right legislation in place to govern how fires are managed, creating community awareness and educating communities on fire safety, advocating and implementing prescribed fires and fuel load reduction.

Fuel Load Reduction Bush encroachment occurs in savannahs across the globe. It takes place when palatable grasses and herbs are overtaken by woody species. These plants are often unpalatable to domestic livestock.

Alien invasive vegetation also encroaches natural habitats that reduces water availability and has a negative impact on land use and increases the risk of fires. Landowners have a legal obligation to control alien invasive plants and vegetation on their land holdings. Fuel loads can be reduced through: mechanical bush clearing, manual bush clearing, chemical control methods and controlled burning.

To this effect all 5000 plus Working on Fire firefighters annually clear thousands of hectares through prescribed burning and fuel load reduction measures.

Rehabilitation and Research The aftermath of a wildfire requires rehabilitation of the burnt area. Immediate dangers include soil erosion and longer-term damage by invasion of exotic and invasive plant species.

Controlled burning The amount of time spent on active risk reduction, directly relates to a decrease in the amount of time spent on suppression. Integrated Fire Management strongly advocates the use of controlled prescribed fire to reduce fuel loads and the potential of catastrophic wildfires. Both ground and

In commercial areas, there can be a need to remove burnt materials and re-plant commercial crops and trees. In order to be better prepared in the future, research should be done to determine how the fire started, what contributed to the spreading thereof and how best to prevent similar occurrences it in the future.


Chapter 6 A case in point was the post Knysna fires of June 2017 where Working on Fire crews played a key role in the rehabilitation of the burned areas throughout Knysna. Working on Fire teams used the burnt vegetation and trees by stacking them in strategic areas along the contours to help prevent soil erosion. The stack line prevented further sheet erosion by allowing faster plant regeneration, and opening terrain for easy access for herbicide application to alien invasive plants. Other measures were implemented, such as the laying of bio-degradable berms (â&#x20AC;&#x2DC;biosausagesâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;) and blankets. The bio-sausages slow water velocity, prevent or reduce sediment flowing down steep slopes and reduce the chances of mudslides. After installing the bio-sausage, grass seed is sown along the sausages. Fire Awareness Working on Fire endeavours to create communities adapted to wildfires through education of fire management principles and promotion of partnerships.

Crews are developed as Fire Awareness Practitioners to educate people at grassroots level in schools and communities across South Africa about the safe and responsible use of fire in and around homes or properties and in the natural environment Over the past 6 years more than 2 million people have been reached through this countrywide fire awareness programmes. Conclusion We all have a duty to take every precaution to stop this human-made problem, and all citizens should be part of the solution. There are basic precautions. Do not start fires, particularly on windy days. Report fires immediately. Fire-proof your properties, and fire-proof your homes. Abide by the Fire Protection Association rules. Learn what to do in the event of being caught in a fire. And, please, clear all invasive species on your land. Do contact Working on Fire for advice on all of these items. Contact news@wofire.co.za or 021.418-2383 or workingonfire.org for details.


Investing in ecological infrastructure for water security and climate resilience By Mahlodi Tau

South Africaâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s 2030 development agenda South Africa has identified water security as among the key components of the National Development Plan (NDP) Vision 2030 Achieving Vision 2030 requires South Africa to provide an affordable and reliable access to sufficient and safe water for socio economic growth with due regard for the environment (National Planning Commission 2011). Water is a critical and strategic natural resource in South Africa which drives economic activities in key sectors such as mining, agriculture, manufacturing tourism and heavy industries, amongst others (see figure 1). Based on the current demand projection, the water deficit confronting the country is between 2.7 - 3.8 billion cubic meters of water which would account to approximately 17% by 2030 (Department of Water and Sanitation 2018). Without a stable supply of water, the countryâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s development agenda will be restricted and significantly constrain Vision 2030 agenda.

Figure 1: contribution and current water needs to the major economic sectors (Source: DWS, 2013)

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CHAPTER 7 Figure 2: Distribution of South Africa’s Strategic water source areas (Nel 2017)

South Africa, therefore, is naturally a water-stressed country. The NDP Vision 2030 points out that the water stress, amongst others, is also driven by the poor state of water ecosystems in South Africa. The water resources in South Africa continues to be under enormous stress from the unguaranteed security of supply, environmental degradation, climate change risks, resource pollution and eroded water governance structures. There is a need for concrete efforts to avert sources of stress on water through a focused intervention on the critical ecological infrastructure such as the mountain catchments, estuaries, rivers, wetlands and aquifers. Ecological Infrastructure refers to the naturally functioning ecosystems that generate and deliver valuable services to humans (SANBI 2013). Ecological infrastructure is the foundation and the source of the country’s water supplies and are replenished by precipitation. Ecological infrastructure is also the nature-based equivalent of built infrastructure and is equally important for providing services and underpinning socio-economic development. Strategic water source areas Evidence indicates that South Africa’s important strategic water source areas are typically the mountain catchments, which,

however, constitute only 8% of the country’s land surface and generate over 51% of the water supply and support over 64% of the country’s economy (Nel et al. 2017). This is an indication of the extent of the scarcity of water and furthermore shows South Africa as a naturally water stressed country. Despite the severity of the stress, these important ecological infrastructure continues to provide fresh water, regulate climate, soil formation, and help in disaster risk reduction through, for instance, flood mitigation. It is imperative that these natural assets are protected, carefully managed, rehabilitated, and incompatible land uses restrained to ensure they are well functioning and able to provide valuable services such as water to the society (SANBI 2013; WWF-SA 2016). It is a just call to ensure ecological infrastructure is secured for the suite of benefits. South Africa is also empowered by global frameworks to secure ecological infrastructure. According to the 2030 Agenda, the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) also recognise these important ecological infrastructure through the adoption of Target 6.6 aimed at protecting and restoring water related ecosystems including mountain catchments, forests, wetlands, rivers, aquifers and lakes to


support the achievement of SDG 6 which calls for a clean water and sanitation for all the people (Department of Water Affairs 2018). Unfortunately, our important ecological infrastructure are facing significant threats from incompatible land uses and a changing climate. Today the freshwater ecosystems including rivers and wetlands are amongst the most threatened of the countryâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s ecosystems (WWF-SA 2016). As already mentioned, compounding these challenges is the risk posed by the impact of climate change on these water resources. Ecological infrastructure for climate resilience and disaster reduction Water is also a primary medium through which the impact of climate change is being felt in South Africa according to the National Water Resource Strategy, Second Edition (Department of Water Affairs 2013). The Department of Environmental Affairs (DEA) (2015) has reported that South Africa is already experiencing a changing climate through higher mean annual temperatures, higher minimum-and-maximum daily temperatures, more frequent hot extremes, and fewer cold extremes, as well as more variable rainfall with a tendency towards more intense rainfall events and longer dry spells. These climate variability and climatic extremes are impacting both water quality and availability through changes in rainfall patterns, changes in soil moisture and runoff, with more-intense storms, floods and prolonged droughts with varying impacts on water security. These projected extreme events will significantly impact water resources and may result in a decrease in water quality due to run-off and erosion, decrease in water quantity due to prolonged drought, rapid spread of invasive alien plants


and ultimately a stagnant economy due to profit fall and prolonged drought and flooding. Climate change can affect the functioning of ecological infrastructure and disrupt the ecosystem services it provides, with resulting implications for the well-being of human communities that rely on these services. This will disproportionately affect rural and poor communities who rely most directly on ecosystem services for water and food security, but are also excluded from modern technology and innovations that would help them adapt (CBD, 2009). Ironically enough, it is important to note that South Africa is one of the most biodiverse countries in the world and this diversity extends to our freshwater ecosystems, with around 1,000 different types of river and wetland ecosystems (WWF-SA 2016). This rich biodiversity, ecological infrastructure, and associated ecosystem services are usually more able to continue providing valuable watershed services and resist and recover more readily from extreme weather events than degraded, impoverished ecosystems. A study in the uMngeni catchments, for instance, has revealed that intact well-functioning vegetation has the ability to deliver high volumes of dryseason base flow, low surface run-off, lower sediment yield than a degraded vegetation and ecological infrastructure (Pringle et al. 2016; see figure 3). The findings from the Pringle et al. (2016) study revealed significant benefits to improve water security by investing in the rehabilitation and maintenance of important ecological infrastructure in the priority catchments over a 50 year period. The studyâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s results revealed that these interventions can: - reduce sediment loads by 50 465 045


tons (1 009 301 tons/year); increase water supply by 359 356 960 m3 (7 187 139 m3/year), which translates to an increase in yield of approximately 2% per year for the uMngeni River catchment as a whole; and increase base flow by 82 659 438 m3 (1 653 189 m3/year) (Pringle et al., 2016).

This is a typical example of the value of biodiversity and well-functioning ecological infrastructure to help vulnerable communities buffer against the impact of climate change whilst continuing to provide valuable services such as water. This form of interventions on adaptation to climate change is termed Ecosystembased Adaptation (fig 4). Ecosystembased Adaptation to climate change uses biodiversity and ecosystem services to help people adapt and build resilience to the adverse effects of climate change. These nature-based approaches are aimed at maintaining and increasing the resilience and reduce the vulnerability of ecosystems and people in the face of the adverse effects of climate change (DEA & SANBI 2016). Ecosystem-based approaches for climate change adaptation Ecosystem-based Adaptation (EbA) uses sustainable management, conservation and restoration of ecological infrastructure taking into account anticipated climate change impact trends to reduce vulnerability and improve the resilience of ecosystems and communities (See figure 4). The concept of EbA is recognised for its potential to vulnerable communities to cope with climate change. The benefits, detailed by Pringle et al. (2016), from investing in ecological infrastructure will ensure nature maintain its

ability to buffer against climate change and continue to provide ecosystem services to vulnerable communities. Such vulnerabilities were experienced in the Cape Town region whereby communities were faced with the hard realities of running out of water due to prolonged drought and degraded mountain catchments infested with invasive alien plants. It is estimated that the invasive alien plants consume 20 times more in the Cape Town region than the indigenous fynbos plants (The Nature Conservancy 2018). The prolonged drought affected water urban users and also had significant consequences or the tourism and agriculture sectors. Figure 2: Description of Ecosystem-based Adaptation. Ecosystem-based Adaptation integrates biodiversity and ecosystem conservation, climate change adaptation and socio-economic benefits. CBA = Community based Adaptation, CLICS = Climate change integrated conservation strategies, CBNRM = Community based natural resource management. From Midgley et al. (2012) (source: DEA and SANBI, 2016). Sustainable development

Socioeconomic benefits

CBNRM projects

CBA projects Ecosystembased adaptation

Biodiversity and ecosystem conservation


Ecosystem-based Adaptation offers naturebased solutions and significant opportunities to ensure that interventions respond to the imperatives of climate change, socio-economic development and biodiversity management and conservation (DEA and SANBI 2016). The approaches offers an excellent opportunity as the country is pursuing Vision 2030. However, the loss of ecological infrastructure negatively affects system yield and increases water-related risks. Degraded wetlands, for example, lose their ability to release water in times of drought, or to recharge groundwater supplies. Degraded ecological infrastructure increases the vulnerability of people and built infrastructure to floods, and increases maintenance and repair costs on built infrastructure. A study from the Greater Cape Town catchments has demonstrated that investing in ecological infrastructure of priority catchments through the removal of invasive alien plants is the most sustainable means of augmenting water supply for the Cape Town regional. Through clearing of invasive alien plants, the mountain catchments in the Cape Town region has the ability to generate annual water gains of 50 billion litres a year within five years (The Nature Conservancy 2018). The Cape Town region is currently losing an estimated 55 billion litres of water a year due to alien plant invasions in the main water source areas. This is the equivalent of nearly two months of Cape Townâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s annual water supply and without nature-based interventions, the vulnerabilities of the people of Cape Town to buffer against the impact of climate change could worsen. Nevertheless EbA interventions have the potential to be relatively cost-effective and adaptive in the long-term when compared to other adaptation solutions that rely on engineering and hard infrastructure. The


co-benefits of EbA contribute towards a broader set of socio-economic and development goals, including job creation, poverty reduction and rural/peri-urban development. In a developing country context where limited resources need to be used efficiently, providing for multiple outcomes is particularly important. For instance, the net value of the cost of rehabilitation of ecological infrastructure in priority catchments in the uMngeni will cost a mere R268 335 142 over a 50 year period Pringle et al. (2016) and significantly increase supply in the system. An investment of about R372 million (USD $25.5 million) towards alien clearing in the Greater Cape Town will generate annual water gains of about 50 billion of litres a year within five years and has the potential to increase to 100 billion litres within 30 years (The Nature Conservancy 2018). A call to invest in ecological infrastructure for water security Ecosystem-based Adaptation to climate change offers an excellent opportunity for more proactive approaches to conserving ecological infrastructure and integrating both environmental and climate change issues to meet the developmental needs of the society. It is an effective means of sustaining livelihoods of the rural and poor communities who are relatively more directly dependent on natural resources and ecosystem services in adapting to climate change. The approach will contribute significantly to governmentâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s efforts towards rural development and overcoming poverty affecting over 30 million South Africans. Considering ecological infrastructure in the planning and national policies will offer cost-effective solutions to the state and adaptive approaches in the long-term when compared to adaptation solutions that rely strictly on























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engineering and hard infrastructure. This will contribute significantly towards achieving the 2030 national development agenda of the country. References 1. National Planning Commission, 2011. National Development Plan Vision for 2030; Pretoria, South Africa. 2. DEA and SANBI, 2016. Strategic Framework and Overarching Implementation Plan for Ecosystem-Based Adaptation (EbA) in South Africa: 2016 â&#x20AC;&#x201C; 2021. Department of Environmental Affairs, Pretoria, South Africa. 3. Department of Environmental Affairs, 2015. Climate Change Adaptation Plans for South African Biomes (ed. Kharika, J.R.M., Mkhize, N.C.S., Munyai, T., Khavhagali, V.P., Davis, C., Dziba, D., Scholes, R., van Garderen, E., von Maltitz, G., Le Maitre, D., Archibald, S., Lotter, D., van Deventer, H., Midgely, G. and Hoffman, T). Pretoria, South Africa. 4. Pringle, C., Bredin, I., McCosh, J., Dini, J., Zunckel, K., Jewitt, G., Hughes, C., de Winnaar, G. and M. Mander, 2015. An Investment Plan for securing ecological infrastructure to enhance water security in the uMngeni River catchment. Green Fund, Development Bank of Southern Africa, Midrand


5. WWF-SA 2016, Water: Facts & Futures. WWF-SA, South Africa 6. Department of Water and Sanitation (2013) National Water Resource Strategy: Water for an equitable and sustainable future; Pretoria, South Africa. 7. SANBI (South African National Biodiversity Institute), 2013. Ecological infrastructure factsheet, August 2013. South African National Biodiversity Institute, Pretoria, South Africa. 8. Department of Water and Sanitation, 2018. National Water and Sanitation Master Plan â&#x20AC;&#x201C; Volume 1: Call to Action. Pretoria, South Africa. 9. The Nature Conservancy 2018, The Greater Cape Town Water Fund: Assessing the return of investment for ecological infrastructure restoration. Cape Town, South Africa 10. Nel J, Le Maitre D, Roux D, Colvin C, Smith J, Smith-Adao L, Maherry A, and Sitas N (2017). Strategic water source areas for urban water security: Making the connection between protecting ecosystems and benefiting from their services. Ecosystem Service. http://dx.doi. org/10.1016/j.ecoser.2017.07.013

The Disconnected Choice

Introduction: Ecosystem-based Adaptation (EbA) is the use of biodiversity and ecosystem services as part of an overall adaptation strategy to help people to adapt to the adverse effects of climate change (CBD, 2009; DEA & SANBI, 2016).

By Grant Trebble

Logic would dictate that the best chance the planet has to adapt to the expected impacts of climate change would be to have the healthiest possible ecosystems. Logic would further dictate that, given the enormity of the challenge and the shortening horizons, there would be a globally strategic and coordinated response to ensuring that ecosystems are urgently protected and restored. However, we are faced with a continued loss of ecosystem integrity, weak and compromised protection mechanisms and an almost Quixotic quest to protect hard infrastructure without any assurance that the expenditure will achieve the required results. In fact, and as an example, coastal cities are planning and committing nationally appropriated funds to protect against sea-level rise. The city of Miami is currently spending USD 400 million on pumps and raising the level of roads to mitigate against an above average 9mm annual sea-level rise, in the full knowledge that this will need to be revisited within the next two decades with, hopefully, new technologies in place. Interestingly, they have chosen wilfully to ignore the possibility of super-storms making the city very unattractive to inhabit anyway. (https:// www.theguardian.com/environment/2018/ sep/24/americas-era-of-climatemassmigration- is-here)

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The Working for Water and Value-Added Industries project outlined below is a prime example of strengthening the health of ecosystems to ensure biodiversity losses are contained as best as possible and maximum, natural waterflows are achieved. The most pressing problem is how to fund ecosystem protection and restoration in a world where increased populations and climate related threats to humans receive greater focus, responses and resource allocation. The most pressing problem is how to fund ecosystem protection and restoration in a world where increased populations and climate related threats to humans receive greater focus, responses and resource allocation. Despite having one of the largest environmental restoration programmes in the world, as a percentage of GDP, South Africa has an 80% shortfall in available funds to tackle invasive plants species; a major contributor to the rapid

degradation of ecosystems, resulting in reduced waterflows within a water-stressed region. The Department of Environmental Affairs (DEA) has been very innovative and supportive in trying to leverage additional budget allocations from the National Treasury and encourage private sector participation through the Land User Incentive Programme which tries to secure equally matched funding for a broader response to ecosystem restoration. Worryingly, this fiscal shortfall, in the most part, excludes funding for a broader restoration programme of areas cleared under the environmental programmes or areas that are eroded/degraded as a result of poor land use practices. In South Africa, and probably elsewhere in the world, the threats to healthy ecosystems lie partly in the lack of suitable funding mechanisms, but mostly in a misallocation of funds to protect infrastructure that will not necessarily achieve its goals in the medium-term.


The decision to protect hard infrastructure assets is not unique to the United States and examples could probably be found in most countries; despite the projected global, annual loss of approximately USD 4,3 trillion per annum (on the lower scale) of ecosystem services. (https://www. britishecologicalsociety.org/ecosystemservices-changes-in-global-value/) The reallocation of these climate mitigation and adaptation funds away from hard infrastructure to ecosystems would provide a better return in the long-term. The choice has been made to protect hard assets while ecosystem health continues to decline. Recent flooding in the United Kingdom can be directly linked to perverse farming subsidies (https://ec.europa.eu/ agriculture/sites/agriculture/files/cap-post2013/graphs/graph1_en.pdf), poor land use practices and changing climatic conditions. Globally, wildfires are breaking records in intensity and frequency with massively increased human, animal and financial losses. Land degradation continues unabated as deserts spread and neutrality targets are optimistically set for 2030.


Ironically, this disconnected choice is not only the more expensive option, it is the option with the lowest chance of success. The Virtuous Cycle: DEA Programmes Addressing Ecosystem Health While Trying to Add Value for Financial Sustainability: The innovation within the DEA, in conjunction with the private sector, has provided another world first in creating a virtuous cycle of utilising cleared invasive biomass to manufacture the very same materials required for the restoration of the cleared areas and other degraded landscapes. In the eastern Free State, several thousand hectares of invasive poplar have been removed and new invasive growth prevented with the biomass being used to manufacture planks and a range of restoration materials from erosion blankets to fibre for hydro-seeding and, ultimately, topsoil replacement products. The planks have been used by the DEA Eco- Furniture Programme factories to manufacture school desks for government identified schools and

CHAPTER 8 the restoration materials have been going to national parks, erosion mitigation projects and even assisted in slope restoration after the devastating Knysna fires. Not only has this innovative project increased waterflows in the catchments associated with the harvesting efforts but it has laid a foundation whereby value can be extracted from the biomass which can, in turn, be reinvested into additional harvesting, clearing and restoration work – the ‘Virtuous Cycle’. One must recognise that limitations exist in that the government is, in most cases, both the funder and the client. Critical clearing and restoration efforts are needed mostly in upper catchments which are owned or managed by the State. This would mean that they not only have to fund the clearing, the manufacturing of enough restoration materials but also must find budget to apply the materials in often difficult terrains. That there are competing interests for a finite budget and that the hard-infrastructure lobby groups remain in the driving seat is not in dispute; however, the groupings that do understand these constraints must consider alternate models to fund this ‘Virtuous Cycle’ and other ecosystem restoration innovations as a matter of urgency. Small Tweaks Almost unannounced, the Department of Trade and Industries changed the specifications for school furniture to be 100% local content which immediately supported an underpressure sector of the economy and ensured that the quality and lifespan of desks delivered to schools increased significantly. Consider the impact that the following

‘Small Tweaks’ would have on ecosystems through providing impetus to clearing projects and additional revenue sources for strategic restoration work: • • • • •

Tenders submitted with 10% of materials sourced from invasive biomass will receive an additional 5 points. Restoration materials used in mine rehabilitation, road verges and any otherapplication must have 100% local content and 50% invasive biomass content. Erosion control materials used by the state must have 50% invasive content. Large water users must include invasive biomass in 30% of their packaging materials. The state and private sector must achieve 10% green procurement targets within 5 years.

Couple this to a contractor development and incubation programme and there is a real chance of a green economy taking hold. The question as to what prevents us from making these small adjustments remains unanswered. Not only would these ‘small tweaks’ have an immediate impact on addressing invasive biomass infestations, they would create many new businesses and jobs, reduce the need for certain imports, improve water security and provide much needed budgets for the restoration of ecosystems in anticipation of the uncertainties ahead related to climate change. The Large Tweak In addition to the above adjustments, there is a need to trial and implement catchmentspecific Payment for Ecosystem Services (PES) programmes.


PES programmes are complex and have failed on occasion, but they provide two critical opportunities; budgets for catchmentwide ecosystem restoration efforts and the transfer of wealth to communities whom are the custodians of ecosystems that provide critical services to downstream urban centres. Water provision is the obvious service that can be levied through purification savings but other services such as biodiversity must be considered as potential income sources for marginalised rural communities. The corporatisation of ecosystem services through parachuted-in expertise must be avoided at all costs as it will only diminish returns to the people that are directly linked to the ecosystems. The innovation of the current DEA efforts around invasive plant biomass coupled to the ‘Small Tweaks’ listed above may be the entry point into trialling and implementing PES programmes. There is already a national footprint in place through the Working for Water, Working for Ecosystems, EPIP, EcoFurniture Programme and others which are well established and supported. In addition, the private and civil society sectors have provided entry points into the innovations necessary for invasive biomass to be profitably introduced into greening value chains. The Oxymoron – Grow to Prosperity We are faced with a global situation where unemployment is rising, manufacturing is being automated and there is rapid urbanisation. The solution touted by most countries is to grow GDP to such an extent


that it will absorb the existing unemployed and new entrants to the job market. South Africa would need a growth rate in excess of 10% for a decade at least to achieve this balancing act. However, this GDP growth is off the back of the same economic model that has zero-rated the destruction of natural (and often human) capital and brought about rapid increases in climate changing impacts with more to come. In addition, the global economy is faced with increasing populations that need to be catered for and the only solution, when pressured, is to open access through non-restorative extractive technologies to ecosystems that creates a vicious looping effect further exacerbating the problems. We are faced with a unique opportunity to leverage off the existing DEA programmes to redefine a new economy that is both equitable and restorative. It will not be possible to persuade those at the helm of the current economic model to change course, but it is possible to start thinking and demonstrating new models using the one commodity the current economy generally takes for granted but is highly at risk over; water. By being more strategic with current resources, by making the ‘Small Tweaks’ and demonstrating the possibilities of PES to resolve water security issues, by transferring wealth to rural communities and creating sustainable jobs, the opportunity exists to trigger a green, transformative economic model. This new economic model is the only way we will have any ecosystems in a state-of-health close to being able to adapt or be adapted to tackle the impact of climate change.


Separation and Purification Science

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Case Studies Index


Monash University






Ebara Pumps


SBS Tanks






Vovani Water


Hydromine Projects


Sensus Water SA



Investing in water research Water security plays a significant role in economic growth, environmental conservation and sustainable development. A water secure society reduces poverty, increases living standards and enhances sustainability. The reliable availability of an acceptable quantity and quality of water has a major bearing on the ways in which society functions. The Water Research node at Monash South Africa emphasise the need for investments in both physical infrastructure and human institutions to secure scarce water resources. One of their key capacity building initiative is to build water leaders of the future, leaders who have the knowledge, skills and capacities to respond to complex water challenges and to develop interdisciplinary, practical solutions to water and sanitation problems which will have meaningful impacts on communities, our country and societies at large. The educational offerings are targeted at water professionals in South Africa and the broader Southern African region in lower to middle-level management positions; as well as those who are working in related technical fields such as River Basin Management, Groundwater Management, Water Supply and Sanitation, Water Resource Planning, Water Resource Economics, and Water Treatment. The qualification also provides an important starting point particularly for water professionals who wish to exercise managerial responsibilities in their respective work places. With personalised attention and access to global network opportunities, this one-year qualification will strengthen your knowledge, allowing you to make a real difference to society. Visit our website for more information on the Postgraduate Diploma in Water Management as well as the Master of Philosophy in Integrated Water Management.



Industrial Water Efficiency Project Case study: Rainbow Chicken Limited RCL’s Rustenburg plant achieved significant water savings in just one year amounting to an annual saving of 89 607 kilolitre of water.

Kevin Cilliers NCPC-SA Regional Manager Water is an important resource addressed through Resource Efficient and Cleaner Production (RECP), and through the work of the National Cleaner Production Centre South Africa (NCPC-SA), water savings have been achieved in a number of industrial plants over the past few years. However, most companies are only beginning to embrace the need for improved water efficiency and stewardship. To support industry in this move, the NCPC-SA launched the Industrial Water Efficiency (IWE) Project in March 2017. Seven water assessments were completed in the first year. Potential water savings of 22.7 million kilolitres were identified in the seven companies, with an estimated financial value of R 61 million. This reflects a 160% increase in potential water savings identified by the NCPC-SA year-on-year. By early 2018, the project recorded its first actual water savings of 89 000 kl in one plant - Rainbow Chicken Limited (RCL) Rustenburg.

The plant is a significant water user, consuming over one million kilolitre of water annually, equating to approximately two percent of the total local municipal potable water supply. Consequently, the plant initiated an assessment to determine how to reduce water usage and ease its burden on the municipal supply. These interventions were implemented: • The installation of automatic water shut-off valves. • Implementation of a leak management programme. • Cleaning equipment was upgraded. Overall RCL Foods Rustenburg achieved a 7.96% reduction on their water intensity amounting to an actual volume reduction of 89 607 kL each for water intake and effluent generation. This translated into financial savings totalling R2 200 468.


Moretele LM Municipality, North West: Roads, Water and Sanitation Project R148.84 million loan allocated for the implementation of the Moretele LM Municipal Infrastructure Grant Pledging Programme for roads, water and sanitation infrastructure Moretele is situated in the Bojanala Platinum District Municipality, north of Pretoria, adjoining four provinces - North West, Gauteng, Mpumalanga and Limpopo. Most people live in villages and traditional areas, with the majority of economic activity in the area coming from platinum mining. To address the infrastructure backlogs faced by the municipalities, subsidisation of interest costs for the under-resourced municipalities was required. The programme encompasses 10 projects that span provision of sanitation infrastructure, construction of water reticulation infrastructure and construction of paved roads in the municipal area, as well as the construction of sports facilities. Programme objectives • Eradicating service delivery backlogs in the water and roads infrastructure sectors • Improving the health of community members • Creating temporary employment opportunities • Alleviating poverty in the local communities Development outcomes and measurable impacts • 3 164 households benefited from the project: - 1 884 households have access to sanitation services - 1 279 households have access to water supply services • 601 temporary job opportunities created in the implementation of the programme • 13.4km upgrading and resealing of roads and construction of stormwater drainage facilities • 6.5km of new paved roads completed



Polokwane, Limpopo: AC Network Pipes Replacement Project R235 million grant from DBSA Project Preparation and R25 million grant approved by IIPSA for the Polokwane Local Municipality Asbestos-Cement (AC) Pipes Network Replacement Capital Expenditure Programme The Polokwane AC Water Network Pipes Replacement project is one of the municipality’s key projects in its Integrated Development Plan, as an anchor project to enable attainment of its Smart City Vision. The balance of the required R460 million for the project has been funded by Standard Bank. Polokwane is the economic hub and capital city of Limpopo province, and is the largest metropolitan complex in the northern region of South Africa. A large percentage of the population live in Polokwane migrated from rural or semi-urban areas to seek for employment opportunities in the city which result to unplanned urban migration, and as a result the city is poorly service. The infrastructure is old and incurs high operating costs and lost revenue. Development outcomes and measurable impacts • 16 057 households currently receiving intermittent water services to benefit from reliable water services • 67.7 km of replacement AC pipes Polokwane CBD • 45.6 km of replacement AC pipes in Seshego • 17.4 km of replacement AC pipes in Annadale • Reduced ad-hoc repair and maintenance and employee overtime cost related to emergency attendance to frequent burst pipes • Reduction in water losses • Positive impact on the economy • Potential creation of employment



Ebara Pumps South Africa EBARA South Africa is based In Johannesburg and opened its doors to Africa in August 2017, a branch of Ebara Europe. The headquarters, Ebara Corporation was established in 1912 in Japan. EBARA understands water is a vital commodity for sustaining life, every person has the right to clean water. Our technology is in high demand in developing countries where meeting water needs can be challenging due to limited water resources and power supply. EBARA provides simple pressure booster systems for the domestic sector and more. Our goal is to remain at the forefront of technology with the philosophy of integrating three essential concepts as cornerstones in the development of our products: quality, innovation and cutting edge solutions that blend to elevate the quality of modern society. We proud ourselves with our EVMS multistage pump with the innovative design of the Shurricane impeller, this is an EBARA patent, the design reduces axial thrust enabling one to use any standard motor. Drainage and Wastewater Wastewater has to be disposed of in a reliable way in order to meet regulatory standards. EBARA pumps and lifting units guarantee an effective purification with highly reliable systems, both for small household applications and large industrial installations. Water Supply Municipal/Residential water works, agriculture and irrigation, pressure boosting water distribution and treatment is the basic condition for human life, from civil application to use for agriculture. EBARA strives to maintain efficiency while respecting the environment. Industry EBARA offers a wide range of solutions thanks to the extensive experience in the business of electric pumps, developed for more than 100 years, and to the great knowledge of the performance and specifications of stainless steel, a material that perfectly fit various industrial applications. Added to this, the company is able to adapt its solutions to different needs, creating a wide range of â&#x20AC;&#x153;tailoredâ&#x20AC;? products and ensuring to customers not only a product, but most of all a pumping system and an efficient and reliable service. EBARA SA has distributors in Namibia, Botswana, Swaziland, Zimbabwe and continue to expand.



Sembcorp Project Established in 1998, liquid storage solution provider for multiple applications SBS Water Systems, manufacturer of SBS Tanks, celebrated its twentieth year in existence. The SBS range of tanks has been engineered, designed and developed from over 20 years’ practical experience in the water storage industry and continues to improve from strength to strength. As the preferred liquid storage solution in the South African Mining, Municipal, Fixed Fire Protection, Water Conservation and Food & Beverage Industries. SBS Tanks supplied water treatment tanks to water service provider Sembcorp Siza Water in 2017. The water treatment facility based in Ballito, north of Durban, in KwaZulu-Natal, handles 27.3 Mℓ/d of water and uses high-quality biotechnology to treat the sewage and effluent. Sembcorp Siza Water recycles most of the region’s wastewater into drinkable water that achieves “Blue Drop Status”, the regulatory tool used by the Department of Water Affairs to monitor drinking water quality. Following a major upgrade to the Sembcorp treatment plant, the facility needed new water reservoirs installed urgently. SBS Tanks was able to provide a temporary one-million litre storage tank within four days. Eight weeks later, the company installed one 3.3-million litre water storage tank and one 2-million litre storage tank that would store the recycled and treated potable water. The installed tanks meet global industry standards and the highest international trade quality ratings. According to Fabio Grendele Operations Manager, projects like these make SBS Tanks such a significant player in the water storage industry, not only in sub-Saharan Africa but also across the world. SBS Tanks® prides itself in the meaningful impact their product can make when used for rainwater harvesting, desalination and water treatment. The solution is highly sustainable in both public and private sectors. So far, they’ve installed systems at a number of companies and schools in KwaZulu-Natal, who benefit from saving water.


The Validation and Verification of Existing Lawful Water use in the Usuthu Catchment of the Inkomati-Usuthu Water Management Area The validation and verification of existing water use enables the transition of water use entitlements from the previous Water Act of 1956, to the National Water Act (NWA), Act 36 of 1998. An important consequence of the verification process is the identification of illegal and unauthorised water use in the project area. It is important to note that the process of validation and verification is not a mechanism to reduce or limit water use, but rather to recognise and confirm legally utilised extents in terms of Section 35 of the NWA. Sections 32 to 35 of the NWA describes Existing Lawful Water Use in terms of the legal definition and the role of the responsible authority in its determination. The Inkomati-Usuthu Catchment Management Agency (IUCMA) commenced this project early in 2017. The project area is the Usuthu part of the Inkomati-Usuthu Water Management Area. The initial

Figure 1


Validation Phase of the project compiled most of the required data for the commencement of the administrative and legal process of water use verification in terms of Sections 35 of the NWA. This data includes the results of remote sensing classifications, water use modelling extents and the analysis of the legal extent of water use entitlements. A number of data products were developed to facilitate the use and application of the derived information. These include GIS based map books (see Figure 1) to utilise spatial data, a property based database and water use modelling applications. The Validation Phase was completed at the end of May 2018. An important enabler of the project was the provision of delegations in terms of Section 35 of the NWA to the IUCMA in July 2018, by the Acting Director General and Minister of Water and Sanitation. This gives the IUCMA


the authority to carry out the full verification process for water use within its area of operation. Figure 1: Water use validation GIS map The second main phase of the project, Verification, is conducted on the following water uses, as defined in the NWA: • • •

Taking (abstraction) in terms of Section 21(a) of the NWA (for Irrigation, domestic and Industrial/Mining Uses) Storing of water in terms of Section 21(b) of the NWA Engaging in a Stream Flow Reduction Activity (SFRA) in terms of Section 21(d) of the NWA

The Validation Phase is primarily a technical process and is done internally between the IUCMA and the appointed proffesional service provider. The Verification Phase requires inputs from water users, and therefore a program of public participation is carried out for affected parties.

and ownership changes but also changes to property boundaries. On conclusion of the verification process, the water user’s registration information will be updated to reflect any changes and to reflect the lawfulness status of the water use. The administrative and legal review process, in terms of Section 35 of the NWA, will commence during December 2018. This involves the distribution of Section 35 application letters (containing proposed extents of existing lawful water use), review of water user input and final determinations. The project will affect around 1 300 properties in the Usuthu part of the Inkomati-Usuthu Water Management Area.

The public participation program was conducted in late November 2018, in order to ensure that water users and stakeholders are given the opportunity to participate in and be informed about the project.

The success of this project will result in significant benefits to both water users and the IUCMA. Some of these benefits include: • Legal certification of the extent of existing lawful water use on identified properties. • The identification of unlawful use in the project area. • Ensures water use registration details are updated and accurate, to enable correct application of water use charges. • Improved management of local water resources.

Apart from establishing lawful water use extents, the project will update a significant number of water user registration details. These updates include not only contact

Further information on validation and verification and the Usuthu Project is available on the IUCMA website: www.iucma.co.za


Wamechsi Group standardises on SEW geared motors for its wastewater-treatment equipment Industrial Gear Units and Geared Motors from SEW-EURODRIVE South Africa are ideal for demanding applications such as agitators, mixers, and aerators. Local Original Equipment Manufacturer (OEM) Wamechsi Group has standardised on SEW products for a range of wastewater-treatment plants it has built throughout the country. This is largely due to the quality and reliability of the SEW technology. The OEM manufactures a range of mechanical equipment for the various stages of the treatment process at a wastewatertreatment plant. This includes mechanical screens, washers, and screw presses that wash and compact the material that is removed. Ancillary mechanical equipment includes screw pumps, surface aerators, and clarifiers. Manufacturing equipment for thickening and dewatering applications is a particular area of expertise for Wamechsi Group, CEO Jurie Niemand explains. “We supply turnkey installations, in addition to consulting and aftersales services.” Established in 1997, Wamechsi Group has transformed into the largest OEM of its kind in South Africa at present. Its extensive manufacturing capability includes state-of-the-art laser and plasma cutting, CNC lathes and milling machines, submerged-arc and robotic welding, and ancillary equipment such as twenty-four 5 t overhead cranes. The OEM acquired its first SEW products in 2012, a long-standing partnership predicated on good design, reliability, quality, and excellent aftermarket support and service, Niemand comments. The OEM’s latest projects to feature SEW products are Virginia Phase Two (six 75 kW Industrial Gear Units specifically for aerators), an additional 22 geared motors for Theronia, and 15 geared motors for mixers at Buschkoppies. Phase One of the Virginia project has already been completed, while Phase Two is being commissioned.

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SEW Sales Representative Willem Strydom “The main reason that we have been so successful in this industry to date is largely due to our innovation and SEW’s reliable product range,” Niemand explains. SEW Sales Representative Willem Strydom elaborates that SEW’s extensive experience and track record in the wastewatertreatment industry means it is able to offer flexible and highly-reliable total solutions. It is a leading manufacturer of Industrial Gear Units and geared motors, in addition to a large range of optional equipment, which ensures reliable drive solutions for the wastewater-treatment industry. Industrial Gear Units from SEW are ideal for applications where a high performance level is required for mixing and agitating liquid or paste-type substances. Apart from wastewater treatment, these also include chemicals, food-and-beverage, and mining. With its flexible product platform, SEW offers a load-specific bearing concept. In addition to the transmitted torque, high radial or axial forces are often supported by the output shaft. No matter whether the process is horizontal or vertical, SEW has the expertise to be able to provide the optimal solution. “With aerator and mixing applications, our projects and engineering teams have to double check all of the loads and bending moments. These loads are supplied to us by the client, based on their designs. We then

ensure that the gearboxes selected are suited to the application at hand,” Strydom highlights. Commenting on the current state of the wastewater-treatment industry, Niemand stresses it is growing exponentially due to the rapid population expansion and high rate of urbanisation. “The need for infrastructure is coupled to the universal right to access water and sanitation services, which commits the government to significant capex in these sectors.” A major challenge in this regard is that South Africa is classified officially as a water-stressed country, which means that this valuable resource has to be conserved as much as possible. “We are now busy with projects where final effluent is being treated to become potable water. Therefore it is critical for our major component suppliers like SEW to be at the cutting edge of technology,” Niemand points out. “The wastewater-treatment industry not only generates much-needed employment, but is essential for continued economic development, as the country’s residential needs cannot be met without this essential enabling infrastructure being put in place first,” Niemand concludes. Connect with SEW-EURODRIVE on Facebook to receive the company’s latest news: www.facebook.com/SEWEurodriveSA




Vovani Water Products ( VWP) has recently been involved in the momentous wastewater-to-drinking-water filtration system installation at the Old Mutual Campus in Cape Town, supplying reverse osmosis (RO) pressure vessels and RO membranes. The project has taken Old Mutual off the ‘ water grid’ in a severely water-strained city, with the company har vesting around 650 cubic litres of clean water a day by purifying wastewater‚ primarily from sewage. This is set to save the City of Cape Town around 15‚000 kilolitres of water a month. Being the first South African corporate to implement such a project, Vovani Water Products was chosen as the preferred supplier of RO treatment products for the filtration project, which formed par t of the greater wastewater treatment solution. The RO fiberglass reinforced product pressure vessels are manufactured by ROPV, and the RO membrane elements manufactured by LG Chem. The RO membranes supplied by VWP are used in the final step of wastewater filtration to reduce the levels of dissolved minerals in the feed stream to an acceptable level for SANS drinking standards. By installing this wastewater treatment solution, a sustainable way has been implemented to reuse wastewater and reduce the water required from the local municipality. With South Africa facing increasing constraints, including overexploitation of fresh and clean water supply and continued pollution of natural water sources, the roll-out of such projects could become a greater reality in the countr y to create a positive impact on broader socio-economic and environmental issues, in the near future. Vovani Water Products also offers other water-related technologies such as ultrafiltration, nanofiltration, ultraviolet, ozone and many more, aimed at assisting the treatment of groundwater, rainwater and greywater. This ensures sustained water security and a sustainable clean water supply.

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+27 10 140 3773 w w w. v o v a n i . c o . z a


Hydromine Projects Hydromine Projects and Marketing (PTY) LTD is a 51% Black owned entity and is diversifying its range of products to include test and measurement equipment, a new range of automated valves and systems, condition monitoring field services and diagnostic intruments. We are official distributors of the All Test Pro range of motor testing equipment and Fluke instruments, our historical scope of supply has been improved towards a more comprehensive turnkey solution for end users. Although we are constantly improving our competency and experience of providing fluid handling system solutions, a move towards electronics, test and measurement as well as automation is preparing us for a big year in 2019. This year we are focussing on system efficiency and reduction of production loss which is precisely where the All Test Pro range of products enter the picture. Historically, it has been valuable for end users to establish the condition of their mechanical equipment in an efoort to try and prevent unplanned production loss caused by unexpected equipment failure. All Test Pro can now offer a more extensive look at the equipment on your plant by including the Electric motors that are driving your rotating equipment. A comprehensive range of options for De-energized (Offline) as well as Energized (Online) testing instruments is available depending on your specific requirements and budgets. These amazingly powerful field test instruments are able to uncover developing winding faults, loose connections, contamination issues, rotor eccentricity, motor loads and efficiency tests as well as perform power quality analysis between the various test methods. They are all portable, practical, rechargeable batter powered and can be used with various software options to assist with creating reports and interpreting the data collected to find relevant faults and unbalance between the phases of the motors. Single phase and DC motors can be trended over time or compared with selected bench mark motors of the same configuration to establish the health of the motors. Should you have any queries, please do not hesitate to contact us on sales@hmpm.co.za or gavin@hmpm.co.za for further information. All test pro products can be viewed at www.alltestpro.com/products.



Technical Review Index











Ultra Vaves




Tupelovox Tupelovox Pty Ltd is South Africa official Distributor of BioMicrobics Technologies. Community Wastewater Treatment Systems are used in areas or buildings where there may or may not be infrastructure available. These systems have performed exceptionally well in achieving the new higher levels of nitrogen removal, achieve net-zero water, and optimal effluent quality with automated, energy efficiency that is required today. Sewage through the building’s plumbing line is conveyed to the WasteWater Treatment Plant (WWTP) by either gravity (STEG) or pump tank (STEP, capable of pumping under pressure ¾” [2 cm] solids). The versatile, effluent prescreening/pretreatment devices, such as SaniTEE® and BioSTEP® devices, filters the solids down to 1/8th” [0.3 cm] and transfer the screened liquids to the wastewater treatment system, such as MicroFAST or MyFAST System. Each pre-packaged BioSTEP combines proven, low-maintenance components with unique, engineered features to create an innovative solution in numerous small-diameter, decentralized collection applications. All BioSTEP Systems are available as individual components or preassembled in ready-to-install System Packages. The Filtered Pump Vaults incorporates the patented, slotted filter screen with swabbing handles and integral ScumGuard® to provide the submersible pump with critical protection from large solids and laden scum, allowing for an easy clean-in-place maintenance and quick servicing. The screened wastewater then flows to a treatment plant, such as the BioMicrobics FAST® HS-STP® (high strength sewage treatment plant). In the FAST® process, a colony of bacteria called biomass breaks down biodegradable waste into carbon dioxide and water. Solid material that the biomass cannot process and bacteria that die settle in the bottom of the tank for normal pump-out removal. The FAST® process consists of the treatment tank and the air pump (air source). The air pump provides continuous air to the treatment tank through the air supply pipe. The air supply pipe combines with the draft tube to create an airlift. This airlift is the means by which air and wastewater are mixed within the tank. The airlift assembly lifts the wastewater to the splash plate. The wastewater is cascaded off the splash plate across the surface of the honeycomb plastic media. The honeycomb plastic media is the heart of the FAST® process and is suspended in the wastewater. The media contains the biomass, the colony of bacteria that stabilizes the wastewater. By growing on the honeycomb media and receiving food and air necessary for growth from the airlift, the biomass allowed to eat (stabilize) the waste before it discharged to the drain field or other dispersal site. The FAST® wastewater treatment system will function normally even when wastewater does not enter the system for extended period of time. The power to the system should be left on during short periods when there is no wastewater flow the system. The FAST® wastewater treatment system operates automatically and continuously. The maintenance procedures for the user of the FAST® system include keeping the vents and the blower housing clean of debris.



WIKA constructs Parshall flume By Dave Lincoln, WIKA Instruments (Pty) Ltd Open Channel Flow is defined as flow in any channel in which the liquid flows with a free surface. Examples include rivers and irrigation channels. Certain closed channels such as sewers, when flowing partially full and not under pressure, are also classified as open channels.

A frame has been attached to the walls of the flume positioning the level probe in the correct position. The frame serves a second purpose: to provide the capability to check the zero and range calibration of the flow meter while there is flow through the flume.

Figure 2 – The stainless steel structure of the flume Figure 1 – Schematic layout of a flume in a river channel.

A flume is a specially shaped open channel flow section providing a restriction in channel area (Figure 1). The flow rate in the channel is determined by measuring the liquid depth at a specified point in the flume. Common materials of construction are stainless steel, fiberglass and concrete. Similar measurements can be made with other flow restricting devices , however, flumes result in a lower head loss and are inherently self-cleaning. A flow meter is used in conjunction with the flume to measure the rate of flow in the open channel. WIKA recently received an order to supply 3-inch and 9-inch Parshall flumes constructed from 2mm 316L Stainless Steel. The flumes will be installed at the NCP Chlorchem site to measure exit effluent flow into the Jukskei River.

The straps across the top of the flume (Figure 2) are for structural support during installation only. Once the concrete has cured these straps will be removed. Parshall Flumes can be favourably installed in the following applications: • Sewage works: Because of the self- cleaning effect, no debris is collected on the side walls. • Factory-treated effluent discharge into rivers. • Measurement of irrigation water in open channels to predefined areas. • Discharge waters from purification plants. WIKA Instruments (Pty) Ltd Chilvers Street, Denver, Johannesburg SOUTH AFRICA Tel +27 11 621 0000 • Fax +27 11 621 0060 sales.za@wika.com • www.wika.co.za



Water Care Solutions for Effective Aquatic Plant Control

tic Plant Control

eco-system, aquatic vegetation in ys an important role and can even be n this balance is disturbed by eg. evels in the water, aquatic vegetation nuisance levels. Unmanaged aquatic bstruct general water movement that systems, interferes with recreational oses additional steps to treat water to s. Lonza Water Care understands uatic vegetation goes hand-in-hand ater and therefore offers a range of ns to treat various aquatic plant

In a balanced eco-system, aquatic vegetation in surface water plays an important role and can even be desirable. When this balance is disturbed by eg. elevated nutrient levels in the water, aquatic vegetation Water Care plant growth can easily reach nuisance levels. Unmanaged aquatic can obstruct general water movement that impacts irrigation systems, Water Care Solutions for Eff interferes with recreational activities and imposes additional steps to treat water to potable standards. Lonza Water Care understands that managing aquatic vegetation goes hand-in-hand with managing water and therefore offers a range of chemical solutions to treat various aquatic plant problems.

Cutrine-Plus™ Algaecides A copper based algaecide effective against filamentous and planktonic algae as well as rooted plants such as Hydrilla. Cutrine-Plus™ is available in liquid and granular form and can be applied in various water bodies ™ Algaecides such as dams, potable water reservoirs, ponds, fish hatcheries and irrigation systems.

gaecide effective against filamentous gae as well as rooted plants Products such as Biological ne-Plus™ is available in liquid and ® d can be appliedBacti-Klear in various Aquatic water Microbial Blend is a formulation of beneficial bacteria that decreases levels of organic in orderponds, to improve clarity and reduce odors in dams and ponds. This product is available in a solid pellet ms, potable watermatter reservoirs, d irrigation systems. form that is easy to dose and can be applied in the presence of fish and other aquatic animals.

Biological Products

Bacti-Klear® Aquatic Microbial Blend is a formul

matter in to order to improve clarity and reduce odo Aqua-Prep® Protein Solution is a scientific blend of fermented proteins with surfactants designed increase

pellet form that is easy to dose and can be appli

the efficiency of resident bacteria present in water bodies. This increases the ability of Aqua-Prep these bacteria to ® Protein Solution is a scientific bl increase the efficiency of resident bacteria pre teria that decreases levels oforganic organic metabolize sediment in the bottom of dams and ponds.

s. This product is available in a solid fish and other aquatic animals.

Aquashadow® Black Pond Colorant

oteins with surfactants designed to Aquashadow® Black Pond Colorant is a solution created to This increases the ability of these beautify cloudy water with a pleasing mirror-like appearance. onds.

This product is ideal for use in decorative water bodies located on golf courses, holiday resorts or theme parks. Contact our Sales Office for more information regarding our Surface Water Product Range and its application.

bacteria to metabolize organic sediment in the b

Aquashadow® Black Pond Colorant

Aquashadow ® Black Pond Colorant is a solution created to beautify cloudy water with a pleasing mirror-like appearance. This product is ideal fo use in decorative water bodies located on gol courses, holiday resorts or theme parks.

Contact our Sales Office for more information regarding our Surface Water Product Range and its application.

Lonza Water Care

Tel: +27 11 393 9000

Lonza Water Care Tel: +27 11 393 9000 • E-mail: sa.icm@lonza.com • www.lonzawatertreatment.co.za


E-mail: sa.ic


ogy Innovative hydrotechnology for a dry landscape

r of crippling water inadequacy South African to cities are buckling under the specter of crippling water inadequacy ater sources. Our response and the ever-increasing demand for alternative water sources. Our response to storage and reticulation of this the designed detection,to exploitation, purification, packaging, storage and reticulation of array of systems this increasingly valuable resource has resulted in an array of systems designed to e, short or long-term needs.

exacting standards and able to respond to immediate, short or long-term needs.

NG SMALL PUMPING SYSTEMS mobile and static water packaging Containerised and all-inclusive small pump comprising bottling and sachet systems allow the transfer of surface and n, form part of the product base groundwaters with diesel-driven self-priming he offering of a complete and centrifugal pumps, enabling the use of the ensive water solution. Designed to y simplify the achievement of potable downstream storage and purification systems. ater to a varied market, the high Able to deliver surface or seawater at a rate in T bottles are produced, sterilised, excess of 20 000 l/h @ 20m head, and at max ped and labeled within a hermetically oduction facility. NPSH of 2.8m.

GE LARGE PUMPING SYSTEMS orting and bladder tanks in a variety Similarly containerised but vastly higher duty inations further allow the pumping, diesel-driven pumps are able to transfer nd treatment of any water source 40 000l/h ation to be undertaken. Tanks at area head of 80m. 100mm discharge hoses and with fastenable covers, ground150mm rigid suction hoses are all d suitable porting for any application. compactly contained in the stackable and

easily transportable holders.

SS ENHANCEMENT UF-RO MEMBRANE PURIFIER o optimise and allow pragmatic mobile and static membrane for any conceivableUltra-modern water treatment systems, compactly designed and offering processes such as DAF, multi media flocculation, coagulation, hybridchlorination, molecular weight cut-offs enable us to remin, GAC, PAC, Greensand, grey further purify any problematic feedstock, be it d rain harvesting are all available for organically contaminated bore hole or surface nhancement.

waters, seawater, rivers or dams.

information visit www.malutsa.co.za ULTRAVIOLET IRRADIATION t us at +27 (0) 21Â 864 2620.

Fast-acting UV light triggers an almost instantaneous disinfection without the creation of harmful by-products, rendering it an environmentally responsible complementing technology to any water-stressed client base.

BOTTLING Modular, mobile and static water packaging systems, comprising bottling and sachet production, form part of the product base enabling the offering of a complete and comprehensive water solution. Designed to logistically simplify the achievement of potable bottled water to a varied market, the high quality PET bottles are produced, sterilised, filled, capped and labeled within a hermetically sealed production facility. STORAGE Self-supporting and bladder tanks in a variety of denominations further allow the pumping, storage and treatment of any water source at any location to be undertaken. Tanks are equipped with fastenable covers, ground sheets and suitable porting for any application. PROCESS ENHANCEMENT In order to optimise and allow pragmatic solutions for any conceivable water treatment scenario, processes such as DAF, multi media filtration, flocculation, coagulation, chlorination, IX, demin, remin, GAC, PAC, Greensand, grey water and rain harvesting are all available for system enhancement. For more information visit www.malutsa.co.za or contact us at +27 (0) 21 864 2620.



Membrane Bioreactor (MBR) Membrane Bioreactors (MBR) are treatment processes, which integrate a semi-permeable membrane with a biological process. It is the combination of a membrane process like microfiltration or ultrafiltration with a suspended growth bioreactor, and is now widely used for municipal and industrial wastewater treatment.


The single-header ultrafiltration PURON® membrane bioreactor changed industrial and municipal wastewater treatment. This patented module features reinforced PVDF hollow fibers that are fixed only at the bottom, virtually eliminating the clogging build-up of hair, fibrous materials and sludge solids. Solids and particulates, including bacteria, remain on the outside, while permeate is drawn through the membrane to the inside of the fibers. The aeration nozzle is centered in the fiber bundle to scour the entire fiber length, minimizing power consumption.

PULSION® MBR The next generation of PURON® MBR, PULSION® MBR offer up to 40% aeration energy reduction and 25% footprint reduction. This innovation pulses a large bubble though a chambered fiber bundle, creating pistonlike pumping action that results in lower air and aeration energy requirements than traditional scouring methods. Improved recirculation of mixed liquor in the membrane module boasts achievable fluxes and overall performance. Optimized design and layout has reduced tank sizing while eliminating the need for air cycle valves. A minimized continuous air flow applied to the membranes has decreased the size of air delivery equipment by 50%, also reducing operation costs.

Systems Information PURON® PLUS MBR systems, featuring our submerged PULSION® MBR modules, are pre-engineered membrane bioreactor (MBR) package plants. With capacities ranging up to 250,000 GPD, they are designed for both municipal and industrial wastewater applications, including food, dairy, beverage, leachate and produced water. These skid-mounted systems offer a complete and cost-effective design. The virtually unbreakable high-performance PURON® membrane provides consistently high-quality effluent. Coupled with a comprehensive biological system, the PURON PLUS® MBR system can reduce BOD and nitrogen concentrations down to 5 and 10 mg/L respectively.

Sagisa Process Engineering (Pty) Ltd Tel: +27 11 787 0355 Email: sagisa@sagisa.com Web: www.sagisa.com 94


Water-loss savings in pipelines New technologies from Ultra Control Valves provide proven results for utilities.


ith water scarcity facing users worldwide, water utilities should be proactive in ensuring that pipe leaks are reduced and kept to an absolute minimum. One of the ‘fast return’ innovations that has been implemented by some municipalities and water boards is pressure management. This entails reducing pressures in networks during low-demand periods (to reduce losses from leaks). The process involves electronic equipment connected to pilot-operated pressure reducing valves (POPRVs), which ‘reset’ pressures to different levels for different flow rates. The problem with this strategy in the South African context is that POPRVs are complicated and poorly understood (or maintained) by operators. The addition of electronic controllers makes these valves even more complicated and less user-friendly.

Ratioreducing pressurereducing valves (RRPRVs)

Simple and effective alternative Ultra Control Valves has entered the market with some very new and simple innovations, which are starting to capture the imagination of users as tremendous water-saving devices. “These valves reduce pressures in a ratio (2:1, 3:1, 4:1, 5:1) and have no adjustments that can easily be tampered with,” explains Peter Telle, head, Ultra Control Valves. “They are also much easier to apply in the field, as they do not have delayed reaction times, low-flow instability or vulnerability to dirt: just a simple piston activated by line pressure, which will always keep the ratio between inlet and outlet pressure at a constant value.” Telle says that, with POPRVs, one has to be very careful that the valve is sized correctly to handle low flows, or install valves in series to overcome cavitation damage, all increasing the complexity of the installation and increasing the chances of malfunction. In a lot of POPRV installations, valves become unstable at low flows (at night), causing pipe breaks and leading to huge water losses, exactly the opposite result to what the valve is intended for. The installation of ratio-reducing pressure-reducing valves (RRPRVs) is a lot simpler and does not require much engineering or maintenance – truly, an African solution to keeping pressures low without the accompanying complexities. Ultra Control Valves also represents Australian valve specialist Maric, whose valves control flow in a very simple manner. Since its development, this innovative product has been used to control flow in many applications over the past 40 years. “This valve is completely tamperproof and absolutely ideal for African conditions, where simplicity and robustness are key and maintenance is seldom done,” Telle points out. In the right applications, such as consumer end-points like taps, showers, and standpipes in rural water areas, this valve will ensure tremendous water consumption savings, as is the case for all water supply networks. By placing Maric flow controllers in strategic positions, flows are limited to what is the norm for such a network. If this causes pressure drops to the extent where users complain, it indicates that consumption is too high due to pipe leaks, which then need to be repaired. The above products provide pressure and flow control with absolute simplicity, which plays an important role in ensuring correct operation. The end result is huge savings in water losses.


Maric flow-control valves



COMPANY CSIR NCPC Development Bank of Souther Africa (DBSA)

PAGE 76-77 48-49; 78-79

Ebara Pumps SA

4; 80

Hach SA


Hydromine Projects Inkomati-Usuthu Catchment Managment Agency Lonza Water Treatment

33; 87 11-12; 82-83 25; 92

Malutsa (Pty) Ltd

6; 93

Monash University

12; 75

Ngage - SEW Eurodrive

55; 84-85

OMD - Woolworths (Pty) Ltd

IFC; 1

SBS Tanks

39; 81


73; 94

Sensus Water South Africa

88, IBC


23; 90

Ultra Valves

2; 95

Vovani Water Products

65; 86

WIKA Instruments (Pty) Ltd

67; 91

Profile for Green Economy Media

The Sustainable Water Resource Handbook v9  

The Sustainable Water Resource Handbook v9  


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