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ISSUE 6 •  2013

The importance of

Earthing Land Art

An Ideal Home:

SustaInia

Awards Galore

Plastics|SA survey

Wunder Kids

1 SG


10 l 20 enta nm sm iro nali v En our ard J Aw er nn Wi

News

18

08 General 69 Building 80 Energy 82 Motoring 190 Conservation

47 Sustania Awards 56 SAIA Sustainable Architecture 84 ICFF Design Awards 2013 118 Nedbank Green Wine Awards 132 Eskom Young Scientists 174 SAPRO & PETCO

Awards

Environment 18 Fracktivism 28 Earthing

simply Leading the eco-lifestyle www.simplygreen.co.za • admin@simplygreen.co.za Cape Town Office • P O Box 30946, Tokai, 7966 Tel 27 (0) 21 713 0018 or 27 (0) 21 712 4665 082 579 7915 • Fax 27 (0) 21 715 2809

DIGIMAG

12 Ecologic Awards 14 Index Awards

SG 2

82

Photo http://occupythepipeline.blogspot.com

Inside

ican Afr ited uth Lim e So ies Th er Brew

34 Land Art 63 PwC global Power &  Utilities Survey 75 Locking the Leak 115 Sustainable Fishing

Home & Buildings 40 Sustainia 50 The Crystal 54 Europa City

Publisher & Executive Editor Chris Erasmus publisher@simplygreen.co.za Consulting Editor Nicole Sherwin editor@simplygreen.co.za Creative Director Silke Erasmus admin@simplygreen.co.za

National Sales Consultants Kyle Villet kyle@simplygreen.co.za Tamzen Scoulelis adverts@simplygreen.co.za Studio Manager Kevin Rule

Assistant Editor Lenard Roos studio1@simplygreen.co.za

studio2@simplygreen.co.za


84

Volume 6 No.6 •

Jade Holing

134

Issue 6 • 2013

69 90 Vinyl Flooring 94 Home Improvement 100 Pest Control 104 Allergies

Energy 67 Office Energy Efficiency 72 Mandela Bay  Municipality

Getaways 137 De Hoop  Nature Reserve 142 The Ultimate  Green Lodge 148 Bartholomeus Klip

Garden

34 160 Nampak Bird Crate 170 Rainwater Harvesting

Plastics & you 182 Beach Clean-Up 186 Plastics SA Recycling

Regulars 110 Hot off the press 127 Eco-Apps 140 Eco-experiment 144 On Safari 170 Book reviews

155 Birding 162 Jane Griffiths

House GS Publishing Green Spaces Publishing House

Webmaster Garry Doel web@simplygreen.co.za

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HOUSE

Copyright Simply Green is a registered trademark and is copyright protected worldwide. Material

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Disclaimer

published in Simply Green, including all

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Opinions expressed in this magazine are not

artwork, may not be reproduced without

necessarily those of the publishers or staff.

the permission of the editor.

Accounts Tracy Lee Nash

ISSN 1998-1309

accounts@simplygreen.co.za Green Spaces.indd 1

2/20/2008 3:51:48 PM

SOUTH AFRICA'S ENVIRONMENTAL CAMPAIGN www.indaloyethu.co.za

Flagship Member

3 SG


PUBLISHEr's VIEW SG 4

7th Generational Thinking The most recent Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) report having been recently published, we can see that the trend towards a much warmer, more climatically-disturbed near future, long-since predicted, continues apace. Much has been made in denialist camps (especially those

associated with carbon-producing big business in the US and elsewhere) of the IPCC's 2007 'error' at the rate of Himalayan glacial melt-off, which was then predicted to leave the Himalayas ice-free (at least in summer months) by 2035. Also, denialists point to the fact that global atmospheric temperatures have not risen by quite as much in the last 10 years as once expected. However, these criticisms are cherry-picked from a mass of other data which not only supports the overall view of the IPCC's 2007 report, plus those preceding it, but also shows that in some respects earlier predictions were, on the whole, overly conservative. So, for example, global sea water temperatures continue to rise – admittedly by only a tiny amount on average, but by quite a lot (7°F or nearly 4°C) in the Arctic. Routinely, now, Arctic summer sea ice area is diminishing each year, almost vanishing over vast areas once impassable year-round. This fact is far more important than atmospheric temperatures as a measure of how much the earth, as a whole, is warming since the oceans operate as a heat sink for the planet. Although surface temperatures in much of the world's oceans are barely warmer, on average, than they have been in the past, the wide spread of oceanic temperatures between summer and winter – emphasised the further from the equator one goes – indicates that a fundamental shift is underway, and rapidly so. Additionally, such studies as have been made show that although water at the very top level of the oceans is only marginally warmer, the warming goes down deeper than previously thought. Which is to say that the volume of warmer water on our planet is increasing significantly, embodying much more warming energy than a mere surface measure might indicate. While the Himalayan glacial melt rate might have been off in the IPCC's 2007 report, other regions, such as Greenland, are experiencing some glacial melt-off at a much higher rate than was expected. Since 2007, research in Greenland has shown that vast land-based glacial systems are being heavily undermined in summer months when more surface water is forming than previously. This surface water absorbs more heat than the energy-reflecting ice sheets on which they lie. In turn, this drives the formation of moulins, which are holes that develop in glaciers and which, it has recently been proven, cut right down to the bedrock beneath glaciers. The surface water, having made its way down to bedrock, flows under the glaciers, lubricating their flow towards the sea. This phenomenon explains why some glaciers are moving much faster than previously measured and/or thought. Then there is the issue of increasing sea levels. Each year, a vast volume of water is taken up out of the oceans and dumped as snow and ice in high latitudes or on high-elevation regions. That frozen water becomes the body of glaciers. The issue is, overall, that while global warming is uplifting more water vapour into the atmosphere because sea temperatures at or near the equatorial zones is higher, along with higher atmospheric temperatures, more ice is melting off, on average, around the globe each year than is being deposited. The net result is rising sea levels, on an annualised, global average basis. Also, warmer water takes up more space than the same amount of cooler water does, driving sea levels up yet more. The rise in sea levels remains, at this time, still quite small – but already the impacts are being felt, along with the other elements of climate change as driven by global warming, in the form of more severe and more frequent extreme weather events. It doesn't take a genius – or even the confirming data of the IPCC – to figure out where that will take us, sooner or later. Indeed, the latest IPCC report shows, almost now beyond sensible debate, that not only is global warming real, but that it is inextricably linked to rising CO2 levels in the atmosphere and that this process is almost certainly (at least 95% likely) being heavily contributed to by human carbon and other greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions.


With all these linkages reconfirmed with yet higher degrees of certainty, the issue is less about the mechanism than the timing. In short, how quickly will we get to 2°C warmer average global temperature than we are at today? Will that be towards the end of this century, as many of a more conservative mindset would argue? Or perhaps, as some suspect, that limit will be reached much sooner – possibly within 50 years or so. If the former, we still have a little time to rein in and hopefully halt our GHG emissions. If the latter, it may already be very close to being too late to do very much at all to prevent the planet going beyond what is considered the 'safe' level of warming (2°C). If that is the case, given the amount of GHGs floating around already, and the likelihood that it will be some time yet before significant reductions in emissions will be apparent, the decades-long lag effect that follows the atmospheric release of CO2 and methane – the two most significant GHG agents – means that we will likely go well beyond 2°C warmer, edging relentlessly towards 3-4°C. Should that happen, in turn, it then becomes probable that feedback loops, such as are fundamental in complex climate systems, will kick in. One such is the annual thaw of once permanently frozen lands in the far north of Europe, North America and Asia. In this permafrost (which is increasingly not frozen, as its name implies, each Northern Hemisphere summer) lurks literally billions of tons of methane. The mass release of this powerful GHG gas through ongoing thawing would spell our collective doom, should this feedback loop go into runaway mode, as seems probable in a 4°C warmer world. That, then, leads rapidly to a 5-6°C warmer planet earth scenario – and then it's really a toss up if we, along with many other species, have what it takes not merely to survive as individuals, but as a species. A lot of people roll their eyes in their heads when the debate around global warming and climate change reaches this point, and terms such as 'exaggeration' and 'alarmist' are liberally thrown around. But no-one has yet made a sensible counter-argument against this scenario, besides trying to poo-poo the rate of warming. In other words, the denialists are saying, 'Well, a bit of global warming isn't such a bad thing – it'll open up new areas of oil and gas exploration, for one thing. For another, it will make northern climes more habitable. Also the sea level rise of about 1m that's predicted (under the slow change model) isn't too bad either and can be dealt with if that happens only by the end of the 21st century. All the other stuff is "highly debatable" and we'll probably find a way to avoid the higher average global temperatures that mean real trouble anyway.' That kind of thinking doesn't sit well with us at all. If you want to talk 'pie in the sky' then this approach to global warming and climate change is just that. The fact is that we, all humans and most of the other living creatures of our planet, have a problem that's largely human created – or at least, heavily aggravated by human activity. Logically, humans can and should do something to avert the worst of what we are creating. But will we? Anyone who takes any sort of comfort from the latest IPCC report by cherry-picking the bits that suit their increasingly irrelevant and misleading arguments has to be seen as part of the denialist camp, for whatever reasons they may have. Rationally, scientifically and morally, it is not defensible ground. What can we ordinary 'small' individual human beings do in the face of all that? The answer is a lot. That is why this magazine exists in the first place – to offer reasonable, real-world alternatives that actually work and which can be implemented immediately on many levels. Companies big and small are waking up to the need to participate in changing the way we've done business and to work towards producing products that are more sustainable than their predecessors. This goes from cars to plastic bags, from floors to appliances – indeed, to just about every part of life. And we, as individual consumers, can vote with our feet and our wallets to support sustainable products and businesses so that we build a momentum of change into an irresistible tide that even the denialists will simply have to move with or be left behind. As we focus in this issue of the new phenomenon of citizen 'fracktivism' – a globalised but decentralised grassroots upwelling of anti-fracking activism – we can see that even big business can be stopped in its tracks should enough people determine that they simply won't stand for unsustainable, GHG-emitting, potentially water-toxifying activities, regardless of short-term economic imperatives. We, the people, are the answer. Not governments, not (the worst behaving) big businesses and not vague and probably vain hopes that it will all work itself out, somehow. We must be the activists who claim back our land and our natural heritage from those who would destroy and despoil what we inherited, so that we can pass this gift onto future generations. And the time to act is now, not later when the evidence is utterly overwhelming, even to the last denialist, but when also it all may be far too late to do anything meaningful to stave off what we have helped make happen. Every act can be one of activism. If we adopt the thinking of the Native American people who inspired Benjamin Franklin, author of the American Declaration of Independence and key architect of the American system of democracy, we should be thinking of the effects of our actions 'unto the seventh generation'. Simply adopting 'seventh generational thinking' will in itself bring to a halt almost all of the worst eco-excesses which currently blight our planet. Think about that the next time you make a purchase of any kind. It is the key to our power – and to helping our planet be a home capable of sustaining us and all the rest of the magnificence to which we are the collective heirs. Chris & the team

A note on stats & downloads

For those interested, we can report that our online free-to-reader model, so well supported by you good readers, is clearly working well. Our last three issues have all exceeded 75 000 reads/views and, as we go live with this issue, the preceding one had exceeded 91 000 reads/views. We encourage you to continue sharing the link to this free magazine with friends, networks, suppliers and customers, so that eco-awareness can continue to grow, based on solid facts and real-world solutions. In order to help cut down the time and cost elements involved in online information consumption, we have provided a low-res version of the magazine but also we'd encourage downloading the entire magazine in low-cost periods and then share it among friends, colleagues and associates that way. This also provides you with a quick reference source for all our information – and one which remains a click away from the internet (for videos, web links, and so on) for those with internet-connected computers and other such devices.

5 SG


Contributors Jane Griffiths is a TV producer, writer, artist and traveller who has been growing organic vegetables and herbs for more than 15 years. Her best-selling book, Jane's Delicious Garden has led to a vegetable revolution in SA, with thousands of home growers now following in her green footsteps. Her second book, Jane’s Delicious Kitchen, is a collection of delicious recipes for making the most of seasonal abundance.

page 162

Lindsay Gray is the principal of the School of Garden Design, which offers a wide range of courses in garden design and landscaping, plant identification, business skills for the green industry and training for domestic gardeners. She lives in KZN where the in-house courses are offered but travels throughout the country offering weekend short courses.

page 168

Anja Teroerde is a passionate birder with a MSc degree in ornithology from UCT. Originally from Germany, she works as an independent bird specialist mainly in the renewable energy sector.

Giulia Criscuolo qualified as a pharmacist in 1992 and worked in the pharmaceutical industry for a few years until she discovered the world of complementary medicine. Since May 2010, she assumed the role of Responsible Pharmacist at OTC Pharma head office, which involves overseeing the pharmaceutical compliance of the company to all GMP related matters. She continues to run all the training initiatives - educating and training staff, retailers and consumers

SG 6

page 154

page 104


SG Advisory Board Sean Doel is the founding editor of Simply Green. A Technical Director at WSP, specialising in contaminated land investigations and remediation. He is also passionate about what we can all do to address climate change.

Prof Bruce Hewitson is the director of the Climate System Analysis Group (CSAG) and was the co-ordinating lead author on regional climate projections for the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC).

Jeunesse Park established ProGreen, SA’s first environmental communications and public relations company, as well as Food & Trees for Africa and has won many awards.

Prof Mark Swilling is an internationally-recognised expert in sustainable development and is Academic Director of The Sustainability Institute, University of Stellenbosch.

Roger Metcalfe is a freelance journalist/ photographer specialising in the environment, technology and medicine. He is an ex-diplomat, and former TV producer and currently runs his own alternative energy business 'Solar Connect' which advises architects and developers on alternative energy designs.

Liz Eglington (Western Cape Woman Farmer of the Year for 2005/2006) owns Buffelshoek Farm, is Chairperson of Terra Madre SA and Director and Secretary of the SA Organic Sector Organisation.

Dr Pat Garratt is Managing Director of the Two Oceans Aquarium in Cape Town, currently sits on the Steering Committee of the International Aquarium Congress and is vice-chair of the International Aquarium Forum.

Cormac Cullinan is an enviro-attorney and governance expert who has worked on environmental issues in more than 20 countries and founded the specialist enviro-governance consultancy, EnAct.

OUR PLANET NEEDS YOU Calling all sustainable and green businesses

Anchor your market share and own your space in Sustainability. : @GreenExpoSA

: TheGreenExpo

www.thegreenexpo.co.za JOHANNESBURG SCC 1 - 3 NOVEMBER 2013

CAPE TOWN CTICC 29, 30 NOV - 1 DEC 2013

7 SG


N ews Man Invents 'Water Bicycle' When Judah Schiller discovered that the new portion of the Bay Bridge bike path in San Francisco would only go halfway across, he decided to adapt his own bike to get to work – on water. With previous design experience (as the co-founder of Saatchi & Saatchi S and AIKO Agency), he ordered a bike kit from an Italian manufacturer, adapted his own mountain bike and started experimenting. He has since become the first person to water bike across the San Francisco Bay and even biked across

WATCH!

the Hudson River in New York. The kit Schiller uses can fit in a backpack and consists of two inflatable pontoons, a small propeller and a mount that attaches to the bicycle. It takes about 15 minutes to set it all up and five minutes to take it down and is 'a lot more practical and enjoyable than spending an hour stuck in rush hour gridlock in a tunnel or on a bridge,' according to Schiller. The intrepid entrepreneur has set up an organisation called BayCycle to develop affordable and practical water bike kits by 2015 through an IndieGoGo campaign and hopes to help bike commuters ride on water in one of the world’s most bike-friendly cities.

International Green Talents 2013 South African Heinrich Badenhorst, a researcher for the SA Research, who chairs the initiative in carbon materials and technology at the University of Pretoria, has been selected as one of 25 winners by a high ranking jury of international experts. The focus of Badenhorst’s research is carbon and graphite materials for renewable energy capture and storage. For the fifth time the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research called on young scientists with bright ideas to apply for the prestigious Green Talents – International Forum for High Potentials in Sustainable Development. Attracted by the chance to receive unique access to the German research sector, over 430 up-and-coming scientists from 80 countries submitted their applications. Out of this impressive pool of talented researchers a high ranking jury of experts selected the 25 Green Talents awardees 2013. Badenhorst was selected as one of these. With an abundance of carbon and graphite materials in SA, Heinrich Badenhorst aims to solve two problems at once: take poor quality carbon recovered from recycled scrap tyres, and use it to capture solar energy. Badenhorst and his co-winners have been invited to Germany to visit top locations in the field of sustainability research during a two-week science forum. Here they will gain a deeper insight into the German research landscape, learn about state-of-the-art research and exchange ideas with leading experts in the context of individual appointments.

SG 8


SA climate

reality activists mark '24 Hours of Reality'

SA Climate Reality leaders, Ella Bella and Catherine Constantinides, recently marked 24 Hours of Reality at an event hosted at Tsogo Sun’s 54 on Bath. This global awareness drive, spearheaded by leading enviro-advocate, former US Vice President and Climate Reality Chairperson, Al Gore, is a global phenomenon aimed at educating the public about the true 'cost of carbon' in numerous globally pertinent situations and settings. The official event featured numerous expert-led discussions, presentations and educational sessions at numerous locations across the globe.

KUBiC's greening

WATCH THIS!

intiative in Gauteng

KUBiC's mission is to establish a sustainable green, bio-diverse, aesthetic freedom corridor along Kliprivier Drive in partnership with all stakeholders in such a manner that it will inspire others to follow suit and benefit the South of Johannesburg. This initiative is a 3-10 year process of creating one of the first major green urban corridors in Gauteng. The primary purpose of KUBiC is to enhance the visual travelling experience of the South of Johannesburg as one enters from the M1 merging with renowned conservation areas in and around the Klipriviersberg Nature Reserve. The corridor will play a vital role in the promotion of tourism in the South and will endeavour to enhance the aesthetic value, which is mostly needed in areas between Booysens and Rifle Range Roads, and as such marked the launch of this project on recently. Visit http://kubic.co.za

Elemental Iceland (Time-lapse) Stian Rekdal Photographer Stian Rekdal combined thousands of photos to create this time-lapse video showcasing Iceland's natural beauty. He spent three weeks – and more than 4800km – on the road and took more than 40 000 photos. He used about 3 500 of these to make the video.

9 SG


The Al Jawf oasis in the Sahara desert, southeast Libya

The Mississippi River Delta where the largest river in the US empties into the Gulf of Mexico

The Ganges Delta, south Asia area of Bangladesh, India

The Namib Desert

The Andes mountains, southern coast of Peru

Beautiful photographs of Earth taken from space From afar, these stunning photographs may look like scenes from an alien planet or avant-garde art pieces, but they’re actually landscapes on our Mother Earth. Curated by the European Space Agency (ESA) as part of their Observing the Earth archive, these jaw-dropping images of Earth taken from outer space are a humbling reminder of how beautiful our world is and the importance of keeping our environment intact. Updated weekly, ESA’s Observing the Earth archive consists of thousands of photographs that date back to 2005. This long-term monitoring provides an objective assessment of human activity’s global impact and even the effects of climate change. Although satellite acquisitions are often depicted as static images, they are actually comprised of layers of workable digital data. Over time, the images collected can reveal the unfolding scale of enviro-destruction and weather mapping and help contribute to environmental activism and identification of areas at risk to natural disasters.

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The real price of your electronics Most of us are never farther than arm's reach of our smartphones. We use them constantly to snap pictures and post tweets, oblivious to the sacrifices that must be made in order for billions of people around the world to have smartphones in their pockets. In the October 125th anniversary issue of National Geographic magazine, documentary photographer and filmmaker Marcus Bleasdale's stunning images pull back the curtain of our ignorance. The full spread depicts the men, women, and children who put their lives on the line, enduring horrifying conditions, in order to harvest the precious minerals needed to make each and every smartphone on the market. Captured during a 2004 visit to the war-torn Democratic Republic of Congo, Bleasdale’s images 'tell the story of the country’s mineral resource exploitation, and the demand for consumer electronics that drives it,' writes Fast Company’s Sydney Brown. Here’s an excerpt from the National Geographic piece, 'The Price of Precious', explaining more: Congo is sub-Saharan Africa’s largest country and one of its richest on paper, with an embarrassment of diamonds, gold, cobalt, copper, tin, tantalum, you name it – trillions’ worth of natural resources. But because of never-ending war, it is one of the poorest and most traumatised nations in the world. It doesn’t make any sense, until you understand that militia-controlled mines in eastern Congo have been feeding raw materials into the world’s biggest electronics and jewellery companies and at the same time feeding chaos. Turns out your laptop – or camera or gaming system or gold necklace – may have a smidgen of Congo’s pain somewhere in it. The enviro-devastation that must occur so that these minerals can be used in your electronics is mind-boggling – especially when you consider that only a fraction of these perfectly re-usable minerals are harvested from used electronics before they’re trashed. But even that pales in comparison to the

Photos Marcus Bleasdale

true revelation of how our insatiable desire for the latest and greatest technology is literally killing those who have no other option but to work in the mines. Something to consider before using the word 'need' and 'smartphone' in the same sentence ever again, unless you buy the only one made with conflict-free materials.

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A wards

2013

eco-logic

Hosted by The Enviropaedia, in association with SABC3, the event focuses on Eco-Logic – 'a mindset and value system that goes beyond products and manufacturing to include how we run our businesses; how we live in society and our communities and the application of natural law to our politics and economy', says David Parry-Davies (pictured right), editor of The Enviropaedia. The following category winners personified these values.

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Winners Water Conservation (sponsored by Rand Water) Hotel Verde – claiming the title of 'Africa’s Greenest Hotel', Hotel Verde is harvesting and saving water on all fronts.

Energy Saving (sponsored by SMA Solar Technology SA) Pick n Pay – Pick n Pay’s ambitious energy efficiency initiatives target both operational and behavioural changes and these have achieved an impressive 8.7% improvement in energy usage during the past year.

Recycling (sponsored by Collect-a-Can) greenOffice – greenABLE is an NPO that employs previously disadvantaged persons with physical disabilities to dismantle printer cartridge waste into their recyclable components. greenOffice was instrumental in the establishment of greenABLE, the first and only facility in Africa to have a recycling solution for printer cartridge waste.

Biodiversity (sponsored by Exxaro) The JNF Walter Sisulu Environmental Centre – a centre that serves as a resource of learning for the community and schools of Mamelodi. Educates and mobilises learners from schools and the broader community to actively participate in active change towards a more sustainable environment.

Climate Change (sponsored by Paarl Media)

'I am honoured to be a part of an Eco-Logic mindset that is being adopted by a growing number of individuals, businesses and organisations.' Dr John Hanks, Lifetime Achievement Award winner included: recycling, water harvesting and re-use, food gardens and fruit forests.

Eco-Angel (sponsored by ACSA) Margaret Roestorf of the Southern African Foundation for the Conservation of Coastal Birds (SANCCOB) – As CEO of SANCCOB, Margaret talks penguins, gannets, cormorants, pelicans, petrels and albatrosses. Wherever she goes in the world she warmly encourages people to support marine conservation projects that protect and conserve these precious threatened seabirds and the marine environment they depend on.

Eco-Warrior (sponsored by RISO) Jeunesse Park of Food & Trees for Africa (FTFA) – a visionary ecopreneur and change agent who started FTFA in 1990, which since then has distributed 4.2 million trees, facilitated the development of thousands of natural food gardens, several bamboo plantations and organic farms for disadvantaged communities.

Coca Cola SA – has completed building its new filling plant in Heidelberg for the water brand, Valpré. The office block achieved Gold Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design certification in 2012 and in March 2013, the production facility achieved Silver status. The plant boasts the lowest enviro-impact in Africa.

Eco-Innovation (sponsored by Standard Bank)

Municipalities (sponsored by Santam)

Eco-Community (sponsored by SABC3)

George Municipality – the municipality does not only strive to deliver excellent quality services to its residents, but to do so in a sustainable and enviro-sensitive manner.

Usizo Thuso Community Centre – The aim of Usizo Thuso Community Centre is to create a sustainable living for the people of Lawley. They develop their bio energy farmers and supporting local agro processing to ensure local economic development.

Youth (sponsored by Pick n Pay) Birches Pre-Primary Eco School – The Birches is a small Eco-school in Pinetown. Struggling financially over the years, the school made a determined effort to become enviro- and self-sustainable. The enviro-initiatives implemented at the school have

Era Architects for House Jones, 'An Island Home' – The house is a carefully designed energy efficient system to create comfort both inside and outside, harnessing its natural environment and climate. It supplies its own water and recycles all its waste.

Transport (Sponsored by Toyota) FindaLift – FindaLift encourages and enables South Africans to make better use of cars by providing simple online tools that securely matches members on similar routes, making carpooling easy to arrange. S G

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I nnovation

THINK S G 14


The INDEX: Award is one of the biggest design award events in the world and possibly the most important as it lies in the unique, over-arching theme of 'Design to Improve Life' – a concept which has established INDEX: Award as a global, inspirational design beacon. Split into five categories (Body, Home, Work, Play and Community), the award goes to designs that inspire, educate and engage people in designing sustainable solutions to global challenges. We take a look at a few of the eco designs that were shortlisted for the 2013 awards ceremony that took place in August.

EKSO BIONIC Millions of people are paralysed each year as a result of neurological disease or spinal cord injuries, leaving many wheelchair-bound for the rest of their lives. California-based company Ekso Bionics, however, makes the impossible possible through a brilliant exoskeleton bionic suit – or wearable robot – enabling paraplegics to get back on their feet and out of their wheelchairs. It is called the Ekso and has the potential to change paraplegic life forever. The combination of motors and sensors, along with patient-assist with balance and body positioning, allow the user to walk with an efficient reciprocal gait pattern. An experienced user can transfer to/from their wheelchair and don or doff the Ekso in less than five minutes. The torso and leg straps are designed for the user to easily get in and out of the device either on their own or

related conditions.

with minimal assistance. It is designed for people

While the commercial version of the Ekso has

with lower extremity weakness or paralysis due to

recently been made available to hospitals and

neurological disease or injury – spinal cord injuries,

rehabilitation centres, the company hopes to make

multiple sclerosis, Guillain-Barré syndrome and

the technology more accessible so that people can

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use it at home and in their everyday lives, with a

that it can withstand up to four explosions before it

personal version releasing in 2014.

loses its spherical shape and thus the ability to roll.

MINE KAFON

THE D-PROCESS

There are presently in excess of 110 million

The population is growing and the construction of

deadly mines hidden underground, silently and

new homes cannot keep up pace. But the D-Process

surreptitiously waiting to kill thousands of people

offers a remedy by enabling you to design your own

ever year. Afghan designer Massoud Hassani used

home by 3D-printing the parts on site, and then

inspiration from his favourite childhood toy in

assembling them rapidly like big blocks of Lego.

order to design the Mine Kafon, a unique minefield

What is more, by avoiding the expensive logistics

sweeper that destroys all mines in its path. The

of large factories, eradicating transportation of

autonomous, wind-powered design is equipped

materials and minimising waste, the D-Process

with GPS sensor to enable it to track its path and

offers a sustainable solution to the ballooning

declare it safe, saving lives and limbs with every

housing crisis.

gust. Massoud Hassani, an Afghan designer living

architectural

firm

Facit

Homes

is

championing the D-Process, a prefabricated house

challenge. As a child he built wind-powered toys

building technique. The homes are designed on

that would roam the fields. What if a wind-powered

a computer, with every tiny detail factored in,

'toy' could roam the landmine-infested fields and

including the position of plug sockets, allowing

detonate the mines? And just like that, the idea was

the client and future homeowner to organise their

born.

space according to their personal specifications.

Similar to a supersized dandelion in shape,

A shipping container kitted out with 3D-printers is

Mine Kafon is built to be wind-powered, and heavy

positioned at what will become the doorstep, and

enough to trigger mines as it rolls across the

cuts the bare wooden walls to the precise size,

ground. It is made from dozens of bamboo legs

creating the chassis, or rather a 'big wooden Lego',

radiating from the centre, with round plastic 'feet'

as Bruce Bell, Facit Homes' managing director put

that apply pressure to the ground. The GPS unit that

it. These 'Lego' pieces are complete with all the

will track the path cleared by the Mine Kafon is the

holes needed for fitting electricity, insulation, and

key to its success. While some of its bamboo legs

drainage system.

are destroyed in the explosions, Hassani claims

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British

in The Netherlands, has taken on this monumental

The D-Process scores points on almost every


aspect of building. It is dramatically quicker to assemble; a four-bedroom house can be assembled

novel food items.

in under a week. It needs fewer materials, meaning

AND THE WINNERS ARE

it is substantially more ecological. It requires a

The winners of INDEX: Award 2013 were revealed

smaller work force, meaning it is considerably

at a show that turned out to be a hybrid between

cheaper.

a live TV news show and a theatre production – complete with sound effects, lightning bolts and a composed news anchor, Steffen Kretz, who effortlessly guided his live audience of 1 500 Danish and international guests through a night of good news from the news channel 'Design to Improve Life News'. The winners, in order of appearence, were: Smart Highway: a Dutch take on intelligent roads of the future. FreshPaper: a revolutionary and simple sheet of paper keeping produce fresh four times longer. The Natalie Collection: a trio of birth simulating devices preventing child and maternal death.

LEPSIS

Copenhagen Climate Adaptation Plan: the Danish

Growing and eating nutritious grasshoppers in

capital's pioneering plan of how to address the

your kitchen could be a sensible solution to the

changing climate.

looming global food shortage predicted for 2050

Raspberry Pi: a $25 computer aiming to digitise the

(or even sooner if things go badly awry with climate

whole world.

SG

change). LEPSIS: The Art of Growing Grasshoppers might sound less than appetising to some, but the sustainable advantages should be incentive enough for us to rethink what is (in)edible. Mansour Ourasanah, who suffered through hunger and poverty in Togo, West Africa, due to inflation and droughts, together with KitchenAid, came up with the Lepsis – an attractive kitchen

For more info visit http://designtoimprovelife.dk/ or see video below. Editor's Note: Our sister publication, Odyssey Magazine, recently ran an article about SA man, Justin Smith, who opened up his own rehabilitation centre called Just Walk Bionics using the Ekso. For more visit www.justwalkbionics.co.za.

appliance for breeding grasshoppers domestically. LEPSIS is a vessel optimised for neatly breeding,

feeding, harvesting and killing grasshoppers, before turning them into food. Grasshoppers require little room and few resources to grow; they grow to edible maturity in under two months and lay plenty of eggs before they die. Naturally, this is not for the faint-hearted. However, it sends an important message that we must reconsider what is (in)edible and challenge our culturally-bound responses to

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Feature

A Frack Mob ptotest in Manhattan last year to bring awareness to the gas pipeline being built by Spectra Energy

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Photo http://occupythepipeline.blogspot.com

FRACKTIVISM


Recently, activists from 26 countries participated in around 250 protests to demonstrate against fracking (hydrological fracturing) technologies, which they say contaminate groundwater and hasten climate change. Under the banner of Global Frackdown, now an annual event that takes place each October, the protests targeted fracking – a process used to extract hydrocarbons by pumping pressurised water and chemicals underground. In SA, despite a groundswell of opposition from affected parties and concerned citizens, the government appears intent on allowing major oil and gas companies to begin exploratory wells across a wide swathe of the country. But that is unlikely to happen without significant public protest and outcry. We take a look at the new phenomenon of fracktivism, which is drawing once reticent citizens into a new wave of activism.

O

n Saturday, October 20th, hundreds of demonstrators took to the streets of cities across the globe. Those coming out

against fracking ranged widely from students to eco-activists, people living close to or downstream from fracking sites and many ordinary folk who see few advantages in this methodology of extending the lifetime of the hydrocarbon fuels industry. They fear both increased global CO2 emission and severe harm to local communities. One (not local) example illustrates what most of the protesting is all about. Around 1 000 protesters in Pungesti, Romania, hit the streets to voice their opposition to US oil giant Chevron's plan to start

drilling outside that small village. Although the energy firm received permission from the local authority, concerned locals have come together to take a stand against the potential health and enviro-risks posed by hydraulic fracturing in the region. The protesters shouted: 'Chevron, go home' and 'We say no to shale gas'. Peaceful anti-fracking protests were also held in the northern Canadian town of Yellowknife while around 250 demonstrators gathered in three Canadian cities in New Brunswick. Approximately 100 protesters blocked one lane of the highway

eNCA SA Environmentalists Join Global Anti-Fracking Day

Dozens of demonstrations were held across the US during the worldwide anti-fracking protests, which also saw hundreds of protesters on Cape Town's streets. Earlier in the day, activists had joined protests in the UK, Spain, France, and Ireland. In the UK alone, at least 13 separate demonstrations were held in major cities, including Belfast, Glastonbury, Manchester, and Preston.

near the town of Rexton. in to take down barriers erected by members of the Elsipogtog First Nation tribe, arresting some

ď ™

Tensions also rose in New Brunswick when the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) moved

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http://energyindepth.org

How it works High volume, slickwater, horizontal hydraulic fracturing, or 'fracking'/'fraccing', are among the names given to this increasingly controversial practice. It involves the extraction of unconventional gas, such as shale gas, from places previously closed off to the petro-chemical and fuels industries. The technique involves sinking a vertical well that is drilled to a depth of between 2 000m and 6 000m, (far below surface aquifers, say proponents) after which the drilling bore turns to drill horizontally for a few thousand metres. A mixture of 99-99.5% water and sand, along with 0.5-1% chemicals is pumped under high pressure into the well. This process fractures the shale rock layer, releasing the gas trapped between rock particles.

WATCH THIS!

Anti-fracking & climate protesters England

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WATCH THIS!

Anti-fracking protest Canada


http://blogs.sfweekly.com www.mintpressnews.com

http://stateimpact.npr.org http://ecowatch.com

http://electrictreehouse.com

Methane contaminates a local water supply in the US, causing the water to 'burn'

http://occupythepipeline.blogspot.com

21 S G


www.scoop.it

WATCH THIS!

Anti-fracking activists New York City

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WATCH THIS!

Fracking demonstration France


Water usage & contamination risks Millions of litres of water (about 20 million l) are required for one frack per well, as well as thousands of litres of chemicals. These chemicals can range from benign to highly toxic, some of which are known carcinogens, says TKAG. According to the website www.watersafe.co.za: 'Just one hydraulic fracture uses the same amount of water as the town of Graaff-Reinet would use in about three days.' Apart from the intensive water use, the operations of unconventional gas production has caused surface and ground water sources to become contaminated and unfit for human consumption, claims TKAG.

ď ™

40 people. Activists and local aboriginals held

can be made into liquid fuel, thereby replacing

demonstrations for a week to protest shale gas

diminishing oil reserves globally, it will do nothing

exploration in the region.

to reduce greenhouse gas emission and associated

Residents of Pennsylvania stood in solidarity

climate change. Also, the amount of water used is

with Canada's Elsipogtog First Nation in their fight

considered far too high for already water-stressed

against fracking. Dozens of protesters took to the

regions.

streets near Raritan River in New Jersey, while others

In SA this may come to many billions of litres if fracking is carried out across large stretches of

gathered in New York. California activists marched and participated in a bike event to protest against fracking near Ballona Creek. A demonstration was also held in the city of

the hinterland where gas deposits are likely to be found. Geopolitical commentator Ian Crane told RT that the benefits of hydraulic fracturing in terms

Oakland. In all, dozens of demonstrations were also held

of job creation and meeting energy demands

across the US during the worldwide anti-fracking

have been drastically exaggerated – and that the

protests, which also saw hundreds of protesters on

consequences of the controversial practice could

Cape Town's streets. Earlier in the day, activists had

prove cataclysmic.

joined protests in the UK, Spain, France, and Ireland.

'I think the thing that should be put above

separate

everything else is the protection of the water supply,

demonstrations were held in major cities, including

because if we don't have access to fresh water, we're

Belfast, Glastonbury, Manchester, and Preston.

talking about the potential end of all life. As for the

In

the

UK

alone,

at

least

13

Experts divided

Expert opinion is divided on the issue of fracking. Some say it is relatively safe if done properly with little danger to groundwater aquifers. Others are less certain and point to problems, especially in the US where fracking has been going on extensively

for several years, and where there has been leakage of the toxic chemicals and methane and other gases into groundwater sources close to wells. Still others say that not only is this practice bad for local communities, it is a terrible idea for the planet

jobs and as for the gas – at what price? The end of ecology or the end of life on earth as we know it?' Others, particularly petro-industry spokesmen, poo-poo such concerns as wildly exaggerated. The main issue that most eco-oriented people, and ordinary citizens who've been taking to the streets with them in the growing number and size of anti-fracking protests that are being seen, feel that the risks if 'something goes wrong', and there is a toxic chemical or gas contamination of groundwater reserves, are simply too high to warrant taking the chance.

because, although fracking can produce gas which

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What is fracking, really?

Shale gas mining (SGM) as it is formally called, is a

horizontal, slick-water fracturing ('fracking' or 'hydraulic fracturing'). It involves pumping water, sand and chemicals (most are kept secret but some of the known ingredients in a fracking mix are highly toxic) into horizontally-drilled wells, under hydraulic pressure to fracture the underground shale layers and release gas. SGM is presently banned or under some form of

restriction or moratorium in a number of countries and states on different continents. In the US, the American Environmental Protection Agency has extended the completion of what is now a six-year investigation by two years until May 2015. According to the anti-fracking Treasure the Karoo Action Group (TKAG), SA has conducted a cursory investigation into SGM under the auspices of the Department of Minerals. There has been no effective public participation in SA as yet, despite a repeated undertaking by Minister Susan Shabangu to do so. The economics of SGM, especially in America, are also contested – specifically with regard to energy return on investment (EROI) and sustainability. Possible jobs that could be generated by SGM is another area of disagreement, both in terms of actual numbers, local employment and also so-called sustainability. 'Taking

these

facts

into

account,

and

acknowledging the lack of cohesive, broad and inclusive government consultation with the various stakeholders in SA, we stand in opposition to the licensing of shale gas exploration, or SGM, in South Africa,' says TKAG. 'South Africans may be well advised to request scientific proof that shale gas is the best option to create sustainable jobs, energy and allow our children to live out the promise of Section 24 of the Constitution of the Republic of SA,' the group adds on its well-read website.

Fracking in SA

The moratorium on fracking in SA, endorsed by Cabinet in April 2011 and extended by six more months in August 2011, was lifted in September

S G 24

www.themichiganvoice.com

process that applies the technique of high-volume,

Climate change & natural gas Shale gas (natural gas) can be used for electricity generation. Natural gas is a fossil fuel that consists mostly of methane gas. Methane is an odourless, colourless greenhouse gas with a GWP (Global Warming Potential) of between 35 and 70 times that of CO2 over a 20 year period. After about 10 years, methane reacts to form CO2 and water in the atmosphere. Oil companies often promote shale/natural gas as being an 'abundant and clean energy source'. Shale gas may be cleaner burning than, for example, coal or oil, but if the lifecycle emissions are compared to conventional fossil fuels (such as oil and coal) natural gas may be equally harmful to the atmosphere, according to critics. This contention was confirmed in a recent study by Cornell University in America. Like other fossil fuels, natural gas is non-renewable and limited. The gas can only provide energy for a few decades, at most, depending on the recoverability and size of the natural gas reserves, before it becomes depleted. Some locations will provide much less gas and much shorter life-spans for fracked wells. During the fracking process, gas is often vented and/or flared, further contributing to greenhouse gas emissions. Quantities of methane gas close to the earth's surface result in ground-level ozone, say concerned environmentalists. A recent UN study showed that: 'Ground-level ozone kills farm crops and also adversely affects health.'


In SA, the depths of the gas bearing shale rock layers range between 4 000m and 6 000m. This is much deeper than the depths at which shale gas is usually extracted in the US, for example. According to Shell, there can be as many as 32 wells on one well pad. This would mean that about 640 million l will be used to frack 32 wells (for only one well pad). Each well pad can be 1-2.5ha in size. There can be four to six well pads in an area of 10km2. The well pads can be spaced 2-3kms apart. This would correlated with a usage of up to almost 4bn l of water used per 10kms2. Especially in a semi-arid region like the Karoo, and given that SA is already water-stressed, these figures are seen as very alarming by TKAG and other anti-fracking activists. Recently, estimates in the Marcellus shale deposit in the US have been slashed by 80% after further studies have been conducted. The same agency that overestimated the Marcellus reserves has also estimated the SA reserves. 'Shale gas could result in a wild goose chase,' says TKAG. Despite this most recent information about the likely extent of SA's shale gas reserves, applications have been accepted by PASA (Petroleum Agency of SA) for areas in the Karoo, Drakensberg, West Coast and a few other locations. 'It has become an issue of national concern and significance,' adds TKAG, which has become the local anti-fracking lobby's lead spokesbody. Anti-fracking groups also point out that SA, known for its sunny days, abundant wind and long coast lines, is ideal for renewable solar, wind and wave energy projects, rather than risky fracking undertakings. Renewable energy sources are still considerably underutilised in providing solutions to the country's looming energy problem, they add. In contrast, the government and pro-fracking lobbies seem to be leaning towards shale gas extraction as a quick way onto the hydrocarbon fuels bandwagon.

Although fracking can produce gas which can be made into liquid fuel, thereby replacing diminishing oil reserves globally, it will do nothing to reduce greenhouse gas emission and associated climate change. last year following the recommendations of a task team report. The report is available here: www.dmr. gov.za. The

report

suggested

that

exploration

proceed without allowing for horizontal drilling or hydraulic fracturing, while laws are amended and a monitoring committee is established. Due to what TKAG calls 'the fatal flaws in the applicants' EMP's

and other considerations', TKAG will be opposing any licences that may be granted in the near future by legal means. In other words, there's going to be a major fight over this issue here before any drills go in the ground – and that fight is almost certain to work its way through the legal system and finally find resolution, in legal terms, in the Constitutional Court. Win, lose or draw, however, anti-fracking activists here and abroad are increasingly determined to stop fracking wherever it's taking place or planned. Some recent demonstrations have successfully halted already-approved fracking operations and much the same may be expected in this part of the world too.

Health concerns

A myriad of health concerns and risks are associated with this form of natural gas production and can range from mild infections and irritations to cancer, say concerned parties. These risks are not only related to human health, but can also have detrimental effects on ecosystems. Different stages of the gas extraction process pose different health risks. Here are some examples: In the US, health concerns and a number of contamination incidents have increased as a result of the shale gas development boom. On 3 March, 2010, the US EPA (United States Environmental Protection Agency) announced that it would conduct a comprehensive research study to investigate the

25 S G


potential adverse impacts that hydraulic fracturing may have on water quality and public health. During construction of the well pads, the noise and dust from operations can be a nuisance. During production, the drilling sites are brightly lit and are active for 24 hours a day, seven days a week. The trucks that haul water, sand, chemicals and equipment, cause damage to the road infrastructure and are a source of pollution, noise and traffic congestion, say anti-frackers.

Shale Gas Mining is presently banned or under some form of restriction or moratorium in a number of countries and states on different continents. In the US, the American Environmental Protection Agency has extended the completion of what is now a six year investigation by two years until May 2015.

According to figures from the Pennsylvania DEP (Department of Environmental Protection), around 1667 truck trips are needed to transport only the water required for fracking for one well. In the SA context, these numbers are expected to be

considerably larger – and these figures do not even take the required delivery of sand, chemicals and equipment into account.

recorded, says the TKAG. Regardless of the final outcome of the fracking debate and associated legal actions likely in SA, there is clearly a worldwide uprising by concerned citizens of all stripes and from across the socio-economic board that their local habitats, farms, homes and

During the fracking process, risks regarding

water sources, along with their health and even lives,

chemicals spills, loss of control over the well, gas

are to be put at risk for geo-political reasons and

leaks, surface and ground water contamination are

for the benefit of big business and governmental

not to be underestimated, says TKAG. Fracking fluid

agencies.

is considered hazardous waste and contamination

This citizens' movement, now being called

of drinking water can lead to the disruption of the

fracktivism, is also dovetailing with the still-growing

endocrine system, as well as cancer, according to

(though thoroughly suppressed in the US by local

this group.

authorities) Occupy Movement.

The chemicals associated with natural gas development can range from ingredients used in ice cream manufacturing to extremely toxic and

proven

carcinogenic

chemicals

such

as BTEX (benzene, toluene, ethyl-benzene, and xylene), arsenic, formaldehyde and others. These chemicals are known to cause cancer (especially leukaemia), sensitivity of the eyes, throat, skin, body aches, dizziness, endocrine disruption and neuron-disturbances. Gas vapours lead to extreme respiratory and neuron-related illnesses, to only name a few.

How much more it will grow, and how many more millions will take to streets as fracking gains momentum as a replacement for diminishing oil reserves, remains to be seen. But one thing is certain: a showdown between big oil (which is largely behind fracking) and ordinary citizens has taken on a new dimension globally. And the conflict around this highly controversial practice is likely to continue against a background of growing awareness of its risks and a clearer picture of its alleged benefits. Who will win this titanic battle is as yet unclear. However, the fight over fracking seems to embody

Toxic gasses, VOCs (volatile organic compounds)

and symbolically represent many other similar

and vapours can escape and are often vented or

struggles between allegedly uncaring corporate

flared at shale gas extraction sites, causing air

oligarchs, and their governmental collaborators on

pollution. Apart from air pollution, there is, say

the one hand, and on the other, the broad mass of

anti-frackers, also 'a real threat to groundwater

people who are increasingly concerned about the

and surface water sources'. A number of cases of

forecast for our ever-more beleaguered ecosystems

water depletion, groundwater and surface water

upon which we all depend for life itself.S G

contamination, health effects and a few cases of deaths due to explosions and accidents have been

S G 26

Sources: www.treasurethekaroo.co.za, www.rt.com


http://occupythepipeline.blogspot.com

Quick fracking facts The amount of water per frack per well

+-20 million l. In the US this volume is about 16.5 million l, but the wells will be deeper in SA and therefore more water and chemicals will be required.

Size of the well pad Minimum of 1ha to about 2.5ha. According to Shell up to 32 wells per well pad can be drilled and fracked. As a measure of comparison, the average SA plot was around 550m2 during 2002. (www.bis.org/publ/bppdf/bispap21l.pdf). Based on this fact, between 18 and 42 South African plots/ houses can fit onto one well pad.

How many truck trips per well just for the water? According to the US's EPA: about 1 600 just for the water. Pennsylvania DEP (Department of Environmental Protection) figures indicate 1 667. These are likely to be more in SA, depending on where the water will be sourced from.

How many truck trips required for equipment and other materials? 750 truck trips

Calculation of water usage and truck trips per well pad

Assuming 20million  l per well, and 32 wells per well pad, along with the above figures: To frack 32 wells (one well pad of 1-2.5ha), 55 344 truck visits to the well pad site. Shell calls 50 pads a 'development area'. Per 'development area', 32bn l of water will have to be used and about half of that will end up being toxic and radioactive waste water.

Duration from set-up to the first frack Some 47 days on average (perhaps longer in SA because of increased deposit depths), running at 24 hours a day. Source: www.treasurethekaroo.co.za

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Health

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EARTHING

Here, we republish chapter 1 from Earthing, titled Electrical You and Your Electrical Planet by Clinton Ober, Stephen T Sinatra (MD), and Martin Zucker.

H

ave you ever noticed a subtle tingling or sensation of warmth rising up from your feet during a barefoot stroll on

a sandy beach or grassy field glistening with the morning dew? Did you feel revitalised at the end of your walk? If you did, you experienced the Earth energising your body. The fact is that we live on a planet alive with natural energies. Its surface teems with subtly pulsating frequencies, a phenomenon unknown to most people. Who regards the sand, grass, sidewalk, or dirt beneath their feet as an energy field? But that indeed is what the ground is and

always has been. Put another way, your planet is a six

sextillion (that's six followed by 21 zeroes) metric ton battery that is continually being replenished by solar radiation, lightning, and heat from its deep-down molten core. And just like a battery in a car that keeps the motor running and the wheels turning, so, too, do the rhythmic pulsations of natural energy flowing through and emanating from the surface of the Earth keep the biological machinery of global life running in rhythm and balance – for everything that lives on the land or in the sea. People. Animals. Fish. Plants. Trees. Bugs.

Bacteria. Viruses. Throughout history, humans have strolled,

sat, stood, and slept on the ground – the skin of their bodies touching the skin of the Earth – oblivious to the fact that such simple contact transfers a natural electrical signal to the body.

Reconnect to the earth's vibe, by feeling the ground underneath you, to recharge

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Only recently has the knowledge and significance of

gather scientific momentum.

this connection been explored and explained by scientific

This is the subject of our book.

experts in geophysics, biophysics, electrical engineering,

The natural frequencies of the Earth that we speak of

electrophysiology, and medicine. From them, we are

are waves of energy caused by the motions of subatomic

learning that the Earth's electrical energy maintains the

particles called free electrons. Nobody has ever seen

order of our own bodily frequencies just as a conductor

an electron, but you can think of them in the setting

controls the coherence and cadence of an orchestra. We

of a beehive. The bees, buzzing around the hive, are

all live and function electrically on an electrical planet. We

like electrons that move around the atomic nucleus in a

are each of us a collection of dynamic electrical circuits.

'cloud' of energy. Another analogy used over the years

In the living matrix of our complex bodies, trillions of cells

is that of planets revolving around the sun. The nucleus

constantly transmit and receive energy in the course of

contains protons, with a positive charge, and neutrons,

their programmed biochemical reactions. Think of them

that have, as their name implies, no charge. Electrons

as microscopic electronic machines. The movement of

have a negative charge.

nutrients and water into the cells is regulated by electric fields, and each type of cell has a frequency range in which it operates. Your heart, brain, nervous system, muscles, and immune system are prime examples of electrical subsystems operating within your 'bioelectrical' body. The fact is, all of your movements, behaviours, and actions are energised by electricity.

To understand the primordial relationship between bioelectrical you and your electrical planet, consider for a brief moment three types of materials used in electricity: conductors, insulators, and semiconductors. An example of a conductor is the metallic copper wiring in the walls

OUR LOST ELECTRICAL ROOTS

of your house or in the electrical cord that you plug into an outlet from an appliance. The outer waves of electrons

Most people, even in this scientific age, are totally unaware

in conductors – corresponding in a simplistic way to the

of their bioelectrical nature. Practically no one has the

outermost bees buzzing around the beehive or to the

slightest notion of an electrical or energetic connection

distant planets orbiting around the sun – are so loosely

between his or her body and the Earth. Nobody learns

bound that they easily move in the space between the

about it in school. So nobody knows that we have largely

atoms. They form a kind of gas around atoms and flow

become disconnected and separated from the Earth. In

freely throughout the solid conductive material. That is

developed societies, in particular, we have essentially lost

why they are called free electrons. Think of them as free

our electrical roots. Our bare feet, with their rich network

spirits, so to speak, not bound in a relationship with any

of nerve endings, rarely touch the ground. We wear

atom composing the solid material.

insulating synthetic-soled shoes. We sleep on elevated

In insulating materials, electrons are held in a

beds made from insulating material. Most of us in the

tight grip by their atoms. There are no free electrons

modern, industrialised world live disconnected from the

and consequently no current can flow through these

Earth's surface. Although it is not something you probably

materials. Examples of insulating materials include plastic,

have ever thought about, you may be suffering needlessly

rubber, glass, and wood. You can now see why most of

because of this disconnect. And you may be suffering

the time you are separated from the Earth. Your shoes'

severely, and in more ways than you could ever imagine.

soles are made of plastic or rubber, and your house is

As an analogy, think of a lightbulb with a loose

made mainly of wood. Semiconductors are in between,

connection. The bulb flickers, shines weakly, or doesn't

sometimes conducting, sometimes not. Their electrical

light up at all. Many people go through life with flickering

conductance is not as good as a conductor but not as

or weak health.

bad as an insulator. Semiconductors are the backbone of

We believe this book is the first ever written about Mother Earth's natural 'vibes' and how they keep us

S G 30

ELECTRICALLY CONDUCTIVE YOU

modern electronic equipment because their conductance can be controlled by the application of an electric field.

healthy and heal us – if we connect to the source.

Just like the Earth, your body is mostly water and

Disconnected, the body seems vulnerable and prone

minerals, and both are excellent conductors of electrons.

to

and

The free electrons pulsating perpetually on the surface of

accelerated ageing – a startling theory just beginning to

the conductive Earth, fed by natural phenomenon – solar

dysfunction,

inflammation-related

disease,


radiation, thousands of lightning strikes per minute, and energy generated from the inner core of the planet – are easily transferred up, into, and throughout your body as long as there is direct skin contact with the ground.

Homo erectus, back a hundred thousand generations or so, didn't know a thing about any of this. Neither did the hunter-gatherers who followed in the human timeline. Neither did the cultivator civilisations working the land about four hundred generations ago. And neither did the more recent Industrial Age incarnations. Even in today's electronic and wireless age, few know about the Earth's brimming reservoir of energetic free electrons.

Earthing at a Glance Earthing involves coupling your body to the Earth's eternal and gentle surface energies. You are not in any sense being electrocuted. Earthing is among the most natural and safest things you can do. Your body becomes suffused with negative-charged free electrons abundantly present on the surface of the Earth. Your body immediately equalises to the same electric energy

Scientists back in the late 1800s first measured the

level, or potential, as the Earth. Sometimes, a

Earth's subtle ground currents at different places around

warm, tingling sensation and often feelings of

the world, using words such as 'tranquil' and 'quiet' to

ease and well-being are felt.

describe them. Present-day science refers to them as

Will you feel better? Usually, yes, and often

'telluric currents' and recognises them as part of a larger

rapidly. The degree of improvement varies from

system – called the 'global electrical circuit' – involving clouds and the entire atmosphere. Geophysicists believe that this bank of almost limitless energy is continuously replenished with free electrons via an average of 5000 lightning strikes per minute occurring perpetually around the planet. Without getting technical, the electrical potential present on the Earth's surface rises and falls according to the position of the sun. The intensity is more positive and energetic during the day, in support of your daily activities from wake up to shut down, and less

person to person.

What does Earthing do? Defuses the cause of inflammation, and improves or eliminates the symptoms of many inflammation-related disorders. Reduces or eliminates chronic pain. Improves sleep in most cases. Increases energy. Lowers stress and promotes calmness in the body by cooling down the nervous system and stress

positive and energetic during night time hours, promoting

hormones.

zzzzzzs. This daily high and low pattern sets in motion

Normalizes the body's biological rhythms.

and orchestrates internal body mechanisms that regulate

Thins blood and improves blood pressure and

sleep-wake cycles, hormone production, and maintenance

flow.

of health.

Relieves muscle tension and headaches. Lessens hormonal and menstrual symptoms.

PAST CONNECTIONS The basic phenomena of electricity were known since antiquity, but electricity was only harnessed for industrial and residential use about 120 years ago or so. The electron itself was discovered only in 1897, so virtually

Dramatically speeds healing and helps prevent bedsores. Reduces or eliminates jet lag.

throughout the human timeline nobody knew anything

Protects the body

about electrons. But there was plenty of knowledge over

against potentially

the eons of time that the ground held special healing

health-disturbing

energy and was a basic aspect of connectedness to

environmental

nature. The Earth was sacred. This knowledge, passed

electromagnetic

down over the generations, has survived in one form or another around the globe. Civilisations everywhere recognised and tuned in to the cycles of nature for survival and health. They were aware of fundamental rhythms that regulate, for instance, sleep-wake cycles and

fields (EMFs). Accelerates recovery from intense athletic activity.

maintenance of health, and they knew that we functioned

31 S G


in co-ordination with the Earth's cycles and rhythms. Awareness existed of connectivity among the principles of Earth, life, and health, but expressed in the language of the day. Qi (pronounced chee) is a central principle in the long history of Chinese knowledge and is regarded as the energy or natural force that fills the universe. From India's Vedic past comes an equivalent term, prana, meaning 'vital force.' In the Chinese tradition, Heaven Qi is made up of the forces that heavenly bodies exert on the Earth, such as sunshine, moonlight, and the moon's effect on the tides. Earth Qi, influenced and controlled by Heaven Qi, is made up of lines and patterns of energy, as well as the Earth's magnetic field and the heat concealed underground. And within the Earth Qi, individuals, animals, and plants have their own Qi field. All natural things, in this concept, grow and are influenced by the natural cycles of Heaven Qi and Earth Qi. Earth Qi is absorbed, without thinking about it, when we walk barefoot, which may explain why it's so relaxing to walk without shoes and why exercises geared toward strengthening the body and relaxing the mind (yoga, tai chi, and qigong, for instance) are often practiced without footwear. A central focus in Chinese practices involves 'growing a root' and has to do with opening up communication between the bottom of the feet and the Earth. This process occurs through the 'yong quan point,' also known in acupuncture as the 'kidney 1 point'. The ancient Greeks surely knew something about this concept. Hercules, one of the greatest heroes of Greek mythology, fought and defeated the giant Antaeus, who was renowned as a great wrestler. As the story goes, Antaeus was invincible as long as his feet remained in contact with the Earth, from where he drew his strength. He had never been defeated. Hercules, knowing Antaeus' secret, lifts the giant off the ground and strangles him to death. Native Americans certainly honoured the connection to the Earth. The late Ota Kte (Luther Standing Bear), a writer, educator, and tribal leader from the Lakota Sioux tradition, summed it up this way: 'The old people came literally to love the soil. They sat on the ground with the feeling of being close to a mothering power. It was good for the skin to touch the Earth, and the old people liked to remove their moccasins and walk with their bare feet on the sacred Earth. The soil was soothing, strengthening, cleansing, and healing.'

S G 32

CONNECT TO THE EARTH & HEAL This book will show you just how soothing, strengthening, and healing the Earth is. It will totally change the way you regard the ground under your feet and your relationship to the planet you live on. For most people, reconnecting with Mother Earth (see video) usually means camping, hiking, gardening, going to the beach, or pursuing some other activity that returns us – in body and soul – to the bosom of nature. The reconnection we talk about in this book is something different. By reconnection we mean taking off your shoes and socks and sitting, standing, or walking barefoot on the ground, something that is absolutely free and available (of course, where safe and comfortable). The reconnection can also involve the use of conductive bed

WATCH

sheets or floor pads linked by wire to a ground rod outside your house or office, or plugged into a wall outlet with a modern Earth ground system. Either way, we call this reconnection process 'Earthing' or 'grounding,' terms we will use interchangeably. They simply mean you are connected to Mother Earth. What you are doing is akin to what is well known in the electrical world as grounding, the common practice of connecting equipment and appliances to the Earth to protect against shocks, shorts, and interference. Applied to people, Earthing naturally protects the body's delicate bioelectrical circuitry against static electrical charges and interference. Most importantly, it facilitates the reception of free electrons and the stabilising electrical signals and energy of the Earth. Earthing remedies an electrical instability and electron deficiency you never knew you had. It refills and recharges your body with something you never knew you were missing – or needed. Exposure to sunlight produces vitamin D in the body. It's needed for health. Exposure to the ground provides an electrical 'nutrient' in the form of electrons. Think of these electrons as vitamin G – G for ground. Just like vitamin D, you need vitamin G for your health as well. As you will read in this book, the results of Earthing often translate into a significant improvement – even total transformations – in health and vitality. One patient, a 36-year-old woman with advanced multiple sclerosis (MS), was so happy about her improvement after Earthing

that she once ran out of her house, stood in the middle of the street, and screamed to all her neighbours to get grounded. She said she wanted to start the 'barefoot revolution' and teach everyone how to get well. She

What is Earthin


THIS!

ng?

Take a chance as often as possible to go outside and feel Mother Earth under your feet

had tried Earthing out of desperation – something

natural elements, including clean air, proper nutrition and

someone had told her about – after a doctor advised her

pure water, and the missing link, our connection to the

to purchase an adjustable bed, a large screen TV, and

natural electrical rhythms of the Earth.'

to make herself as comfortable as possible. MS doesn't

Even athletes, who operate at the most intense levels

get better, the doctor told her. In her case it did, and

of physical human performance, have learned to ground

dramatically so.

and plug in to the natural energy of the Earth.

Another woman spent over five years with debilitating

In 1863, the eminent biologist T H Huxley stated that

pain, inflammation, fatigue, and sleep problems after

'the question of all questions for humanity, the problem

a serious car accident. Despite a long career in the

which lies behind all others and is more interesting than

health care industry, she found herself locked in an

any of them, is that of the determination of our place in

exhausting struggle to regain her health. She went

nature and our relation to the cosmos.' The content of this

from one practitioner and treatment to another. 'Like

book explores that question from the simple perspective

Humpty Dumpty in the nursery rhyme,' she said, 'all of

that your place in nature, in your immediate cosmos,

the king's horses and all the king's men could not put

requires you to be directly and routinely connected to the

me back together again.' Unable to work, she found

Earth under your feet.

herself instinctively drawn to lying in the grass or walking

In the pages ahead, we will explore the health

barefoot on the beach. In 1999, a friend gave her a

implications of mankind's disconnect and present

conductive bed pad. She slept on it nightly, and within

the unusual story about how the disconnect and the

months her pain, fatigue, and sleep problems vanished.

reconnect were discovered. You will read accounts of

'After years of pills and failed costly treatments, all

amazing healing from doctors and people from all walks

I did was lay down on my bed and sleep,' she said. 'I

of life. Most importantly, you will learn how easy it is to

believe our bodies have the ability to recover from almost

reconnect, to get Earthed, and to feel better.

any condition if we relieve imbalances caused by stress. To do this, we must provide our bodies with essential

SG

Earthing is published by Basic Health Publications, ISBN 978 1 59120 283 7.

33 S G


WATCH THIS!

Nestled Anja Wiehl

S G 34

Visual Poetry Jaymee Larrison & Anja Wiehl

Jade Holing

laNd art biennale


The 2nd International Land Art Biennale took place in Plettenberg Bay recently. We report.

A

fter a very successful land art event in 2011, several 2011 participants were included to bring a sense of continuity to the 2013 event,

and an impressive new list of invited artists also joined. These events are created in close collaboration with all stakeholders, making each experience uniquely site-specific. Influential land artists from SA and

abroad are invited, along with other national and local artists. Programs and workshops facilitate a

Land art engages in the much-needed integration of ‘culture’ and ‘nature’. Sometimes it is a celebration of the land that sustains us. Often it reminds us of the temporary nature of our shared existence.

collaborative process of sharing and the exchange of knowledge, skills, and experiences. In this way

one’s perceptions of given surroundings. It is like

the practice of land art, and the conversation around

being given new eyes. Even after the art has been

issues of land, environment, and the dilemma's

reabsorbed into nature, the memory of it persists

faced in our century and on our continent are

and informs one’s interaction with the landscape.

highlighted. Land Art as a genre is particularly

It doesn’t demand visual literacy or education to be

suited to merging perceptions regarding culture

moved by the experience of a great land art piece. It

and nature, connecting community and conservation

is immediate, and enhances one’s own sense of being

to the benefit of both human inhabitants and the

in the world. Land art engages in the much-needed

environment. Site_Specific Land Art Events promote

integration of ‘culture’ and ‘nature’. Sometimes it

site specific-art in Africa, facilitating communities to

is a celebration of the land that sustains us. Often

care for and appreciate their environment, as well as

it reminds us of the temporary nature of our shared

supporting and co-ordinating art and environmental

existence.

creators and patrons.

Site_Specific 2011 won the BASA (Business & Arts South Africa) Art and Environment award, which

are passionate about site-specific art. They describe

was awarded to the Beacon Island Resort for their

it as a form of communion with the land that changes

collaboration and support of the land art event.

SG

Chris Reinders

Chris Reinders

They are a not-for-profit association of people who

Beach Fractal Eco Art Walk participants facilitated by Simon Max Bannister & Galeo Saintz

35 S G


Jade Holing

Earth Pods

Malcolm Solomon

Malcolm Solomon

Kim Goodwin assisted by Lara Kirsten

Matrix of Man Malcolm Solomon

S G 36


Jade Holing

Jade Holing

Earth Pods

Cha Davenport

Kim Goodwin

Wendy Sanderson-Smith

Jaymee Phillips

Jaymee Phillips

Radial Symmetry

Standing Man Protest Gordon Froud & University of Johannesburg students

37 S G


Jade Holing

Untitled

Jade Holing

Jade Holing

Jade Holing

Jade Holing

S G 38

Beach Calligraphy

Genius Loci

Andrew van der Merwe

Andrea Christoforetti


Jade Holing

Hope Floats Francki Burger

Janet Ranson

Mark Porter

Janet Botes

Imagician

Jade Holing

Mud Flow

Go with the Flow

katty vandenberghe

Ken Heyns & Margie Ford

Untitled Nellie's Mermaid Kurland Community group: Women on the Move

Diane Victor Left: the work in progress

39 S G


S eries

sustainia The people behind 'Guide to Sustainia': Sustainia Founding Partners

Realdania, DNV, Novo Nordisk, DONG Energy and Monday Morning

Sustainia Knowledge Partners

In this series,HEALTH we republish excerpts from Guide to Sustainia: Exploring the Sustainable Society of Tomorrow (2nd edition). Text and research by international sustainability institute, Sustainia.

Microsoft, Philips Lighting, VELUX, General Electric, Vestas, Tetra Pak, UBS Investment Bank, Rambøll, IKEA, SAS, Cisco, Gehl Architects Executive Director, Sustainia

& Editor of 'Guide to Sustainia' Laura Storm

Project Manager of 'Guide to Sustainia' Jakob Anker Hansen Lead Writers

Laura Storm (Welcome to Sustainia, Cities & Homes), Jakob Anker Hansen (Health), Justin Gerdes (Transportation), Morten Jastrup (Energy & Homes), Jakob Riiskjær (Energy), Solvej Karlshøj Christiansen (Fashion), Jonas Eder-Hansen (Fashion), Summer Rayne Oakes (Fashion) Proofread

Justin Gerdes

Design of 2nd edition

Lisa Haglund & Tine Vognsen

Guide to SuStainia

SUSTAINIA

Acknowledgement

Claire Hamer (ASOS), Christian Smith (ASOS), Aaron Bolte (Future Fashion Guides), Marie Engberg (Future Fabrics), Mark Bannister (Echo Sourcing), Gauden Galea (WHO/Europe), Andy Haines (London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine), Bjarne Bruun Jensen (Steno Diabetes Center), Christina Warren Schnohr (University of Copenhagen), Buvana Chinnaswamy (Novo Nordisk), Ray Pinto (Microsoft), Charles Nielsen (DONG Energy)

SuStainia

explorinG the SuStainable Society of tomorrow

The secretariat of Sustainia Monday Morning

Valkendorfsgade 13, P.O. Box 1127 DK-1009 Copenhagen K Phone: +45 33939323 Email: Sustainia@mm.dk www.sustainia.me www.facebook.com/sustainia

S G 40

SUSTAINIA

Printed in Denmark 2013 Sustainia is initiated by Monday Morning, Scandinavias largest 54

1P ri

n t e d m atter

45

7

independent think tank and monthly magazine.

2nd edition

BUILDING THE WORLD OF TOMORROW


Lichtaktiv Haus, Hamburg,Germany – a typical 'settlers house' converted into a carbon neutral home

welcome home Though many Sustainians love the outdoors and ride bikes both for fun and transport, they eventually get to their destination and spend quite a lot of time there. Like people everywhere, Sustainians spend the majority of their time inside71. We work, sleep, eat, learn, and love in buildings.

Buildings have long been the dominant habitat of humans. That is why in Sustainia we build and renovate our houses to be a part of the solution, not part of the problem. For some time, reducing the negative impact of the building sector was considered enough. But we have moved beyond this approach – first, to buildings that aim for zero negative impact, and, second, to buildings designed to have a net positive effect on nature and the health of the people using them. We measure success towards these goals in the well-being of the people using the buildings, in the

41 S G


Buildings account for • 40% of all energy consumed 76 • 40% of carbon emissions 77 • 20% of the world’s water-use 78 • 40% of our solid waste 79 • 33% of humanity’s resource consumption 80

Better ventilation can reduce flu incidence by up to 87% and respiratory disease by up to 46%. Control of moisture inside can reduce asthma by up to 73%*. * Katz, G, presentation sourced from www. cap-e.com.

biodiversity of the land- or cityscape the buildings

enviro-stress factors have a negative impact on the

are part of, and in resources generated by the

body, mental well-being, and productivity. They can

buildings during their lifetime.

lead to discomfort, allergic reactions, and ailments

The hard part was changing the way we think

such as chronic tiredness, dry and itchy red skin,

about buildings – to realise that we could transition

dry eyes, runny nose and sneezing, chest pain,

to the net-positive impact buildings of Sustainia and

depression, and chronic coughing72.

still meet the needs of a growing population.

In many buildings, the air holds two to five

Once people realised this, a world of new

times as many pollutants as the air just outside73.

solutions opened. What was once considered

Indoor air pollution is more often the cause of

waste is now used as valuable building material.

health problems than the polluted air we may

Construction in undeveloped areas doesn’t have to

encounter outside our homes and it is linked to

mean degradation of the natural environment.

lower-respiratory infections responsible for about

Indeed, the restoration of former industrial sites

11% of all human deaths globally each year74.

has improved local biodiversity and the health of

In 2011, people living in developed countries

those living nearby. Cleverly designed and sited

spent 90% of their time indoors; globally, the

buildings encourage people to live more active,

number is 70%75. Just as the food we eat has a direct

healthy lives. The standard new building today

bearing on our quality of life, the air we take into

generates more power than it uses. After all,

our lungs around 22 000 times every day is essential

buildings are our habitat, and our habitat should

to our well-being.

support us.

And these are just the health impacts. Buildings are also the largest consumer of energy in the world. To heat, cool, and light

arguments giving for homes a change make-over buildings requires a huge amount of energy.

Buildings today are a major source of stress for

people and planet. Many people live in unhealthy

S G 42

houses or apartments with poor indoor air quality,

In Sustainia, we prioritise upgrading existing homes

without direct access to fresh air or sunlight,

to make them as efficient, healthy, and comfortable

that are over air-conditioned and too dark. These

as possible.


and ting ting and and

ls whenever available: Everclaiming excess or used buildls whenever available: Evern be reused, such as doors and building materials claiming excess orUse usedrecycled buildls whenever available: Everls whenever available: Evern be reused, such as doors and claiming excess or used build- available: Evermore whenever claiming excess buildn be reused, suchorcompanies asused doors andspecialize in reclaiming n be reused, such as doors and

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excess or used building elements or

materials that can be re-used, such

strict heating, especially when as doors and windows. d power plant, often offers the strict heating, especially when ient heating solution in urban dstrict power plant, especially often offers the heating, when Connnect to district heating: District heating, especially when ient heating solution in urban dstrict power plant, often offers the heating, especially when supplied by dient power plant,solution often offers the heating in urban a combined ient heating solution in urban heat and power plant,

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garden, even a small one, heat urban settings. nergy consumption compared garden, even a small one, heat s. heat pumps nicely complenergy consumption garden, even a smallcompared one, heat Use heat pumps: If you have a garden, even a small one, heat s. heatconsumption pumps nicely complenergy compared garden, even a small one, heat nergy compared s. heatconsumption pumps nicely complepumps can drastically reduce s. heat pumps nicely comple-

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five

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grammable thermostats allow bulbs in your home incandescent uce energy use. nowith need to run CFLs or LEDs can save $100 per year grammable thermostats allow en no one is home during the or more on uce energy use. no need to runelectric bills. grammable thermostats allow s sleeping. grammable thermostats allow en no one is home during the uce energy use. no need to run uce energy noProgram need to run sen sleeping. no one use. is home during the your thermostat: no one is home during the sen sleeping. Programmable thermostats allow s sleeping.

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Switch to energy-efficient appliances:

switch to energy-efficient appliances: look for ap use recycled recycled building materials whenever available: available: Everuse whenever EverLook formaterials appliances and use recycled building building materials whenever available: Ever- ambitious devices rated by EnErgy sTar or other more companies specialize in reclaiming excess or used buildmore companies companies specialize specialize in energy-efficient reclaiming excess excessappliances: or used used buildbuildswitch rated to look for ap more in reclaiming or devices by asENERGY STAR or be the ciencythat schemes, thesesuch will often most ene ing can be as and ing elements elements or or materials materials that can be reused, reused, such as doors doors and devices rated by EnErgy sTar or other ambitious switchthat to energy-efficient appliances: look for ap ing elements or materials can be reused, such as doors and products on the market. When the time has come to r other ambitious energy-efficiency windows. windows. switch to energy-efficient appliances: look for ene ap ciency these will often the most devicesschemes, rated by as EnErgy sTar or be other ambitious windows. appliance –these refrigerator, microwave, clothes washer, o schemes, as will often be the devices rated by EnErgy sTar or other ambitious products on the market. When the time has come to r ciency schemes, as these will often be the most ene er – remember that even if an EnErgy sTar-qualifi most ciency energy-efficient products onoften thetime schemes, as these will be has thecome most to ene appliance – refrigerator, microwave, clothes washer, or products on the market. When the costs a bit more, it could reduce your energy bill by $ products on thethat market. When has come to or er – remember if an EnErgy sTar-qualifi market. When the time has to even replace anthe oldtime appliance – come refrigerator, microwave, clothes washer, appliance –more, refrigerator, microwave, clothes washer, o costs a bit it could reduce your energy bill by $ er – remember that even if washer, an EnErgy sTar-qualifi appliance – refrigerator, microwave, clothes connnect to to district district heating: District heating, especially when connnect heating: District heating, especially when er – remember that even if an EnErgy sTar-qualifi a bit more, iteven could your energy connnect to dryer district heating: District heating, when bill by $ or tumble –costs remember that if reduce anespecially ENERGY supplied power plant, often offers the supplied by by a a combined combined heat and power plant, oftenyour offers the bill by $ costs heat a bit and more, it could reduce energy supplied by a combined heat and power plant, often offers the STAR -qualified appliance costs a bit more, it could cheapest and most energy-efficient heating solution in urban cheapest and and most most energy-efficient energy-efficient heating heating solution solution in in urban urban cheapest install panels: solar panels are increasingly a settings. reduce your energy bill solar by $50 annually. settings. settings. homeowners. solar power can be harnessed to crea install solar panels: solar panels are increasingly a for your home, to heat water, and to improve indoor li homeowners. solar power be are harnessed to crea installsolar solar panels: panels: solar panels increasingly a Install Solar can panels install solar panels: solar panels are increasingly ali for your home, to heat water, and to improve indoor homeowners. solar power can be harnessed to crea are increasingly affordable for homeowners. power can betoharnessed to crea for your home,solar to heat water, and improve indoor li Solar power be use heat heat pumps: pumps: homeowners. iffor you have a garden, garden, even a can small one, heat indoor li use if you have a even a small one, heat your home, to heat water, and to improve use heat pumps: if you have a garden, even a small one, heat harnessed createconsumption electricity for pumps reduce compared pumps can can drastically drastically reducetoenergy energy consumption compared pumps can drastically reduce energy consumption compared to conventional heating systems. heat pumps nicely your home, to heat water, and to conventional conventional heating heating systems. systems. heat heat pumps pumps nicely nicelytocomplecompleto complement solar solar heating systems. ment improvesystems. indoor lighting. ment solar heating heating systems. be water smart: install low-flow showerheads and fau flush toilets. Use gray water – collected in rainwater ta be water smart: install low-flow showerheads and fau Be toilet water Install low-flow and smart: garden. Buy simple filter bottles instead of b flush toilets. Use install gray water – collected in rainwater ta be water smart: low-flow showerheads and fau showerheads and faucets and be water low-flow showerheads and of fau toilet and smart: garden. Buywater simple filter bottles instead flush toilets. Use install gray – collected in rainwater tab switch to to compact fluorescent light bulbs (cfLs) or Leds: lowflush toilets. Use grey water –bottles switch fluorescent light bulbs (cfLs) Leds: toilets. Use gray water – collected in rainwater toilet and garden. Buy simple filter or instead oftab switch to compact compactflush fluorescent light bulbs (cfLs) or Leds: replacing most used bulbs replacing the the five fivecollected most frequently used incandescent bulbs in in toiletfrequently andingarden. Buyincandescent simple instead of b rainwater tanks filter – forbottles replacing the five most frequently used incandescent bulbs in your home with Cfls or lEDs can save $100 per year or your home home with with your Cfls toilet or lEDs lEDs cangarden. save $100 $100 per year or or more more and Buyper simple your Cfls or can save year more on electric electric bills. on on electric bills. bills.

filter bottles instead of bottled water.

use environmentally friendly painting and cleanin

don’t give off volatile organic compounds, or V UseThese enviro-friendly painting use environmentally friendly and painting and cleanin

no-VoC products greatly improve indoor air quality cleaning products: These don’t These don’t give off volatile organic compounds, or V use environmentally friendly painting and cleanin

your health. look for low-VoC paints and cleaning pro Program your your thermostat: programmable thermostats allow Program programmable thermostats allow use environmentally friendly painting and no-VoC products greatly improve indoor air cleanin quality give off volatile organic compounds, These don’t give off volatile organic compounds, or V Program your thermostat: thermostat: programmable thermostats allow you to automate systems to reduce energy use. no need to run you to to automate automate systems systems to reduce energy use. no need to run These don’t give off volatile organic compounds, orpro V your health. look for low-VoC paints and cleaning no-VoC products greatly improve indoor air quality you to reduce energy use. no need to run or VOCs. Low- or no-VOC products heating systems when no one is during the heating and and cooling coolingno-VoC systems when no one is home home during the products greatly improve indoor air quality your health. look for low-VoC paints and cleaning pr heating and cooling systems when no one is home during the greatly improveisindoor air quality and day, or or at night night when everyone sleeping. day, everyone sleeping. your health. is look for low-VoC paints and cleaning pro day, or at at night when when everyone is sleeping.

protect

energy use. No need to run heating

91 your health. Look for low-VOC paints and cleaning

and cooling systems when no one is

products.

91

home during the day, or at night when everyone is sleeping. Weather proof your house's outer shell: Simple steps such as plugging leaks can go a long way, saving money on heating and air conditioning bills. Replacing old, inefficient windows helps maintain a constant temperature in your home. You can choose windows with electrochromic shading that adjust tinting based on the intensity of sunlight, helping to keep your home cool in summer. Insulating the roof, attic, and wall cavities makes a home warm in winter and cool during the summer.

90 90 90

91 91

weather proof your house's outer shell: simple steps such as plugging leaks can go a long way, saving money on heating and air 71  Globally, people spend approximately 70% of their time indoors; conditioning replacing old,toinefficient windows helps mainin developedbills. countries, it is close 90%. US Environmental tain a constant temperature in your home. you can choose winProtection Agency, www.epa.gov/iaq/pubs/insidest.html , Looking For Pollution Intro1, consulted the 12/07/12; SMITH K R dows with electrochromic shading that adjust tinting based on the Where The People Are, East West Center, 1994, n 10, 8p • intensity of sunlight, helping to keep your home cool in summer. 72 Bluyssen, PM (2009): The Indoor Environment Handbook: insulating the roof, attic, and wall cavities makes a home warm in How To Make Buildings Healthy And Comfortable, Earthscan, 73  winter and• cool during the summer. http://www.epa.gov/air/basic.html consulted on London 74 

11 December 2012 • Statistics on-line, in UNEP-SBCI, Draft briefing on the sustainable building index, Paris, France, May 2010, 28p US Environmental Protection Agency, www.epa.gov/ iaq/pubs/insidest.html, consulted 12/07/12; SMITH K R, Looking For Pollution Where The People Are, East West Center, 1994, n 75 switch energy-efficient appliances: look, p5 for• 76appliances and 2010, Energy Performance In Buildings  IBID. 10, 8p to •  IEA 77 78   UNEP-SBCI website, consulted 27/06/12 •   UNEP-SBCI , Draft devices rated by EnErgy sTar or other ambitious energy effibriefing on the sustainable index, France.energy-efficient May ciency schemes, as these building will often be Paris, the most 79,80  UNEP-SBCI, Draft briefing on the sustainable 2010, 28p • products on the market. When the time has come to replace an old building index, Paris, France, May 2010, 28p

appliance – refrigerator, microwave, clothes washer, or tumble dryer – remember that even if an EnErgy sTar-qualified appliance costs a bit more, it could reduce your energy bill by $50 annually.

43 S G


vIsItIng A home In sUstAInIA desIgn Designfor forsustainability sustainability Design can can dramatically reduce energy dramatically reduce energy consumption and create settings consumption and create set- that encourage us to be more physically tings that encourage us to be active. more physically active.

orIentAtIon towArds the sUn Homes are with large facades facingfachomes areplaced placed with large facades easteast and west, letting letting in morning and evening ing and west, in morning and sun. Offices have large facades northfacades and south, evening sun. offices have large letting in high qualityletting daylight. north and south, in high quality daylight.

wIndows Create views, provide dayCreate views, provide daylight and add solar energy light andpassive add passive solarand natural ventilation to the building. energy and natural ventilaAutomated shading is essential tion to the building. auto- in warmer climates to keep out heat mated shading is essential from the sun. in warmer climates to keep out heat from the sun.

green rooFs And wAlls adding plants to rooftops, walls and balconies offers many benefits: added insulation, reduced runoff of water during heavy rainfall, noise reduction and reduced heat island effect. and it looks good too. heAt pUmps heat pumps can draw energy from the surroundings into the buildings. The good thing is, that every 1 kWh of electricity used can deliver 2-4 kWh of heat. 86 S G 44


solAr heAtIng solar heating system can provide heat and hot water. Combine them with heat pumps to create heat depots for use when the weather gets colder. solAr power photovoltaic cells can deliver clean energy to the building. Combined with a heat pump this can create heating too.

bUIldIng mAterIAls Use without Use building buildingmaterials materials harmful chemicals. Recycling without harmful chemicals. building materials can materireduce the recycling building environmental impact of the building als can reduce the environprocess dramatically. mental impact of the building process dramatically.

InsUlAtIon from mineral wool to aerogel, insulation materials are essential in every climate for keeping heat either in or out of the building.

UsIng wAter severAl tImes Reusing from wash basins reusingwater water from wash or showers to flush toilets basins or showers to flush reduces water consumption. toilets reduces water consumption.

smArt homes Monitoring and controlling Monitoring and controlenergy demand in the house ling energy demand in thecan reduce energy consumption house can reduce energyand create a more comfortable consumption and createhome. a more comfortable home.

redUCe Covered groUnd reducethe the amount of Reduce amount of ground covered buildings, groundby covered bypavements, buildparking lots etc. It reduces both ings, pavements, parking the local heat island effect and lots etc. it reduces both the pressure on sewage and the local heat island effect drainage. and the pressure on sewage and drainage.

rAIn wAter retentIon And ColleCtIon rain water can be held in fascines or tanks, reducing runoff of water during heavy rainfall. The water can be used for toilets, watering the garden, etc. 87

45 S G


OGILVY CAPE TOWN 58075/E/REV1

WHY CHANGE WHAT NATURE HAS PERFECTED? Water contained within a plant. It’s the most natural thing in the world. That’s why we’ve introduced the PlantBottle TM from Valprè ® – a PET bottle made from up to 30% plant material. It’s inspired by nature for a better tomorrow, because at Valprè ® everything we do is for tomorrow.

Valprè® and the Valprè® Urn Device are registered trademarks of The Coca-Cola Company© 2013.

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'Congratulations to the Sustania100 for 2013. They are the true action heroes of sustainability.' Arnold Schwarzenegger Honorary Chair of Sustainia Chair of Regions20

2013

sustania Top 10 Sustainability Innovations Sustainia Award is an annual international award given to a solution, technology or project with a significant potential to help build a more sustainable future. From their list of 100 sustainable solutions, the Sustainia100, an award committee led by former Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger reviews and selects a winner to be announced at the grand Sustainia Award Ceremony in Copenhagen every fall. This is a list of the final 10 solutions that have made it through a selection process and stand the chance of winning the Sustainia Award. Submit a sustainable solution for 2014 & visit here for more

47 S G


Bottling

solar

light

Philippines buildinGS Sector

US

Fenugreen

food Sector

Reducing food waste

for off-grid housing

with a piece of paper

Litre of Light redesigns solar

A piece of paper can reduce

lighting for the developing

global food waste. Low cost,

world using plastic bottles.

compostable,

The simple design creates

only

local jobs and teaches green

FreshPaper

skills.

8

BYD

trAnSportAtion Sector

israel

infused

keeps

spices, produce

TaKaDu

it Sector

Electric city bus

Using big data to

with 250 km range

prevent water leaks

With a range of 250km on a

TaKaDu’s

single charge, this all-electric

data from sensors to create

bus has the ability to deliver

actionable alerts about water

large-scale sustainable public

network anomalies sent to

transportation.

US

iFixit Repair manuals for your is

a

uses

educAtion Sector

application.

sweden

Veolia, Dalkia, Borås

enerGy Sector

broken devices iFixit

software

users via an easy-to-use Web 16

free,

Storing renewable energy

publicly

in hot water reservoirs

editable repair manual with a

This network responds to peak

mission to empower people to

consumption, limits fossil fuel

fix their stuff and save money

consumption, and maximises

while keeping electronics out of landfills.

18

Cellphone-based cancer

use of green energies.

20

zambia

CIDRZ

heAlth Sector

denmark

Neutral.com

fAShion Sector

Sustainable fashion

treatment in sub Saharan

from top-certified

Africa

production

Through the creative use of

Neutral.com

existing social infrastructure

holistic approach to produce

and telemedicine, CIDRZ has

basic clothing for consumers

prevention solution.

22

reSourceS Sector

netherlands citieS Sector

Tvilight uses smart controls to adjust the illumination and

your mobile phone

energy levels of streetlights.

Mazuma Mobile has prevented four

million

Tvilight Intelligent streetlights.

Cashback when recycling

over

a

12

uk

Mazuma Mobile

developed

and other labels.

developed a cervical cancer

Cool water inflow

mobile

phones from reaching landfills.

Waste heat from waste incineration plant used to chill water

SG

Water outlet

Supply temp. 6°C

26

S G 48

and

organic

fresh 2-4 times longer.

10

china

with

24

Return temp. 16°C

WINNER

Litre of Light


ODYSSEY

SA's leading integrated living mag

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The Mother Archetype Caroline Myss Barbara Marx Hubbard Hildegard of Bingen

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A 12-year-old activist speaks

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Options & insights for people seeking practical steps towards integrated living in the 21st Century

49 S G


Buildings

The Crystal One of the most sustainable buildings in the world

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The Crystal is a sustainable cities initiative by Siemens exploring the future of cities. Home to the world's largest exhibition focused on urban sustainability and a world-class centre for dialogue, discovery and learning, it demonstrates first-hand the remarkable systems and technologies that are employed to reduce its carbon footprint and ensure its enviro-credentials over the long term. We take a look at this 'intelligent' building.

51 S G


D

architects

pipes for heating or chilled beams for cooling. Cold

Wilkinson Eyre, this iconic building draws

water is passed through a ceiling-mounted beam so

inspiration from the many facets of a

when the rising hot air reaches the chilled beam it

crystal. Its waterside location on the Royal Docks

cools and sinks, bringing chilled air to those below.

esigned

by

award-winning

is a striking contrast with the surrounding London

Energy is recovered by thermal wheels. Outgoing

skyline of the O2 Arena, Canary Wharf and Emirates

air passes over a heat-absorbing disc which then

Airline Cable Car that passes by. The external shape

rotates into the incoming air stream, warming the

of the building creates unique internal spaces,

fresh air. Around 60% of outgoing heat or cooling

including an exhibition hall auditorium, conference

energy is recovered. By using 100% natural heat

facilities, meeting rooms and office spaces.

sources, the Crystal receives no heating bill.

The Crystal is an independent global hub for It hosts the world's largest exhibition on the future

Light & ventilation

of cities and is the first building in the world to

The self-shading facades

reach both BREEAM Outstanding and LEED Platinum

of

status. Sophisticated and integrated active and

high-performance solar

passive design elements make it one of the most

glass

sustainable buildings in the world.

around 70% of visible

debate on sustainable urban living and development.

The building's energy management system is

building which

light

use

allows

through

each

produced by Siemens and controls all electrical and

window, but only about

mechanical systems in the building. Information

30% of the solar energy.

from an outdoor weather station supplements over

The

3  500 data points within the Crystal. Connected

layers

systems include: heating, air-conditioning and

cavity.

ventilation

lighting

space in the building

controls; ground source heat pump; solar thermal

has access to natural

hot water system; black and rainwater systems; fire

daylight so that minimal

alarm and evacuation systems; and a photovoltaic

artificial light is needed.

systems;

weather

station;

glass

has

three

an

Argon

Almost

every

and

The lighting system

system.

in the Crystal uses a

Heating & cooling

combination

of

65%

fluorescent lights and heat

35% LED lights along with an advanced control

pumps supply virtually

system produced by Siemens which automatically

all

adjusts every individual lamp to provide comfortable

Ground of

source the

building's

heating and most of

brightness

its cooling. The system

Daylight and presence detectors will dim the electric

works

lighting or turn it off when it is not needed.

by

pumping

water through a pipe

The

levels

Crystal

without

Building

wasting

Energy

electricity.

Management

that loops deep into

System senses indoor and outdoor conditions and

the ground. There are

then controls the most suitable, energy-efficient

199 pipes at the Crystal

ventilation mode for each part of the building. At

totaling 17km in length

moderate temperatures, natural ventilation is used

and reaching as deep as

and the windows open automatically. At low or high

150m.

temperatures the windows close and a mechanical

Two ground source

ventilation system takes over. Natural ventilation

heat pumps then create

can also be used during night time, reducing the

hot and chilled water and

cooling demand during the following day.

pump it to underfloor

S G 52

the


Water Rainwater is collected directly

from

the

roof

and

building's stored

in

a

30m続

underground

storage

tank. Water is treated using

filtration

and

ultraviolet disinfection. Blackwater

receives

the

level

of

when

it

highest

treatment is

recycled,

through

a

passing biological

tank with two treatment zones

(anoxic

Outside the building The Crystal has been built on a brownfield site in an

and

historically industrial area. The ground was treated

aerobic) and two filters (a membrane filter and a

and reclaimed prior to construction. Hard surfaces

long-life carbon filter). The recycled water is used for

surrounding the site are made from durable, recycled

irrigation and toilet flushing across the site. 100%

materials. A green roof covering the building's

of WC flushing is taken from non-potable sources.

energy centre provides storm water attenuation and

Around 80% of the building's hot water is heated by

a habitat for a rich variety of plant and animal life.

a combination of solar thermal water heating from

There are standard electric car charging points on

the roof and ground source heat pumps.

site for 12 cars and one rapid-charging unit. Cities are the growth drivers of our future. Half

Energy

of the world's population already lives in cities, and

The Crystal is a 100%

the number of city dwellers is rapidly growing. But

electric

building,

they also account for the biggest share of energy

around

20%

of

which is generated by the 1580m2 of solar roof

photovoltaic panels

consumption, CO2 emissions and enviro-impact. Cities are where we can make a difference. Many people move to cities in pursuit of work, adventure and a better quality of life. But in order

that

to protect cities for future generations, we need to

two-thirds

balance their overall enviro-impact and make better

of the roof. Energy

use of finite resources. The good news is that many

use in the Crystal

of the cutting-edge technologies required for this

is

so

vision of the future are already available. But it's

that

not just down to technology. Every individual can

of

make a contribution through the choices we make

cover

monitored

extensively every

kilowatt

electricity used can

every day.

be tracked. This can

To help cities identify and understand new

then be compared

urban challenges and highlight workable solutions,

with the performance

Siemens

of other buildings

co-operation with independent research partners, in

across the world to

order to contribute to the public debate and start a

ensure efficiencies are maintained. CO2 emissions

has

initiated

extensive

dialog with urban decision makers.

research

in

SG

for the Siemens offices in the Crystal are around 70% lower than in comparable office buildings in

For more info visit www.thecrystal.org.

the UK.

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Buildings

Europa City

Danish firm BIG has won an international design competition for a new green-roofed city, currently in the works for the suburbs of Paris. Europa City is a massive sustainable project topped off with a huge park that will combine the urban density of Paris with the bucolic setting of the suburbs. Intimate streets, connections to the metro, trains and adjacent highways as well as a connection to farmland will differentiate this master-planned city. It will combine all the convenient amenities of living in a city (like shops, offices, culture and activities) with the healthy qualities of living in the country. Bjarke Ingels Group

S G 54

competed in an international design competition against the likes of Valode & Pistre, Snøhetta and Manual Gautrand to win the award for Europa City. The project began with the context Parisian suburbs and countryside and combined that with the qualities that make Paris a world-class city – intimate streets, public transportation, culture, restaurants, and shopping all close together. The semi-circular shape evolved after careful planning to create a system of streets in the round with perpendicular streets shooting out from the centre. Public transportation into Europe City is convenient with metro and train


access and the highway runs right by it as well. Inside the project, the pedestrian-friendly streets encourage walking or biking and small buses will operate in a circuit. Europa City will include shopping, restaurants, cultural activities along with housing and office spaces. The project will also include a ski slope and a pool, which are expected to operate in sync to provide energy-efficient heat and cooling exchange. The entire project will be covered in an undulating green roof with views of the Parisian skyline. Not only does this roof serve as a large public park, it also works as insulation and will

Europa City is an eco-project that will combine the urban density of Paris with the bucolic setting of the suburbs. treat grey water and infiltrate rainwater for use in the city. Europa City is expected to be built as a model sustainable city that combines the efficiency of an urban area with the health benefits of living in the country. Visit www.big.dk

55 S G


Buildings

T

hese

awards

outstanding

recognise

achievement

in

sustainable architecture as well as

creating public awareness and debate on architectural issues. There are two entry categories – one for built work and the other for works of social importance, including research. Entries are evaluated against four criteria: Harmonisation,

People

Upliftment,

Planet rejuvenation, and Placemaking Performance. For AfriSam's CEO Stephan Olivier, the awards are an important platform to drive broad issues around sustainability. 'We recognise that the next decade is going to see major changes and innovations in architectural approaches to the built environment, largely driven by social development needs. Our sponsorship of these awards is our way of encouraging both established and emerging architects and engineers to focus on building in an authentically sustainable way, in both the consumer While it is acknowledged that the human

built

environment

impacts

heavily on world resources, the world population is unlikely to decline without some catastrophe. So it is appropriate

2014

and commercial arenas.'

Afrisam-SAIA Award for

that the awards seek to recognise

S G 56

projects that not only propose alternative

methods. The latter reveals how regular schools play

approaches to sustainable design but also, after a

a critical role in the life of communities removed

rigorous testing program, prove their worth.

from the benefits of wealthier settlements.

The first AfriSam-SAIA Award For Sustainable

The third cycle, announced during October 2013,

Architecture was run in 2009/10 and was won

now has the benefit of four years of evaluation: the

by Dalton Compound designed by Koop Design.

program will always seek to extrapolate lessons

This established a high standard to commence

learnt and the efficacy of testing programs on

the awards as the program established by Richard

previous entries.

Stretton was widely inclusive. It culminated not only

Increasingly, developers are acknowledging the

in a sustainable design and build but also included a

immediate benefit of energy and water savings

regime of participation by the local community.

that can be achieved comparatively easily and the

The second cycle awards were made to Lebone

slowly evolving value in satisfying public perception.

II College in Phokeng, North West Province, and

There's also a growing realisation that resources

Vele Secondry School in Limpopo. The former is a

are under great stress and the need to take action

sensitive but vibrant interpretation of contemporary

proactively rather than reactively.

technical design and a sustainable response to

'In SA the number of sustainable buildings going

housing 800 pupils in an education mode with

up is alarmingly low compared to the general number

accommodation, farming and alternative teaching

of buildings being erected,' says Sindile Ngonyama,


The awards seek to recognise projects that not only propose alternative approaches to sustainable design, but also, after a rigorous testing program, prove their worth. This involves a long process creating awareness and the range of benefits achieved initially quite easily and later with a more concerted effort. Photo http://digitalphotographycourses.co.za

Commented fellow juror, and one of SA's foremost sustainability thinkers, Gita Goven: 'We are on the threshold of huge shifts in the way development works. These require us all to raise our awareness of both human development and settlement requirements and foster a deeper understanding of how the environment can be regenerated, rather than depleted or degraded, as we address our developmental needs.' Joining Ngonyama and Goven on the

r Sustainable Architecture

juror panel for this year's awards are Llewellyn van Wyk, principal researcher in the built environment at the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research, Daniel K Irurah, senior lecturer at Wits

the new president of SAIA and one of the jurors for this year's awards. 'However in the corporate and commercial arena there is a noticeable move in this direction.' SA ranks extremely low on a listing of architects

per capita by world standards. This could be interpreted either as indicating the need for more architects or the value placed on architecture by our society. Alternatively, it could be an indicator of the importance of growth and skills development within the architectural society, perhaps in an alternative manner – for example, a street-level response to the built environment, rather than one proposed only by built enviro-professionals. Encouragingly a powerful underlying current of the AfriSam SAIA Award for Sustainable Architecture is highlighting the need to change the mindset of current professionals and that of the general public.

University,

Philippa

Tumubweinee,

senior lecturer at the Department of Architecture at the University of the Free State and AfriSam's technical experts Mike McDonald and Vincent Blackbeard. Significantly, a few brave architects have taken an initial stride to embrace the sustainable movement but with energy-efficiency legislation waiting in the wings, sustainable architecture has become an inevitable requirement. Those who have managed to ignore the importance of sustainability to date will no longer be able to do so. And, as perceptions evolve, a critical mass will be achieved until there is no such thing as 'green' architecture. All architecture will be green.

SG

Visit www.4tmrw.co.za

57 S G


CALL FOR ENTRIES Your work shapes the future

1. Harmonisation For a sustainable condition to be upheld. In the long run, all activities will add value to the five capital arenas on an ongoing basis.

2. People Upliftment The work must address the dignity of people through the creation of a socio-economic environment that is inclusionary, humane, self sustaining, and maximises the financial viability, impact and lifestyle cost efficiency during and post the implementation process.

3. Placemaking Performance Enhance the architectural landscape and contextual urban environment. Infuse delight through the built environment.

4.Evolutionary Paradigm Show how your project performs to design and develop an ongoing regenerating future.

Who are the South Africans that are able to shift paradigms with placemaking buildings that are ecologically regenerative BreinstormAFR051

and also uplift the community? The AfriSam-SAIA Award for Sustainable Architecture was created to find out.

See previous winners online and get everything you need to enter at www.4tmrw.co.za S G 58


Building N ews

Juan Carlos Ramos' Pyramid House

With its sunken living space, triangular glass walls and open plan, the Pyramid House brings an ancient building typology to modern residential architecture. Mexican architect Juan Carlos Ramos designed his Pyramid House for a competition that called for design ideas based on simple geometry, and his subsequent proposal is worthy of a modern-day pharaoh. The Pyramid House features glass walls that offer exceptional views of the surrounding landscape and allow natural light to penetrate its deepest corners. The openings vary from narrow slits to large glass planes and alternate in a way that gives the building a dynamic appearance that contrasts the static look of the geometry. Distributed across several levels of the pyramidal volume are two bedrooms, a library, kitchen, bathrooms, garage and even a recording studio. A cantilevered balcony is situated near the top of the building between the bathroom and library. Ramos demonstrates simple geometric shapes can be deployed in residential architecture. The house brings examples such as BIG’s cascading towers and steep roofs into the realm of single-family housing and promises to open up a whole new chapter in designing private homes.

59 S G


I ndustry AfriSam's Ulco Cement operation in the Northern Cape Province received the 2013 Industrial Award at the recent National Association for Clean Air (NACA) awards ceremony. This was in recognition of Ulco's contribution to air quality improvement through its multi-million rand bag house project, as well as for the operation's dust suppression systems to control a wide range of gaseous emissions. We report.

N

ACA is SA's primary technical and scientific

the company's enviro-policy

non-governmental body in the area of air

first

published

in

1996,

quality management. It has more than 500

the Ulco plant received ISO

members derived from companies, consultant

14001 certification in 2001.

firms, local authorities, professionals involved in

However,

air quality management and individuals interested

receiving this accreditation,

in clean air.

AfriSam

even had

prior

to

undertaken

'The importance of enviro-awareness and the

to continually improve the

realisation of the need to protect the earth and

enviro-performance of the Ulco

to conserve enviro-resources are increasingly

plant and the Environmental

recognised worldwide,' Claudene Moorgas, AfriSam's

Management

environmental manager, says. 'Enviro-stewardship

through various initiatives.

for our planet and all its resources needs our

S G 60

Ulco Cem operation award As

part

System of

(EMS)

Ulco's

EMS,

attention if the world is to survive into the future.

emissions

monitoring

AfriSam has consistently led industry standards

determines

in enviro-stewardship over many years and, for

performance of the plant is

the past two decades, we have been pioneering

in line with the legislated or

programs and projects that improve on systems and

targeted

parameters.

processes to ensure the minimum possible impact

includes

monthly

on the environment.'

dust monitoring through the

whether

the

This

fall-out

As part of AfriSam's continual drive towards

use of dust buckets. In June

good enviro-stewardship and in alignment with

2013 a Topaz ambient air


As part of AfriSam's continual drive towards good enviro-stewardship and in alignment with the company's enviro-policy first published in 1996, the Ulco plant received ISO 14001 certification in 2001. However, even prior to receiving this accreditation, AfriSam had undertaken to continually improve the enviro-performance of the Ulco plant and the Environmental Management System (EMS) through various initiatives.

ment n wins

constituents, the heavy metals cadmium, thallium, mercury, arsenic, antimony, lead, chromium, cobalt, copper, manganese, vanadium and nickel. In 2011, AfriSam's Board of Directors approved the introduction of bag filter technology at Ulco, recognising that this was the most responsible decision to take. A robust technical investigation identified the precise technology required to achieve current and reduced emission targets set for the site and the installation was commissioned in September

quality monitor was installed to determine the quality of ambient air at the plant and surrounding community. The unit monitors total suspended particulate, particulate matter 10, 2.5 and 1, as well as wind

speed

and

direction.

Other

checks

include

online

continuous

an

emission

monitoring unit that constantly monitors

CO2,

nitrogen,

benzene,

oxides

of

xylene,

toluene, sulphur dioxide, VOCs (volatile organic compounds), ammonia,

hydrochloric

acid and hydrogen fluoride. Emission monitoring is also conducted annually by a third party

independent

service

provider who measures and

this year. The technology ensures that particulate matter emission levels remain below 30mg/Nm3, comfortably meeting legislated requirements for the foreseeable future. The

bag

house

represents

cutting-edge

technology internationally, with the additional benefits of reducing power consumption and providing good bag service life by minimising stress on the bags, which are guaranteed to achieve an international best practice service life of five years. This is a major advance on conventional bag life and will translate into significant cost savings. 'The state-of-the-art bag house at Ulco is one of numerous new enviro-benchmarks AfriSam has contributed to the industry,' Moorgas comments. 'We firmly believe that it's not just about complying with legislation, but also about going the extra mile today to protect and sustain the environment for future generations.'

SG

Visit www.afrisam.com

reports on, in addition to these

61 S G


WE DIDN’T DANCE LIKE CRAZY WHEN HIS TEAM SCORED THE WINNING GOAL We didn’t shout our lungs out for his favourite team We didn’t shed a tear when the game looked lost We didn’t hold his arms high when the equaliser was scored

WE DID HELP CREATE THE STADIUM WHERE IT ALL HAPPENED CREATING POSSIBILITIES

With the planet as one of our core values, we assess the carbon footprint of each and every one of our operations and products while actively striving to drive down our impact on the environment.

S G 62

www.afrisam.com


Energy

emergent

landscape

the Disruptive forces – distributed power generation, technology changes, and a new breed of customer – mean that the traditional power utilities' business model which has endured for decades is under threat, according to PwC's global Power & Utilities Survey released recently. We take a look.

M

any in the industry expect the existing power

potentially disruptive changes.

utility business model in their market to

Angeli Hoekstra, PwC Power & Utilities Leader

transform or even be unrecognisable in the

for SA, says: 'Decentralised generation is already

period between now and 2030.The majority of utility

eating into revenues of power utility companies in

companies (94%) predict complete transformation

mainly developed countries and partly marginalising

or important changes to the power utility business

conventional generation. Ultimately, it could shrink

model. Half of companies in Africa say it is likely

the role of unwary power utility companies to

or highly likely that increasing levels of distributed

operators of back-up infrastructure.

generation will force them to change their business

'Efficiency

savings

and

performance

models. The prospect of transformation of the

improvements can only buy power utility companies'

industry business model arises from a number of

a short amount of time.'

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is based on research conducted between March and July 2013 with senior executives from 53 utility companies in 35 countries across Europe, the Americas, Asia Pacific, Middle East and Africa. The survey looks at the pressures building up on the traditional power utility business model and the

The survey shows that 41% of companies anticipate business model transformation and, a further 53% expect existing business models to undergo 'important changes'.

industry's viewpoint on the transformative changes that lie ahead.

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and, a further 53% expect existing business models

The survey shows that four in every 10 (41%) of

to undergo 'important changes'. Very few (6%) of

companies anticipate business model transformation

participants globally expect the business model

www.veniceclayartists.com

http://psu.edu

The 13th PwC Annual Power and Utilities Survey


to remain 'more or less the same'. The strongest

world, energy-efficiency heads the impact list of

anticipation of transformation is from power utilities

technological developments in Africa, Asia, the

companies in Asia. In contrast with other regions,

Middle East and Europe.

few participants in the Middle East and Africa (MEA)

New sources of fossil fuel will also have a major

and South America anticipate transformation to their

impact on the power market, with shale gas and

business models. Instead, most or all expect it to be

tight oil changing the economies of the energy

similar to today but with 'some important changes'.

landscape. Already, the impact of shale gas on

Nearly two-thirds of companies believe there

the market is reaching far beyond North America.

is a medium-to-high probability that distributive

'Important quantities of shale gas also exist in

generation will deliver more than a 20% share of

other countries, such as SA, Jordan and Chile, which

worldwide generation by 2030. More than half

have limited conventional oil and gas or in regions

of companies (57%) say there is a high or very

such as Europe where conventional own supplies

high likelihood that distributed generation will

are becoming depleted,' adds Hoekstra. However,

force utilities to significantly change their business

national energy policies, 'above ground' economics

models. In addition, companies anticipate distributed

and local community politics, as well as geology, will

generation to push up the price consumers pay for

be key factors determining the pattern of shale gas

transmission and distribution. It will increase the

exploitation.

proportion of fixed costs in the price of electricity.

The majority of survey participants in Africa

Only 20% of participants report fixed costs above 50%

and the Middle East (80%) see distributed power

now but a third (33%) expect fixed costs to have risen

generation as 'an opportunity' versus only 20% rating

above 50% of the electricity price in 10 years' time.

it as a 'threat'. 'Companies will also need to address

Within Africa, and especially Sub-Saharan Africa,

the barriers that are likely to stand in the way of them

excluding South Africa, this general trend might

being well-positioned to compete for customers in

be slightly different due to more off-grid solutions

this new market landscape.'

becoming available for rural areas, says Hoekstra. If barriers can be overcome, distributed generation could

set

the

scene

for

widespread

Policy-makers have the difficult task of grappling with the issues of supply availability, affordability

industry

and enviro-impact. Companies in Africa and the

transformation – with energy-efficiency, falling solar

Middle East feel that policy-makers are working well

prices, demand-side management and smart grid

with the industry to promote investment and protect

technology, heading up the list of developments that

customers. However, in Africa and the Middle East

those surveyed believe will have the biggest impact

current developments in companies' power markets

on their power markets.

are increasing rather than decreasing the risk of

Hoekstra says: 'The impact of changing economics

blackouts. Certainty and clear planning are the things

of solar power, as well as the potential of energy

that the sector needs according to survey participants.

efficiency and other demand-side management

'There are immense infrastructure requirements

and smart grid technology, head up the list of

associated with just the renewal and maintenance

developments that those surveyed believe will have

of existing infrastructure, which is certainly true for

the biggest impact on their power markets.'

Africa,' comments Hoekstra, 'But there are also new

The least impact is expected from offshore wind

demands such as how back-up capacity is going to be

and from carbon capture and storage technology

provided for a system with renewable and distributed

which remains hindered by feasibility and development

generation and, within Africa, how liberalisation of

problems. Interestingly, the crucial breakthroughs

the energy sector will take place in a controlled way

required in stationary battery storage that would be

and off-grid solutions can be utilised.'

needed for self-generation customers to break free

'Power utility companies will need to respond to

from dependence on the grid, appear too far off for

these changes to not be eclipsed by technological

most companies to foresee any significant impact for

and market change, while strategies that identify

the time being.

the best revenue opportunities in changed, and

Onshore wind generation gets the highest impact rating in South America. Elsewhere in the

potentially transformed future market landscape, will be the key to survival,' concludes Hoekstra.

SG

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lighting the way Whether for a private home, a commercial business or a wine farm, you can draw smart energy from the sun for less.

Tel: +27 (0) 21 852 7333 Email: r.jacklin@soventix.com www.soventix.co.za S G 66

Soventix SA (Pty) Ltd, a subsidiary of Soventix GmbH in Germany is involved with the development and realisation of roof top and carport solar photovoltaic plants from residential to agricultural as well as large scale solar farms. Whether you finance the solar plant yourself or sign a power purchase agreement, Soventix will ensure you’re protected from the rising costs of energy for the next 30 to 40 years. Not only will you be saving on your energy bills, but you’ll also be contributing to a more sustainable environment. Renewable energy is the future and is more affordable than energy from non-renewable sources. becoming mo


Energy

Energy Efficiency

AT Work

Since the beginning of 2008, all South Africans have experienced the disruptive effects of load shedding. It has not only impacted negatively on our businesses, but also in our private lives. It has become evident to all South Africans that the country does not have sufficient power generation capacity to meet its needs.

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P

lans are in place to bring in new power

The Southern African Association for Energy

generation capacity (see pg 181), but will

Efficiency (SAEE) aims to become the association in

not be sufficient to alleviate the pressure on

Southern Africa that brings all energy stakeholders

the national grid in the short term. An immediate

in the region together. The SAEE has enjoyed

solution is, however, needed to meet the challenge

tremendous success towards achieving its goals in

within the national electrical capacity and energy

consolidating energy-efficiency stakeholders in the

constraints.

Southern African region. The SAEE has members

The ability lies with the consumers of electricity

from nine countries. These countries are Botswana,

to increase the reserve margin on the grid through

Lesotho, Swaziland, Namibia, Zimbabwe, Malawi,

energy-efficiency to cater for planned and unplanned

Zambia, Mozambique and SA.

events on the grid, economic growth and the

In order to achieve this synergy, the SAEE is

accommodation of new loads and expansions.

hosting the 6th Southern African Energy Efficiency

Everybody needs to become more efficient, in their

Convention (2013SAEEC) as an event serving the energy

businesses and in their homes.

management,

environmental,

facilities

building

The rising cost of electricity, as well as the

upgrades, energy engineering, co-generation, power

incentives and penalties associated with the Power

generation, and efficiency improvement industries.

Conservation Programme will be a major driving

The 2013SAEEC is an important energy event of

force for energy efficiency on a national scale. Our

national scope for end-users and energy professionals

approach towards energy will determine our ability

in all areas of the energy field. It is the one truly

to be competitive in our various industries.

comprehensive forum where you can fully assess the

Improved efficiencies will also help SA in achieving

'big picture' – and see exactly how all the economic

international competitiveness and meet the various

and market forces, new technologies, regulatory

energy use and demand reduction targets set out by

developments and industry trends merge to shape

the Department of Minerals and Energy (DME) and the

the critical decisions on your organisation's energy

National Energy Regulator of SA.

and economic future.

It is critical that all sectors of our economy

The 2013SAEEC features a convention agenda with

become active in the management of energy as

seminars and an exhibition on a variety of current

a resource that must and can be managed to the

topics and a comprehensive overview of the 'Energy

benefit of their bottom-line. This goes hand-in-hand

Efficiency @ Work'.

with an increase in knowledge of energy, how it is

The 2013SAEEC together with the exhibition

consumed and how it can be utilised more efficiently.

targets the complete spectrum of technologies and

The Southern African Association for Energy Efficiency (SAEE) recently aired their 100th radio show 'The Green Hour' on Nelson Mandela Bay’s community radio station KingfisherFM. The radio show, which was started in mid 2011 by presenter Gareth Burley (pictured), aimed to educate and empower listeners to save energy and keep the lights on as the country faces an energy crisis. Dubbed the ‘national conversation on energy efficiency’, this energy-saving focussed radio show attracted listeners from around the country through the live streaming available through the stations website. In 2012 Eskom recognised the excellent work done on the show and presented them with the national eta Award for Energy Efficiency Awareness, and at a

‘The Green Hour' gets a ton S G 68

ceremony in the US, the Association for Energy Engineers (AEE) awarded The Green Hour with the 2012 International Best Community Award. Burley made special mention of the amazing guests and partners who have supported the show including the SAEE, Nelson Mandela Bay Business Chamber, the Regional Innovation Forum and Eskom. He says: ‘The Green Hour will continue to share these good-news green-stories of not only the Nelson Mandela Bay region but from across the country for many shows to come! We have lots of work to still do.’ The Green Hour airs on KingfisherFM SpecSavers BIG Breakfast on Wednesdays 8-9am. For more info contact easterncape@saee.org.za or listen at www.greenhour.saee.org.za.


services of great importance to our delegates,

technologies; energy services and project financing;

including:

applications

renewable

and

alternative

energy;

combined heat and power/cogeneration/distributed

to

national

energy

management

programs; and bio-fuels.

generation; lighting efficiency; hvac systems and

There is arguably no better way to find the

controls; integrated building automation and

immediate answers you need, and to assess the full

energy management; thermal storage and load

scope of potential energy solutions available to you,

management; boilers and combustion controls;

than by attending 2013SAEEC.

demand-side management; solar and fuel cell

For info see ad below.

SG

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Energy

Energy expert to train in SA Renowned international expert in energy conservation, energy management, urban sustainability and performance contracting, Dr Stephen A Roosa (pictured, left), will be presenting the US-based Association for Energy Engineers (AEE) Certified Renewable Energy

Professional (REP) training course in SA at its launch in November. We find out more.

T

he Energy Training Foundation (EnTF), the approved

training partner of the AEE for the SA region and training provider for the SA Association of

Energy Efficiency (SAEE), will be presenting the first certification program in SA designed to recognise the expertise and experience of professionals involved in the specification and application of renewable and alternative energy technologies, assessment of renewable energy projects, and development of achievable low-carbon and sustainability goals for organisations.

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The course covers:

Renewable energy basics. The latest developments in wind power systems, solar thermal heating, photovoltaic generation, geothermal heating, electrical production, biofuels, waste-to-energy systems, energy storage, fuel cells, hydroelectric power, ocean thermal energy.

The POWER of the National Energy Barometer Survey

Assessments of the various forms of renewable energy.

Case examples of renewable energy projects. Strengths and weaknesses of renewable energy applications.

Using

renewable energy solutions in building applications.

Opportunities for using renewable energy. Strategies for making a business case for using renewables.

Economic

issues, financial methodologies and

incentives.

The National Energy Barometer Survey (NEBS) is a FREE national benchmarking service to compile an accurate comparison database so that each building owner can track performance over time, and to compare consumption against others in the same industry. • •

Approval processes. Installation. Lessons learned and pitfalls to avoid.

• •

Dr Roosa holds a PhD from the University of Louisville in

Know where you building(s) rank against the average in your category Facility managers can benchmark portfolios of buildings against each other Track your performance when you enter year after year Identify the potential energy savings you could be achieving in your category

Planning and Urban Development, and his dissertation

Building categories

concerned sustainable development policies for urban

• • • • • • •

environments. He currently holds the position of account executive with a leading energy services company in Louisville, Kentucky. He has over 25 years' experience in commercial energy management and performance contracting. Past experience includes energy studies for over 3  500 buildings with over $50m in energy conservation and management projects developed for various customers. Dr Roosa is a Certified Sustainable Development Professional, Certified Energy Manager, a Certified Indoor

Air

Quality

Professional,

a

Certified

Measurement & Verification Professional, a Certified Energy Monitoring and Control System Designer, a Certified Demand Side Management Specialist, a

Shopping centres Corporate headquarters General office buildings Car dealerships Banks Hotels Hospitals

Register for the 2012 Utility Year before 23 September 2013

Follow these easy steps • • • •

Logon to www.energybarometer.com Register as a participant Enter the required details for your building(s) category Enter the energy use from your utility account

info@energybarometer.com

Certified Building Energy Management Professional, and a LEED Accredited Professional.

Supported by:

The REP course will be held from 18-21 November 2013 at Emperors Palace, Gauteng. After writing the prescribed REP examination, and receiving a 70% pass-mark, a candidate may apply for international

Media partners

recognition through certification, in accordance with the requirements of the AEE.

SG

Visit www.energytrainingfoundation.co.za

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Energy

local gvt l S G 72


leader

We take a look at Nelson Mandela Bay Municipality's energy development program which is steaming ahead – especially with energy management, the provision of heavy current supply and skills development.

T

he Nelson Mandela Bay Municipality's (NMBM) Electricity and Energy Directorate has, since 2005, pioneered the development of energy

management and heavy current engineering skills. The metro has benefitted with improved quality and cleaner supplies and the engineering industry with more skills. According to the municipality, during this period the following has been achieved: 108 personnel have been trained and 35 five trainees have been employed; It has become the first Electricity and Energy Directorate to offer embedded generation to its consumers; It has enjoyed recognition of being a leader in energy management; and It has seen the implementation of several renewable and energy efficiency projects.

Skills development Much progress has been made by this municipality with regard to developing heavy current engineering personnel over the past six years. All the trainees who

have

completed

the

skills

development

program have found employment, either filling vacancies in NMBM, or elsewhere in South Africa, particular in government departments. Trainees are afforded experience and as a result competencies are imparted. This process has equipped the unemployed to be employable as a result of the experience gained. More than 100 trainees have benefited from this training and mentoring. A four-year skills development program has been created covering heavy current engineering and limited energy management

technologies.

The

trainees

are

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equipped to effectively register with ECSA and other registration bodies as professionals. This progress – and the consequent trust generated by it – has resulted in National Treasury committing R6m for the first year and then to continue this roll out of funding for the next five years with good prospects of increasing this annual allocation. National Treasury is supporting and growing this successful programme so that the E&E can become a feeder of engineering skills to the

The vision of a greener city cannot be fully realised unless more space is created and an authentic model of green technology is demonstrated. Creating this image and the relevant workforce would enable effective service to the growing green needs of the public.

other Eastern Cape municipalities. It is proposed to expand the training in order to develop the skills required for the energy management sub-directorate. Some of the other achievements that can be noted due to the skills development principles that have been applied are as follows: The AMEU Southern Africa at its national convention in 2009 granted a best paper and presentation award at its convention for the presentation done on 'Skills Development and

females. 13 trainee technicians have completed their National Diploma. The department has also racked numerous other achievements with regards to increasing skills and improving performance delivery.

Renewable energy In the light of growing demands for wind farms,

Staff Retention', describing the methods applied

solar projects, biomass, demand-side management

within the Project's Sub-Directorate of the

applications and the implementation of embedded

Electricity and Energy Directorate.

generation projects the following goals must be

SANEA, the South African National Energy

achieved:

Association, at its national gala event 2010

an energy management sub-directorate

applauded the efforts achieved within the

a new green building

Electricity and Energy Directorate regarding

green, as well as heavy current, skills

skills development and an award of

development

commendation was received in the Education category. Only one permanent member of staff has resigned over the past five years within the

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undergoing training with us of whom six are

Green building The Electricity and Energy Directorate plans to increase its energy management services to

technical sections of the Projects Division where

develop a greener city and effectively partner with

high staff turnover had been experienced in the

SANEDI, SAEE, NCPC, Eskom, education institutions

past.

and the NMBM Business Chamber. This vision cannot

A marked improvement in the number of

be fully realised unless more space is created

applicants applying for engineering positions.

and an authentic model of green technology is

Just prior to the introduction of the skills

demonstrated. Creating this image and the relevant

development structures in 2006 only ten people

workforce would enable effective service to the

applied for engineering positions within Projects

growing green needs of the public. In addition, more

in response to a national advertisement. In

trainees could be developed and employed within a

2009 an advert for those same positions was

scarce skills sector. It is an opportune time for the

published and in excess of 90 applications

Electricity and Energy Directorate together with

were received. In addition a number of

its partners to move forward with these matters,

engineers have contacted our offices looking for

says this department, which intends to have a

opportunities to work within our utility.

green building to help establish 'a well-resourced

There is a positive working environment that

Energy Management Sub-Directorate', including the

exists across different race groups and genders.

development of trained personnel with both heavy

There are currently 9 trainee technicians

current and green renewable energy skills.

SG


Home

LOCKINGTHELEAK On average, SA loses almost 50% of tap water – worth a whopping R7bn a year – according to a recent report commissioned by the Water Research Commission (WRC). But there is light at the end of the tunnel. A uniquely South African solution may yet save the day.

A

new water-saving system was installed

Chris De Wet Steyn, said that his company had

recently on trial at a Motherwell, Port

been asked to demonstrate their high-tech, low-cost

Elizabeth, school which ended up saving

system in light of the large amount of water loss

them up to 85% of their normal monthly water

taking place at the schools in the Bay area. Gerald

bill. It also saved a substantial amount on their

Smith from GIBB Consulting and the technical officer

sewerage service charge – a total saving of almost

at water and sanitation for Nelson Mandela Bay

R30 000 for the month.

Metro, Shannon Barkes, had invited De Wet Steyn to

This means that the Douglas Mbopa School

run the pilot trial installation.

would have paid for the installation of the trial

'Douglas Mbopa Senior Secondary was the ideal

AquaTrip system in its first month. Little wonder

location for the test,' said De Wet Steyn. The school

that Eastern Cape schools and the Nelson Mandela

has 1350 learners and in excess of 30 staff in a

Metro are so excited about potential saving the

27-year-old building. 'They were losing a lot of

installation of this Water Saving System offers.

water from the ablution facilities which are prone

Port Alfred-based AquaTrip SAs sales director,

to leaks, negligence and vandalism,' said De Wet

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Steyn. He says he felt sure that his system would result in considerable saving in the water bill of the school, which 'can ill afford such high expenses'. But AquaTrip was in for a shock. De Wet Steyn says he had never imagined that his company’s system would rack up such savings for the school. In the month-long trial the water bill was slashed from R16 500 to a mere R3 138. Add the R11 232 that the system saved on sewerage fees for the month and it totals R29 848 – or almost R360 000 a year. De Wet Steyn says that Metro’s Barkas and consultant Smith were overwhelmed by the results of the pilot project and he expects orders to flow in – which will stop wasted water from flowing out. AquaTrip SA sees itself as a socially-responsible company and only uses local plumbing graduates from the FET Colleges to install their systems – under guidance of an onsite company representative. They are considering moving the manufacture of the product, patented worldwide, from Taiwan to SA once local installations increased. 'The savings these schools enjoy can be spent

To put water loss in perspective, the figures below illustrate how quickly leaks accumulate over time. (Water costs = approx R7.42/kL) A single tap losing a drop per second (1mL) will waste 3.6L/hour, or 86L/day or over 30 000L/year = R222.60 per year. A toilet with a silent leak (2mL per second) will waste around 7L/hour or 172L/day or 60 000L/year

on upgrading facilities like libraries, science

= R445.20 per year.

departments and sports centres,' says De Wet

An audibly leaking toilet will waste up to 5L/minute

Steyn enthusiastically. 'I believe we will also instil

or 300L/hour or 50 000L in one week = R371 per

a water-saving culture through these initiatives at

week.

these schools.'

A burst pipe or tap left fully open will waste

He envisages creating a corps of young ‘Water Warriors’ who could 'emerge and choose a career in water management'.

SG

Further info on the pilot project can be obtained from Gerald Smith of GIBB Consulting on 083 433 9940 or Shannon Barkes at Nelson Mandela Bay Metro on 082 459 7499 or 041 506 2443. For more info on the product, contact Chris De Wet Steyn at chris@aquatrip.com, or see ad, right.

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How much water and money can it save?

around 60L/minute or 86 000L/day or 600 000L in a week = R638.12 per day or R4 452 per week. In a community of 50 000 residential properties there will be approx 750 000 water fittings, at a conservative estimate, if 4% (30 000) of the taps, fittings or appliances lose a drop per second this will equate to filling up 15 000 average size swimming pools or just pouring over 600 million litres of purified water down the drain annually = R4.4m a year.


START SAVING WATER AND MONEY TODAY

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THE NO-DROP CAMPAIGN The Department of Water Affairs is pleased to announce the roll-out of the 'No Drop' report assessments that are part of efforts to increase water use efficiency and to reduce leakages from the water supply networks. The 'No Drop' assessments are being implemented across all municipalities in SA from October 2013 to March 2014 and the results will be released every two years. Results of this first assessment period will be published in the Blue Drop/No Drop Report in 2014. We take a closer look.

A

ccording to research data from 132 (of 237 municipalities) representing 75% of the total volume of municipal water supply, the current level of non-revenue water is estimated at 36.7%, of which 25.4% is considered to be losses through physical leakages. The 'No Drop' assessments will provide verified data to support and build on these research results. It will provide the public and the water sector with information on water use, water loss and efficiency of water used within a municipality. Similar to the Blue Drop – and Green Drop reporting – the 'No Drop' Report will publish audited and verified values pertaining to water use and management thereof in each local municipality, and will report such figures as part of the Blue Drop scorecard. This will allow the public to view the performance and rating of a municipality in terms of its drinking water quality and management of its water volumes. The 'No Drop' assessment deals with water loss (quantity) aspects, while the Blue Drop assessment deals with drinking water quality aspects. Ageing

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infrastructure, inadequate maintenance and repairs of existing infrastructure, long response time to water leaks/bursts, technical competency shortcomings in municipalities and a culture of water wastage are some of the challenges facing the SA water sector. South Africa is a water-scarce country and supply-demand curve shows that SA will face a supply-demand deficit of around 17%, or 3.8 billion kilolitres of water by the year 2030. The Minister of Water Affairs has prioritised the implementation of measures to reduce water losses and increase water-efficiency, as well as tackling water leaks and raising water demand awareness. She further urged the private sector to work closely with the public sector to 'close the water gap by 2030’. This new initiative builds on the success of the Blue and Green Drop Certification Programmes, the Department of Water Affairs innovative means of regulation, designed and implemented with the objective of improved water management. For more info visit www.dwa.gov.za


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Energy

news

Solar cell hits new world record with 44.7% efficiency

Researchers at the German Fraunhofer Institute for Solar Energy Systems have achieved a new world record for the conversion of sunlight into electricity using a new solar cell structure with four solar subcells. It took three years of research on this particular solar technology to hit the new world record of 44.7%. This type of solar cell is used in concentrator photovoltaics (CPV). Phys.org reports, 'The terrestrial use of so-called III-V multi-junction solar cells, which originally came from space technology, has prevailed to realise highest efficiencies for the conversion of sunlight to electricity. In this multi-junction solar cell, several cells made out of different III-V semiconductor materials are stacked on top of each other. The single subcells absorb different wavelength ranges of the solar spectrum.' The solar cells developed in the Fraunhofer labs are manufactured by Soitec. So far, the company has produced solar cells for installations in Italy, France, South Africa and California, as well as in 14 other countries.

Did you know?

How to build a solar-powered still to purify drinking water Click here for more.

90% of US nuclear regulators to be furloughed

The US Nuclear Regulatory Commission announced recently that it expects to furlough 3 900 employees soon due to budget shortages. That’s 90% of the agency’s workforce, which is responsible for the safety of 100 commercial nuclear reactors at 63 sites across the US.

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French biochemist Pierre Calleja has designed an eco-lamp that cuts CO2 emissions. It runs completely free of electricity, powered solely by a tube filled with glowing green algae.


Vestas wins order for 42mW from German wind power plant

Vestas is pleased to announce a firm and unconditional order for 42mW from Bordelum III GmbH & Co KG for their citizen-owned wind power plant in northern Germany. The turbines will be installed in Bordelum at the west coast of Schleswig-Holstein. Turbine delivery was planned to start in the fourth quarter of 2013 and commissioning is expected to start in the first half of 2014. The contract comprises supply, installation and commissioning of 14 V112-3.0mW wind turbines, along with a VestasOnline Business SCADA solution as well as a 15-year full-scope service agreement (AOM 4 000). Says Thomas Richterich, President of Vestas Central Europe: 'This project allows the citizens in the local community to directly support the change in the energy mix towards renewables. It is thus the active and self-designed implementation of the desired energy revolution in Germany that becomes reality just in front of our homes. This can currently be achieved with Vestas V112-3.0mW turbines. This wind power plant generates additional regional value for our community,' says Harm Truelsen, one of the managing directors of the wind power plant. 'The first wind power plant owned by local residents in our region was built in the mid-90s. The fact that nearly 700 of 2 000 local residents have invested in this project shows the high level of acceptance of renewable energy.'

Critical milestone for nuclear fusion power

Researchers at the National Ignition Facility (NIF) in Livermore, California recently made a major breakthrough for nuclear fusion by focusing 192 beams from the worlds most powerful laser on a tiny pellet of hydrogen and actually generating more energy than was absorbed by the fuel. If unlocked, nuclear fusion could supply the entire planet with a virtually unlimited source of clean energy. Scientists have been working towards nuclear fusion for many years. It’s the same process that powers the sun, and if it were replicated on Earth it could massively reduce the planet’s dependency on carbon-based fuels. Unfortunately, it has long been relegated to the realm of science fiction and comic books – but that could change with the NIF in Livermore‘s new findings. Until now, experiments have always used more power than they created – but in the facility’s latest trial the amount of energy released through the fusion reaction exceeded the amount of energy being absorbed by the fuel. Currently, there are inefficiencies in the fusion system which mean that not all the energy supplied through the laser is delivered to the fuel, but give it a few years and scientists could make another massive leap towards a fossil fuel-free future.

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Motoring News

New York Au

Car fuel made from landfill methane

California’s Clean Energy Fuels has just announced that they have begun the sale of a car fuel made with methane that they source from landfill sites. It’s already projected to do remarkably well; the company expects to sell 15 million gallons of Redeem biogas in California this year at 40 filling stations as well as to a customer base that includes SuperShuttle and Hertz. The primary benefit of landfill-sourced methane is that we don’t have to frack for it – thus no irradiated rivers or unexpected earthquakes caused by its production. But it turns out there are other enviro-benefits too: Clean Energy’s CEO explained to the New York Times that 'Redeem can burn 90% cleaner than diesel'. Additionally, the removal of methane gas from landfill does have some impact on reducing the gas’s significant enviro-impact. Methane is the second most prevalent source of human-driven greenhouse gas emissions, and landfill sites are the third-largest source of those emissions. Furthermore, because of the source of the gas, it counts as a renewable source of energy. For several years now those working in agriculture and waste management have developed ways to capture methane for both transportation and electricity needs, but it appears to have come as something of a surprise to industry experts to see the biogas developed as a commercially available car fuel quite so quickly. Tim Carmichael, who leads the California Natural Gas Vehicle Coalition, explained to the NYT that many had not even expected to see it hit the market this decade. While the gas is relatively expensive to produce, current California incentives enable Clean Energy Fuels to sell Redeem for about the same price as conventional natural gas, and for far less than diesel. It’s enviro-credentials serve as a selling point to owners of large fleets who have already switched over to vehicles that run on natural gas, but are looking for a fuel that is less destructive and poorly-perceived by the public. Clean Energy Fuels, who is backed by T Boone Pickens, is currently 'developing a nationwide network of natural gas pumps and plans to introduce the fuel elsewhere as well.' Using the gas that escapes from rotting trash to power our cars might provoke a certain 'ick' factor, but it’s certainly a whole lot better than injecting a secretive range of chemicals into the earth to provide green energy.

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The recent show introduced the hottest new hybrids and EVs – from Mercedes-Benz' B-Class Electric Drive (pictured above) to Nissan's Pathfinder hybrid (pictured, right), BMW's Active Tourer plug-in (pictured, below). The Ford Fusion Energi debuted and is Ford’s newest plug-in hybrid and is capable of delivering up to 21 miles in electric-only mode. Also, Subaru's first venture into the world of hybrid vehicles was introduced by way of the XV Crosstrek Hybrid.


uto Show 2013

Volkswagen's hover car concept

We're all still anxiously waiting for the day when floating cars arrive to fulfil all of our sci-fi fantasies and let us know, beyond any doubt, that we're living in the future. Well one new Volkswagen concept offers a humorous glimmer of hope. Volkswagen's new promotional video for a concept car that travels by using magnetic force to float is a tantalisingly well-executed view of what the future of automobiles might look like. The video is the end result of a contest in China in which the public was asked to create their vision of the perfect 'People's Car'. In the video the floating bubble vehicle displays automated driving and even an accident prevention feature. Although the entire video (see below) is in Chinese, the CG effects and humour of the presentation make it a must see clip.

WATCH THIS!

New York International Auto Show 2013

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2013

Event ICFF 2013 – the largest

sustainable designs showcase of contemporary furnishings in the US – kicked off recently in New York. We take a look.

Nervous System Nervous System unveiled a stunning series of digitally-printed lamps that are inspired by the branching patterns of veins in leaves. Befitting the biomimetic design, the lamps are dubbed Hyphae. The delicately formed lamps perfectly balance high-tech manufacturing techniques with natural forms and produce zero-waste in the manufacturing process. Nervous System took more inspiration from the shapes and patterns of nature to create an app that lets users design their own 'cellular' wooden coffee tables. Once a customer is happy with their online design, Nervous System uses a CNC router to carve it out of plywood. Larger holes are filled in with glass panels while smaller holes are left empty, creating an organic feel.

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Colin Selig San Francisco Bay Area-based designer Colin Selig repurposes old propane tanks to create an amazing array of couches and chairs. The smooth, sculptural seats require no extra material, and Selig has plans to license the design so that local craftspeople can manufacture them around the world. 'It began with this junk propane tank on my property,' Selig explains. 'A lot of energy had been used to form the thick steel into this shape and it seemed a shame to let it go to waste.' The chairs, couches and loveseats are made by cutting out chunks of the tanks and then welding them together. Selig is able to make four pieces out of each tank and at the end, only 1% is leftover. They also meet standards for LEED material credits since they are made of 99% post-consumer recycled content.

RISD Students Use Recyclable Composites RISD (Rhode Island School of Design) students unveiled

Recyclable Composites – an innovative collection of furniture made of Twintex, a cutting-edge fully recyclable plastic composite. Because the material doesn't have resins, products made with this material can simply be melted down and used again. The results of their brave experimentation with this new material were absolutely stunning. The students also created intricately-woven stools, lamps, ultra-lightweight chairs and a gravity-defying

Dirk Vander Kooij

table supported by strands of thread. The large

The Satellite floor lamp, recently revealed at Milan

design rely heavily on resins, which render them

Design week is made from recycled CD cases.

un-recyclable. Twintex however, is a 'commingled

majority of composite materials suitable for furniture

glass and thermoplastic polypropylene fibre filament'

WATCH THIS!

which can be used like string, and then baked in an oven to harden into a solidified mass.

Meystyle LED Wallpaper

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WATCH THIS! Urbio Indoor Garden System Urbio is a system of mix and match modular planters and organisers that snap into place with high-strength magnets. The series of various sized containers allow for the creation of a personalised wall garden, an elegant centrepiece, or a space-saving solution for organising your home office. Urbio came from a collaboration between designers Beau Oyler and Jared

Urbio Kickstarter Video

Aller, who debuted their idea through Kickstarter.

Tomomi Sayuda Sayuda's paper lanterns are crafted from handwoven Japanese paper, with the delicate swirls of colour which softly infuse a room with light in the form of a cluster of flower blooms in Spring. Grouped together, the Daydream lamps have a truly fantastical effect, creating a scene from a Japanese Sakura Garden with its gorgeous floating luminosity effect. Alone, the lamps bring a warm glow and organic feel to any room. Each of Sayuda’s Daydream lamps are handmade at her studio in London where the lamps take on the effect of a fresh-picked plant or flower.

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Jake Dyson's CSYS Lamp Extends the Life of Its LEDs by 37 Years Up until now, heat-sink technology has been used primarily in satellite technology, and Dyson is the first to use it in a consumer lighting context. Dyson set out to not only create a lamp for the future in terms of sustainability, but also in terms of practicality. The lamp’s arm is able to move back and forth on three axes, meaning it can not only go up and down like most desk lamps, but also back and forth and around in circles. This means the light can be moved up for a wide, diffuse light, or down for a task light. Furthermore, the LEDs give off a warm, golden light you might actually want to work in.

Hurbz Vegetable Spirit One of the top urban gardening solutions to debut at the show was the modular KiGA by Hurbz Vegetable Spirit. Designed as a kitchen garden for urban homes, the four different modules can be configured two ways – either lining a wall or grouped together in a cluster. The four-level garden brings the benefit of fresh vegetables and herbs to any household with ease and style, to fit any space. The four levels are also designed to fit inside each another, making for easy storage in a minimal, rectangular shape. The design cuts down on shipping costs and lets Hurbz ship the KiGA more efficiently.

The reCYCLER Founded by Gilbert Vanden Heuvel, this one-man design studio from Canada turns old bike parts into all kinds of awesome, eco-friendly interior furnishings. After making his first pedestal table with old bikes lying around his garage, he gradually began to experiment with other designs – merging glass, metal, old gear parts and other materials to create urban furniture with a green touch.

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Opiary Opiary’s self-irrigating table can be used inside or out, bringing a small vegetative garden to the dining table. The garden can support edible herbs for table use, mossy greens for a table terrarium, or flowers for a permanent centre piece. The irrigation system stretches within the table’s stand, to sightlessly feed the growing plants. The table top comes in glass, marble or wood, to suit any taste. All of Opiary’s planters are made from recyclable materials, leaving little impact on the environment. They can be used to plant virtually anything – trees, shrubbery, flowers or edible gardens. The larger organically-shaped planters are all mounted on castors, making it easy to rearrange and redesign your garden on a whim. Believing that living plants can be used in both form and function, Opiary even makes small planters in surprising places. A rich wood dining table is infused with sprouts of greenery, in tiny planters tucked under the tabletop, allowing ivy and moss to climb up from each table leg.

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Patrick Weder Brooklyn-based Weder’s

tubular

designer coral-like

Patrick lamps

are made from repurposed chicken coop wire and paper pulp. Fitted with energy-efficient LED bulbs, the lamps give off a warm glow as light emits through the twisting form. When unlit, the lamps appear to be almost opaque, revealing the 'bones' of the chicken wire, though only slightly. But when illuminated, the paper pulp material turns a warm and creamy hue, casting a comfortable and relaxing glow.

BRC Designs' 'Pipe Dream' furniture Benjamin Rollins Caldwell of BRC Designs is a favourite recycled furniture maker because of the skilful way he reinvents old materials. Resembling a maze of copper tubing similar to the system of pipes Mario travels through with Luigi, in the Nintendo game series, the revamped table and chair turn a rather mundane material into something spectacular. Caldwell used half-inch copper piping for the designs, looping and meandering it into a maze that was inspired by the Windows pipe dream screen saver. Both the table and chair were finished with fine glass bead blasting and sealed using an industrial metal sealer.

Monstrans' Bamboo Chair Design company Monstrans‘ newest chair is made from a single sheet of renewable bamboo plywood, putting a clever spin on the classic folding chair. The Folding Chair is portable and saves space, folding up into a single piece with a handle. Aside from being efficient and useful, the chair also yields minimal construction waste and material use.

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Home

Vinyl flooring can be S G 90

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Photo www.traviata.co.za

green'

It's not always the latest breakthrough product that's the best fit for a particular need. Sometimes it's an old concept that's been re-engineered to give it properties with a 'green' up-side. For those of you who grew up with vinyl flooring, it might come as a surprise that this is one such product. We take a closer look.

W

hether building from scratch or doing a renovation there is always a flooring solution needed. These days there are plenty of

options that were not around a few decades or even a few years ago. There are some obvious options such as bamboo which comes with great sustainability credentials, but if you dig a bit deeper and look at product make up, the manufacturing process and the organisation behind the product there are certainly some alternatives.

How does vinyl shape up? Modern vinyl flooring products are not the old stick-down tiles or the gaudy cushion sheet vinyl South Africans grew up with. For a start vinyl is one of the only plastics made mostly from a 'non-petroleum' source. PVC is made from 43% petroleum-extract and 57% sodium chloride. The sodium chloride (salt) is derived from sea water, which goes through electrolysis to release chlorine, and is then combined with ethylene, a petroleum derivative, to create ethylene chloride, the monomer that is polymerised into PVC. For use as a flooring product, plasticisers are added to what is basically a brittle product. Stabilisers now used include zinc, calcium and tin which have replaced the toxic heavy metals lead and cadmium which were commonly used in the past. Both lead and cadmium have been proved to have adverse effects on health and the environment so their omission is certainly an improvement. While vinyl is a thermoplastic and can be 100% recycled without loss of performance, the Traviloc Allure flooring in SA is produced from 100% virgin vinyl. This allows it to be classed as 'resilient flooring' and to comply with the stricter European norms in terms of volatile organic compound (VOC) emissions

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as it is completely free from formaldehyde and DOP

Provide a safe and healthy place to work with

carpets, notebook covers, and high explosives,

minimal impact on the environment through

such as Semtex, it was among the most common

the intelligent use of materials and resources

plasticisers, but now is suspected of causing

in all aspects of doing business, and in the

cancer). Instead of using toxic, VOC-rich adhesives, this flooring solution uses a patented locking system and is installed as a 'floating' floor.

construction of a LEED Platinum Certified office building.

Certification

Traviloc's long service life-cycle (it now carries

Like any claim in the 'green' field, it is important

a 'lifetime' warranty for residential use) reduces the

to see what independent certification there is in

enviro-impact of more frequent replacement and

support of what is being said. The company's

disposal. This product consumes very little energy

products and processes boast:

in its maintenance requiring only sweeping and a

A LEED Certified Service Centre Building.

damp mop for general cleaning. Very little by way

Floor Score Certified products which meet the

of water, chemicals or detergents is required.

stringent indoor air quality standards for office,

Sustainability commitment Vertex, the manufacturer of the Traviloc Allure flooring system, is a global player based in the

classroom and residential use. All of its manufacturing facilities are ISO 14000 certified.

US with 23 manufacturing facilities across the US,

Resource re-use

Canada, the UK, Asia and South America. This

Vertex say it recognises the need for conservation of

company states that as a member of the global

natural resources and, as a result, water is re-used

society it realises its responsibilities go beyond

in their 'clean and enviro-conscious' manufacturing

the maximisation of profits and says it is therefore

facilities.

committed to becoming a responsible partner in

'We are very proud to be an influence in creating

today's world. To this end it has homed in on key

clean manufacturing here and overseas. In addition,

sustainability elements both in the product and in

we have begun testing the process of taking used

its methods of operation, and submit to regular

products back at the end of their life-cycle to be

social and enviro-audits.

re-used and recycled into new flooring. Beside a longer life and cleaner manufacturing,

Corporate behaviour

recycling and other elements, this flooring also

The company says it is committed to 'reducing the

contains certified low levels of VOCs, meeting

enviro-footprint of our operations and promoting

stringent indoor air quality standards.

safe and sustainable processes for doing business'. Among its stated goals are to:

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approach to the manufacturing of its products.

(Di-n-octyl phthalate, used in flooring materials,

So, is vinyl a product of the 21st century and beyond, rather than something best left in the 20th

Ensure the enviro-safety and quality of its

century's mid-decades? It would seem the answer is

products while reducing waste, embracing

yes, especially if the users have the sense to recycle

recycling and striving towards a cradle-to-cradle

this material once it has served its life purpose.

SG


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Home

TOP TIPS FOR

homeimprovement Now that summer's here, so grows the interest in embarking on some renovations to your home and property. With owning one's own home, so goes the realisation that maintenance is an ongoing effort. There are many ways to improve your home, both in terms of its comfort and 'enjoyability', as well as its value, by making some relatively small changes that do a lot. We take a look at some top tips for your home improvement project.

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B

efore you launch into a total revamp of you home, it is important to remember that it is not always the big things that make big

changes. Smaller steps, like getting more light into dark corners, fixing up the unfinished bits and pieces from previous upgrades, touch-ups where things are looking a slight bit tacky and so on, will all add up to an overall sense that your home has

Before you begin renovating, check your current home insurance policy to find out what you're covered for in case of an accident,

had a good and thorough spruce-up and spring

as many renovation plans

clean.

deviate from the 'standard

Fortunately it is so much easier to improve one's home nowadays with non-toxic and energy-efficient

construction' usually

materials. Many homeowners understand that they

covered.

can save money in the long run, despite the up-front costs, by choosing materials and strategies that will lower utility bills and reduce maintenance and replacement costs.

Measure – twice

So here are some important points to consider

Know how to take accurate measurements. Do not

before embarking on any project, be it big or small.

skip the prep work. Do it the right way – it saves so

Budget, budget, budget Make sure you do your homework. Talk to a friend

much time later on. And that's what you're trying to do: save yourself money and time.

who has been through a similar renovation, and do

Assess your foundations

as much window shopping and cost-comparisons

Go back to basics before you start ambitious

as possible. Make sure that you tack on at least an

renovation projects and look at the current

extra 20% for those inevitable issues that will spring

structural state of a house or room. There is no

up. Pay attention to details.

point in beginning to renovate only to find that the

Do your research It's really important before you embark on the

foundations are giving way or you need to have work done on the basic form.

renovation rollercoaster that you have a clear

Recycled content

understanding of what to expect. Don't be afraid to

Look

ask for help. Few people carry out major renovation

post-consumer or post-industrial recycled content

work entirely by themselves. Know your capabilities

that can be easily recycled later. Make sure the

and always be open to calling in an expert for a

materials are sustainably sourced – such as wood

second opinion. Get advice. And get referrals and

certified as sustainably harvested by the Forest

draw up your plans. Be as thorough as possible.

Stewardship Council (FSC). And try to minimise the

Plan twice, renovate once. Failing to plan and work

distance any building materials need to travel to

out what you really want also means you tend to

help reduce overall greenhouse gas emissions.

overspend.

for

building

materials

that

contain

Be realistic

Patching, plugging & replacing

Dreaming is the start of any good renovation,

In areas of the renovation that are not a complete

but to have a good experience you have to be

tear-down and re-build, tighten things up by

realistic about what you can accomplish based on

plugging holes, patching or replacing roofing or

your budget, resources and your existing home.

siding as needed and adding weather-stripping

If you are absolutely committed to the dream of

around doors and windows. Also, switch out older

something that you can't afford, see if you are able

single-pane windows with more efficient modern

to renovate in stages.

double or triple pane styles. This can pay for itself

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in energy savings within just a few years while improving comfort.

Insulation & lighting Wherever possible, add insulation to walls, attics and other spaces to keep heat inside and cold out and vice-versa. Also, whether you exchange windows for French or add skylights, light is vital in a welcoming home. A mistake that homeowners often make is not taking into consideration the

At the end of the day, there's nothing more rewarding than watching a space being transformed by good design decisions and great workmanship.

lighting in their home. The lighting in your home can completely change the colours, the feeling, and the ambiance. There are really three main types of lighting: general lighting, task lighting and drama or accent lighting. You need a combination to have a really good end design and feel.

Appliances When you can, swap out old appliances with newer models that qualify for EnergyStar label. Such appliances must be 20-30% more energy efficient than standard models, and will reduce not only your carbon footprint but also utility bills.

Plan your plugs & electrics People sometimes forget about electrics when they are renovating because it's costly and hidden. Best to walk through the house with the electrician before you start to talk about outlets, where they are and where you want new outlets. You want to make sure everything is up to code. When renovating, always plan around electrical sockets and power points. Whereas furniture is relatively easy to move around and adapt to a new space, the location of your plugs is one of the most important things to consider when redesigning a room, especially if you have a lot of electronic devices and chargers.

Know your paint People often make the mistake of picking the wrong paint for whatever particular project they may be working on. Generally the flat paint is for your ceilings and sometimes for your walls; whereas your semi-gloss would be for trim in a bathroom or in a dining room. Glossy will give it a more upscale look. However it is also advisable to choose paints free of VOCs (volatile organic compounds) as these paints' fumes are toxic to humans and animals alike.

Test it out It's easy to get carried away when you renovate so take some time to double and triple check that you're happy with what you'll be changing. Do test patches of paint on small areas and view it at different times of the day in different lights.

Pro or DIY Decide whether you are going to hire professionals or do the renovating yourself. Hiring others to do the work for you may be more expensive, but if you are an inexperienced renovator, it may be the best option for you.

Find the right contractor Generally the best contractors can be found through word of mouth, but do make sure you get several referrals before you sign any agreements. Do some thorough research. Remember that your builder will be spending a lot of time in your home, and therefore should be someone you feel comfortable with. Good communication and a professional relationship are very important if you want the project to run smoothly. Reputable builders will always want to do their best work for you from the very start.

Renovate for the future Trends are for accessorising, not for renovating. When something is trendy it simply means that it's short term. A rule of thumb for renovating is that doing a high-quality job in a classic style is always the best. Stick to clean lines and elegant colours. If you invest in quality finishes now, you won't regret it. If your budget won't stretch, then stick to the mid-range – never just choose the cheapest products. You want something that's going to stand the test of time.

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Stick to a schedule

Insure your home

Almost 85% of renovation projects take longer than

Before you begin renovating, check your current

people expect. Although there are often delays

home insurance policy to find out what you're

that are beyond your control, try to stick to a strict

covered for in case of an accident, as many

schedule. However, it is also important to anticipate

renovation

chaos and to be accommodating.

construction' usually covered. You may also want to

Know your tools It is imperative that you know the correct tools to

plans

deviate

from

the

'standard

look into reinsuring your home after the renovation if the work has added sufficient value to the house.

use for the various renovation upgrades otherwise

Green upgrades

leave it to the experts. It is also important that all

If you're doing your renovation 'green', you're really

your tools are properly stored, such as a cool dry

ahead of the market right now. So going green is a

place in particular.

very smart investment indeed.

Safety is key

Have fun

Always ensure you wear goggles for your eyes, ear

Lastly, try to have some fun. At the end of the day,

muffs to protect against excessive noise and dust

there's nothing more rewarding than watching a

masks to protect your airways. Keep tools, paints

space being transformed by good design decisions

or flammable liquids away from young children and

and great workmanship. Better still is the day when

always exercise caution when using step ladders or

the work is done and you can enjoy the results in

drills. It is also imperative that you have a first-aid

the peace and quiet of your new space.

SG

kit readily available.

Quality suppliers of enviro-friendly German floor coatings & adhesives, as well as a superb range of wide board engineered flooring.

www.zimbostrading.co.za

Wooden Flooring, Decking & Loba Coatings



envirofriendly

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Home

pest control

I

t has been reported that pesticides remain in the average home often for decades after they have first been

used. Consequently, children and pets are vulnerable to exposure – either from residues or, in worst-case situations, because they have managed to get access to the toxins in storage, often with fatal results. A US Environmental

Protection

Agency

(EPA)

study

was

recently published in Environmental Science & Technology. It found that

It's impractical to think of eliminating creepy crawlies altogether. Ants, spiders, termites and wasps, among other creatures, are here to stay – and while we may not want them wandering around our kitchens or buzzing in the bedroom, they all play key roles in the local ecosystems.

about 165 pesticide compounds are probable or possible carcinogens and a link to pesticide exposure during pregnancy was made with leukemia. Other

pesticides

may

mimic

hormones and affect early childhood development, reproduction and other diseases. Pesticides have been linked to everything from Parkinson's disease to obesity, and they often stay on the market long after independent scientists have raised serious concerns about their safety. Most kitchen floors are laced with

pesticides – several known to be toxic and several that were banned decades ago.

The

most

commonly

found

pesticides are listed here in order of the most to least common: Permethrin (an insecticide found in some head lice treatments, pet flea and tick products and other insect repellents) was found in 89% of homes tested in the EPA study. Chlorpyrifos (an insecticide sold for decades for home use until 2001) was found in 78% of homes in that same study. Chlordane (an insecticide banned in 1984, but used for decades on home lawns and gardens before that) was found in 74% of homes.

fe a S

r

Piperonyl butoxide (a chemical used

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with pyrethrin and similar pesticides to

some over-the-counter products and other ant and 'roach killers) was found in 46% of homes. DDT (an insecticide banned in the US in

1972 but used widely to kill mosquitoes and other insects for decades before then) was found in 42% of homes. (DDE, a breakdown product of DDT was found in 33% of homes.) Fipronil (an insecticide found in some Frontline, TopChoice, Over'n Out! and Maxforce products) was found in 40% of homes. Diazinon (an insecticide used widely to kill ants, 'roaches and other pests, as well as lawn and garden pests, until household use was banned in 2004) was found in 35% of homes. While this was a US study looking at pesticide incidence in American homes, there's no good reason to believe much the same pattern does not exist in South African and other Westernised home environments. Most people simply don't realise that, with the possible exception of some of the pyrethroid pesticides (most of them man-made derivatives of pyrethrum as found in SA's khakibos plant), these chemicals remain stable and harmful for many years after they have been applied or sprayed.

kill wasps, ants, fleas and ticks, lice and

Natural options

other pests) was found in 52% of homes.

These facts alone provide good reasons

Cypermethrin (an insecticide found in

to avoid using pesticides whenever


www.bose.com

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9 Tips to control pests at home

Here are some tips and options for safer ways to control unwanted insects in the home: Investing in screens on doors and windows will keep out flies, mosquitoes and night flying insects such as moths. Make sure vents are screened as well. Keep your environment clean and fresh with natural products. It is one of the easiest ways of controlling pests in the home. Do not leave food or dirty dishes lying around. Clean food preparation areas thoroughly and be sure to clean under stoves, refrigerators and behind counters regularly. Certain herbs and plants have repellent properties. For example khakibos is widely found in SA and much of the rest of Africa and works well to repel ticks, fleas and flies. Using essential oils can work effectively to repel insects. Lavender essential oil, eucalyptus essential oil and citronella oil keep mosquitoes at bay. Planting citronella grass and marigolds around a home under windows can also work very effectively in repelling mosquitoes. Mosquito nets and/or the use of an oscillating fan at night work well to keep mosquitoes away without using harmful, chemical-based products on the skin. Lighting a citronella candle and applying some citronella oil or lavender essential oil will allow for a peaceful, mosquito-free evening outside. Caulking cracks eliminates insect hiding places. Traps such as pheromone, flypapers or light traps can be used to control pests without resorting to the use of dangerous chemicals. Many insects are attracted to moisture, especially in the dry season, so make sure taps do not drip and that any leaky pipes are repaired.

possible or to consider wiser options. Nowadays

with insect repellent is the best way to deal with

one can use natural, non-toxic pest control without

mosquitoes which, aside from their annoying buzz

resorting to dangerous pesticides, however it is

and capacity to disturb our needed sleep through

impractical to think of eliminating creepy crawlies

itchy bites, can also obviously infect us with malaria,

altogether. Ants, spiders, termites and wasps,

dengue fever and a clutch of other really nasty

among other creatures, are here to stay – and

diseases.

while we may not want them wandering around

With malaria remaining a top killer in Africa,

our kitchens or buzzing in the bedroom, they all

especially of children under five years of age,

play key roles in the local ecosystems. Many also

and costing many billions in lost productivity

play an important role in pest control themselves,

and treatment, this option may be considered

so exterminating them may simply cause a bug

appropriate for those who don't have the resources

infestation of a different kind. Even potentially

to go for less toxic options.

dangerous spiders, such as the black widow (in the

But even if you are on a safari to some

US) or the button spider in SA, can live in relative

malaria-infested zone, have taken the anti-malaria

harmony with man and help to control house flies,

meds before going and while in the at-risk destination

fruit flies and other insects around the home.

(and remembering that such medications have their

Many people think that smearing themselves

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own risks attached), you may still feel you have to


resort to insect repellent on your exposed skin. It is hard to argue against that, given that cerebral malaria remains a killer – and no-one who's ever had it wants another bout of malaria once they've recovered. Still, automatic use of potent chemical-based insect repellent on your skin during summer night braais (that's barbecues for non-South Africans) is simply not worth the risk you take in terms of building up toxicity within your system – there are more natural and safer ways of doing things, as we have pointed out above. There are, too, some rapidly decaying, less harmful pesticides coming onto the market for the odd occasion when other, less aggressive methods have failed. But if you are going to go anywhere near pesticides of any kind, even natural ones, it is always best to be well informed beforehand as to the risks and proper methods of application, as well as likely durations and methods of cleaning up any residues. These days, with the internet's vast array of information just clicks away, it makes sense to do some research and take the best option available, which almost always is the one with the least long-lasting and lowest toxicity or negative impact, beyond the specific pest invasion with which you are dealing.

SG

If you are going to go anywhere near pesticides of any kind, even natural ones, it is always best to be well informed beforehand as to the risks and proper methods of application, as well as likely durations and methods of cleaning up any residues.

Outdoor sleep just got more comfortable with the TM Protector If you love the outdoors but hate the thought of swatting away insects when you settle down to sleep then the TM Protector is for you. A first in protective bedding, the TM Protector combines science with technology to produce unique bedding products designed to repel a host of biting insects including mosquitos, fleas, sand flies, midges and bed bugs. The fabric is a non-woven, water-based material and a unique protecting solution is added during the finishing process. Durable and washable the TM undergoes a variety of treatments resulting in an effective and durable product remaining effective through countless washes. Reliable and comfortable, environmentally and user friendly, the TM Protector has a 90% proven effectiveness and is made of 70/30 polyester/polyamide.

ď Ť 10

We have 10 single sheets of the TM Protector to give away. Email your details, name and postal address to here by 30 November 2013 to stand a chance to win.

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Health

The ABCs OF AL S G 104


You're not alone if you suffer from allergies. In fact, millions of South Africans have them. Allergies can appear at any age, and can even disappear in childhood only to reappear in adulthood. Allergies of the ear, nose and throat are often annoying and create some discomfort, but they are rarely life-threatening. Giulia Criscuolo reports.

LLERGIES

A

llergy or hypersensitivity is an abnormal reaction to protein substances (called allergens) that occur naturally. If an allergic person is exposed

to these substances called allergens, the body's immune system reacts to them. White blood cells (B-lymphocytes) produce an antidote (antibody) against the allergen. The antibody sticks to the surface of the allergy cells. Now the body is ready to fight back the next time it is exposed to the allergen. This process is called sensitisation. After this change, there is an allergic reaction every time the body is exposed to the allergen. The allergen sticks to the antibodies on the surface of the allergy cells. This coupling causes the granula (little stores in the allergy cells) to release histamine, which causes the symptoms of allergy. Depending on the size of the exposure to the allergen and where on the body it happens, there will be an allergic reaction. The histamine dilates the blood vessels, causes the mucous membranes (lining tissues of the nose and airways) to swell due to the liquid leaking and stimulates the glands in the nose and the respiratory passages to produce mucus (phlegm). Substances that make the muscles of the respiratory passages contract are released along with the histamine. It becomes difficult to breathe and an asthma attack may follow.

What are allergens? Allergens are microscopic protein substances that are common and provoke allergic people to produce antibodies. The most common allergy provoking substances are: enviro-pollutants; pollen from weeds, grass and trees; mould (even in foods) and mould fungus; house dust mites; saliva and skin oils from cats, dogs and any animal or bird; medicines (such as penicillin); wasp and bee venom; and indoor plants.

Allergies of the nose Why is your nose so important, you might ask? It processes the air that you breathe before it enters your lungs. Most of this activity takes place in and on the

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WATCH THIS! Dust mites serve a valuable function, but these microscopic creatures can pose a risk to those susceptible to allergies

turbinates, located on the sides of the nasal passages.

in the nose. There are two types: allergic rhinitis and

In an adult, 18 000-20 000l of air pass through the nose

non-allergic rhinitis.

each day.

How your nose protects you Filtering all that air and retaining particles as small as a pollen grain with 100% efficiency; Humidifying the air that you breathe, adding moisture to the air to prevent dryness of the lining of the lungs and bronchial tubes; and Warming cold air to body temperature before it arrives in your lungs. For these and many other reasons, normal nasal function is essential. Inflammation of the nasal mucous membrane is called rhinitis. The symptoms include sneezing and runny and/or itchy nose, caused by irritation and congestion

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Allergic Rhinitis: This condition occurs when the body's immune system over-responds to specific, non-infectious particles such as plant pollens, moulds, dust mites, animal hair, industrial chemicals (including tobacco smoke), foods, medicines, and insect venom. During an allergic attack, antibodies, primarily immunoglobin E (IgE), attach to mast cells (cells that release histamine) in the lungs, skin, and mucous membranes. Once IgE connects with the mast cells, a number of chemicals are released. One of the chemicals, histamine, opens the blood vessels and causes skin redness and swollen membranes. When this occurs in the nose, sneezing and congestion are the result. Seasonal allergic rhinitis or hay fever occurs in late summer or spring. People can be allergic to all kinds of


allergens, such as grasses, trees, pollen, plants and so on. Perennial allergic rhinitis occurs year-round and can

can be difficult to separate from other causes. Here are some clues that allergy may be affecting your child.

result from sensitivity to pet hair, mould on wallpaper,

Children with nasal allergies often have a history of

houseplants, carpeting, and upholstery. Some studies

other allergic tendencies (or atopy). These may include

suggest that air pollution such as automobile engine

early food allergies or atopic dermatitis in infancy.

emissions can aggravate allergic rhinitis.

Children with nasal allergies are at higher risk for

Patients who suffer from recurring bouts of allergic

developing asthma.

rhinitis should observe their symptoms on a continuous

Nasal allergies can cause sneezing, itching, nasal

basis. If facial pain or a greenish-yellow nasal discharge

rubbing, nasal congestion and nasal drainage. Usually,

occurs, a qualified ear, nose, and throat specialist can

allergies are not the primary cause of these symptoms in

provide appropriate sinusitis treatment.

children under four years old. In allergic children, these

Non-Allergic Rhinitis: This form of rhinitis does not depend on the presence of IgE and is not due to an allergic reaction. The symptoms can be triggered by cigarette smoke and other pollutants as well as strong odours, alcoholic beverages, and cold. Other causes may include blockages in the nose, a deviated septum, infections, and over-use of medications such as decongestants.

symptoms are caused by exposure to allergens (mostly pollens, dust, mould, and dander). Observing which time of year or in which environments the symptoms are worse can be important clues to share with your doctor. Ear infections: One of children's most common medical problems is otitis media, or middle ear infection. In most cases, allergies are not the main cause of ear infections in children under two years old. But in older children,

Allergy as a cause for sore throat

allergies may play a role in ear infections, fluid behind the

The main culprit in an allergy-induced sore throat is

part of healthy ears.

eardrum, or problems with uncomfortable ear pressure.

postnasal drip. As unpleasant as it may sound, postnasal drip occurs when congestion drains down an allergy sufferer's throat, sometimes causing a tickling. That drainage can cause coughing, excess swallowing, and throat irritation. How do you know if your sore throat is the result of allergies? Generally allergies are seasonal. Even if you experience symptoms year-round, your symptoms will worsen during seasons of high airborne irritants, like springtime. Allergy symptoms generally include congestion, sneezing, and coughing, but are not accompanied by fever and aches. If you have sore throat symptoms with fever and aches, it is likely the result of a virus, like a cold or flu.

Diagnosing and treating allergies may be an important Sore throats: Allergies may lead to the formation of too much mucus which can make the nose run or drip down the back of the throat, leading to 'post-nasal drip'. It can lead to a cough, sore throats, and a husky voice. Sleep disorders: Chronic nasal obstruction is a frequent symptom of seasonal allergic rhinitis and perennial (year-round) allergic rhinitis. Nasal congestion can contribute to sleep disorders such as snoring and obstructive sleep apnea, because the nasal airway is the normal breathing route during sleep. Fatigue is one of the most common, and most debilitating, allergic symptoms. Fatigue not only affects children's quality of life, but has been shown to affect school performance.

an

Paediatric sinusitis: Allergies should be considered in

allergy-induced sore throat and one that has been

children who have persistent or recurrent sinus disease.

brought on by a virus is the scratchiness. Postnasal drip

Depending on the age of your child, their individual

isn't the only cause of a sore throat during allergies. Often

history, and an exam, your doctor should be able to help

particles will directly enter a person's respiratory system,

you decide if allergies are likely. Some studies suggest

also causing that scratchy feeling, in addition to the 'raw'

that large adenoids (a tonsil-like tissue in the back of the

feeling that results from drainage.

nose) are more common in allergic children.

How allergies affect your child's ear, nose & throat

How can allergies be managed?

Another

way

to

differentiate

between

Does your child have allergies? Allergies can cause many ear, nose, and throat symptoms in children, but allergies

Allergies are rarely life-threatening, but often cause lost work days, decreased work efficiency, poor school

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performance, and a negative effect on the quality of life. Considering the millions of rands spent on anti-allergy medications and the cost of lost work time, allergies cannot be considered a minor problem. For some allergy sufferers, symptoms may be seasonal, but for others they produce year-round discomfort. Symptom control is most successful when multiple approaches are used simultaneously to manage the allergy.

For some allergy sufferers, symptoms may be seasonal, but for others they produce year-round discomfort. Use multiple approaches simultaneously to manage the allergy.

When should a doctor be consulted?

When allergy or ear, nose or throat symptoms are not

The most appropriate person to evaluate allergy problems

When special diagnostic allergy tests are needed;

adequately controlled;

is an otolaryngologist (ear, nose, and throat specialist).

When specialised treatment such as immunotherapy

Aside from gathering a detailed history and completing a

is needed;

thorough examination of the ears, nose, throat, head, ENT

When other related ear, nose, and throat medical

doctors will offer advice on proper enviro-control. They

problems are present, such as: chronic sinusitis, nasal

will also evaluate the sinuses to determine if infection or

polyps, fluid in the middle ear, chronic ear infections,

structural abnormality (deviated septum and/or polyps,

deviated septum, vocal disturbances and/or enlarged

for example) is contributing to the symptoms.

adenoids or tonsils.

When should you see a specialist? Under the following circumstances, the patient

When complications associated with treatment or difficulty in controlling allergy symptoms are affecting the patient's quality of life.

should seek consultation with an Otolaryngic

Alternatively, a homeopath, naturopath or complementary

Allergist:

medicine practitioner can also be consulted, so as to

When the diagnosis of an ear, nose, or throat allergy or

get to the root cause of the problem, instead of just

cause of an ear, nose, or throat symptom is uncertain;

managing the symptoms.

SG

TRY THIS FOR YOUR ALLERGIES Homeopathic products such as Similasan surpass conventional medication as they aim to support your body’s natural defence system and strengthen the life force, whereas conventional medications just treat the symptoms, according to Giulia Criscuolo, pharmacist for health and wellness company Litha Pharma. Similasan Hay Fever Relief, Allergy Eye Relief and other Litha Pharma products available at health stores, pharmacies, Dis-Chem, Clicks, Pick n Pay, Medi-Rite, Wellness Warehouse and or call 011 516 1700 for more. Springbok Pharmacy. See www.similasan.com and

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Make slimming a whole lot easier!

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Here’s why: • It contains over 100 nutrients and all essential amino acids, chlorophyll, enzymes and anti-oxidants – everything your body needs. • Is a key building block for muscle tissue, essential for a lean and toned body. • Balances blood sugar levels. • Contains anti-oxidant and anti-inflammatory nutrients in one daily serving equivalent to five servings of vegetables. • Increases fat oxidation by 10.5%. • Stimulates metabolism. • Detoxifies and purifies. • Contains 60% plant protein. • Proven to increase energy and athletic performance. • One of the most complete whole foods available! • Marcus Rohrer Spirulina® complements a well-balanced diet. Guaranteed GMO-free and non irradiated * Marcus Rohrer Spirulina® is not a meal replacement

Lose weight, feel great Marcus Rohrer Spirulina® This product is to be used in conjunction with a healthy diet and exercise plan. For your FREE “Best Shape of Your Life” diet, please email info@leapcommunications.co.za Marcus Rohrer Spirulina® is available at health shops, independent pharmacies, Dis-Chem, Clicks, Pick n Pay, Medi-Rite and Springbok Pharmacy. Visit www.otcpharma.co.za or see www.marcusrohrerspirulina.com LITHA LITHA PHARMA Part of Litha Healthcare PHARMA Group Limited Call: +27 (0)11 516 1700

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Hot off the press POSTWINK

Separate your recyclables and organic (biodegradable) waste from your general  /  non-recyclable waste conveniently with this nifty new recycling bin. The Trio Pedal-Push recycling bin, distributed by Postwink, will easily fit in your kitchen and is not only nice looking, durable and practical, it is also cost-effective. Postwink will deliver to your door anywhere in SA, visit www. postwink.co.za.

 4

We have FOUR Postwink bins to give away. Email your name and full delivery address details here by 30 November 2013 to stand a chance to win.

BEM WIRELESS

 2

OGAMI REPAP PAPER

Experience Wireless sound with the latest cutting-edge technology BEM Wireless which connects to any smart, mobile phone. Each Speaker is entirely portable with Bluetooth ranges extending up to 120 feet and enjoying a minimum of 6 hours built-in battery. In keeping with the BEM Wireless brand, the modern design and soft touch features make this a uniquely appealing product to add to your high quality audio range. www.gvcafrica.com

We have TWO BEM Wireless speakers to give away. Email your name and full delivery address details here by 30 November 2013 to stand a chance to win.

Ogami presents its first collection of notebooks in paper made from stone. This innovative, revolutionary stone paper is called Repap and consists of 80% calcium carbonate and 20% non-toxic resin. The calcium carbonate in this 'paper' derives from material recovered from quarries and building industry waste. It is reduced to a fine powder and mixed with special non-toxic resins to create stone paper. There are a few unique characteristics to Repap: trees are not used in the production process and, unlike traditional or recycled paper, water is not used either; it is more resistant to tearing and atmospheric agents than traditional paper; it has a silky touch; and is photodegradable after a period of about 14-18 months. www.ogamicollection.com

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Endorsed by:

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www.simonsays.co.za | 5647


your green tv show guide The must-see shows for all things green, organic & healthy on the home front. NOVEMBER - december 2013 Double Your House for Half the Money

Decked Out

Mon 4pm • Wed 8pm • Thurs 8am • Fri 12pm

• Sun 4pm

It’s tougher than ever for property owners to move up the housing ladder, and more and more people end up stuck in properties they have outgrown. Sarah Beeny is on a mission to inspire people to dramatically grow the property they have by adding as much new space as possible, and re-configuring the interior completely to transform an ordinary house into an extraordinary one.

This is an entertaining, funny, irreverent show for the viewer who is fascinated with, or even mildly interested in, watching and learning about the creative process of designing and building impressively intricate outdoor decks and beautiful backyard spaces. Each episode shows, from concept to completion, the story of a backyard makeover with a focus on the construction of the unique deck project.

Gutted

Hot Property 12

Mon 5pm • Wed 9pm • Thurs 9am • Fri 1pm

Mon 8am • Tues 12pm • Wed 4pm • Fri 8pm

Gutted begins by giving one unsuspecting hoarder the fright of their lives. Nominated by their family (who are in on the game), they return home and walk in to discover that everything they own has gone. All that remains are the white walls of their house and our presenter, patiently waiting to explain what’s going on. It's a life changing experience. Ever been Gutted?

Hot Property follows the fortunes of buyers, sellers and renovators negotiating the challenges of the real estate game. From first home buyers to empty nesters, young singles looking to rent, or DIY renovators, each week join households around the country experiencing the joys and disappointments of creating their own domestic dreams.

Mon 3pm • Wed 7pm • Thurs 10.30pm • Fri 11am • Sat 11am & 8pm


Holmes Makes It Right Tues 8pm • Wed 8am • Thurs 12pm • Fri 4pm • Sat 3pm • Sun 8pm

Mike Holmes is back, doing what he does best. Picking up where he left off with his hit series, Holmes On Homes and cranking it up several notches. Mike will be taking on disasters that other contractors would run away from. The kinds of circumstances where you don't just need a contractor, you need a miracle. He is getting back to the kind of work he did before there ever was a TV show – helping people, make it right.

show me how

Chuck's Day Off Tues 6pm • Wed 11pm • Thurs 10am • Fri 2pm • Sat 8am & 12.30am • 12pm

What does the owner and head chef of the city’s hottest restaurant do on his only day off every week? If you’re Chuck Hughes, you cook. This cooking series oozes with energy and is packed with information. It provides viewers with achievable recipes as well as an edgy look into the rock ’n roll reality of the city’s hottest chef and the inner-workings of his restaurant.

Show Me How Mon 7.30pm • Tues 10pm • Wed 11.30am • Thurs 3.30pm • Sat 9am & 6pm • Sun 2pm & 9pm

Sarah beeny selling houses & Double Your House for Half the Money get the look

Your favourite local arts and craft show is back in December. Show Me How has heaps of wonderful projects that are sure to inspire you. Presenter Gloria Bastos will be at it again with her line up of fabulous guests who will be guiding you through a series of great arts and crafts. Whether it’s scrap-booking, oil paint, sugar art or getting creative with clay and mosaics, we’ll give you the know-how

Sarah Beeny Selling Houses Mon 9pm • Tues 9am • Wed 1pm • Thurs 5pm • Sat 12pm & 5pm • Sun 7am & 1pm

This brand new series sees Sarah help not-so-savvy sellers maximise the saleability of their homes by giving them a unique opportunity to snoop on the competition.

Get the Look Mon 12.30pm • Tues 4.30pm • Thurs 8.30pm • Fri 8.30am • Sat 9.30am & 6.30pm • Sun 2.30pm & 9.30pm

Get The Look sees interior designer Kathryn Rayward lay down her years of experience to help families come up with something creative, practical and, above all, functional.


The new indulgent I&J Gourmet Chunky Fillet Fingers and Chunky Fish Cakes are available in hake and haddock. S G 114


S ustainability

ECO-LABELLING Amid growing concern for the world’s seafood resources, an increasing number of shoppers and seafood consumers are taking an active interest in the sustainability of the fish they buy. Commercial bodies are helping to drive this shift, often making public commitments to more responsible sourcing. Inevitably, such commitments put pressure on the seafood supply chain and ultimately the fisheries to exercise responsible management. Such market-driven approaches have the potential to fundamentally change the way the world’s oceans are fished – provided strategies are based on a credible measure of sustainability and shoppers can be assured that they’re buying from responsible fishers. We take a look.

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T

raceability through the seafood supply chain

to allow them to apply the coveted MSC eco-label to

is crucial. In SA and abroad recent media

their packaging. They haven’t stopped there though:

reports have highlighted numerous incidences

SalmonBar, part of Three Streams Holdings, last

of seafood mislabelling. For sustainable fishing this

year became the second restaurant in Africa to offer

raises a number of concerns: threatened and/or

MSC-certified seafood as a mark of sustainability

illegal species are given a market by being sold as

on their menu and is currently the only restaurant

something else; the real status of dwindling species

in the country to offer a variety of MSC-certified

may be hidden by substituting with something more

species. Tucked away in the picturesque town of

easily found; illegal, unregulated and unreported

Franschhoek, in the Cape Winelands, SalmonBar’s

(IUU) fishing continues to find receptive markets,

menu has included a number of creative and tasty

where their lower operating costs often allow them

dishes using mackerel, sardines, salmon, hake and

to outcompete responsible fishers. The Marine Stewardship Council (MSC) is a global NPO that works across the entire seafood supply

of certified restaurants around the world and, for

chain to create markets for certified sustainable

SA’s eco-conscious diner, offer another good reason

seafood, by means of a certification and eco-labelling

to visit Franschoek.

program. The MSC maintains an Environmental

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herring from MSC-certified fisheries. By displaying the MSC’s eco-label on their menu they join a handful

SG

Standard for Sustainable Fishing and a second,

ABOUT THE MSC

Chain of Custody Standard that ensures traceability

The Marine Stewardship Council (MSC) is set up to help

of products from certified fisheries.  For seafood to

transform the seafood market to a sustainable basis.

carry the MSC eco-label, all companies in the supply

The MSC runs the only certification and eco-labelling

chain must undergo a Chain of Custody audit to

program for wild-capture fisheries consistent with

ensure full traceability back to where it was caught.

the ISEAL Code of Good Practice for Setting Social

The program has enjoyed tremendous growth

and Environmental Standards and the UN Food and

in recent years, with 10% of the world’s fisheries

Agricultural Organisation Guidelines for the Eco-labelling

currently engaged with the MSC and more than

of Fish and Fishery Products from Marine Capture

20 000 MSC-labelled products in restaurants and retail

Fisheries. These guidelines are based upon the FAO

outlets around the world. In SA, MSC is recognised by

Code of Conduct for Responsible Fishing and require that

WWF’s Southern Africa Sustainable Seafood Initiative

credible fishery certification and eco-labelling schemes

(WWF-SASSI) as the world’s leading eco-label for

include: objective, third-party fishery assessment utilising

wild-caught seafood and MSC-labelled products have

scientific evidence; transparent processes with built-in

been available in supermarkets for a number of

stakeholder consultation and objection procedures; and

years. Among retailers, Woolworths currently offers

standards based on the sustainability of target species,

the widest variety of products available and Three

ecosystems and management practices.

Streams, like some of their other seafood suppliers,

For more info on the work of the MSC, please visit

has had to undergo MSC Chain of Custody certification

www.msc.org and www.msc.org/socialmedia.


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A wards

Green Wine

The Nedbank Green Wine Awards were held recently. We take a look at the winning wines and the Best Farming Practices overall winner – Delheim, and the runner-up – La Motte.

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Eco-friendly, sustainably aware, socially conscious and fine wines are the order of the day. Sustainable wine-making is more than a buzzword; it's an enviro-philosophy that aims to transform a successful wine industry into one where man and nature thrive. Local wine farms have listened and it's this commitment to greener wine production and sustainable farming practices that was celebrated at the Nedbank Green Wine Awards 2013. We take a look.

S

nce 2009 the Nedbank Green Wine Awards have

saluted

those

producers

Winning Wines

making

headway in sustainable farming and enviro-

preservation, while simultaneously elevating quality

Best wines made from Organically Grown Grapes: Best Wine Overall – Laibach Woolworths Merlot 2012 Best Red – Laibach Woolworths Merlot 2012 Best White – Waverley Hills Viognier Semillon Chardonnay 2011 Bloggers' Choice – Waverley Hills Shiraz Mourvèdre Viognier 2010 Best Value – Org de Rac Unwooded Chardonnay 2013.

to produce better and greener wines.

• •

Greg Garden, group brand executive at Nedbank, says: 'As SA's green and caring bank, our involvement in the awards is an important component in our overall integrated sustainability commitment. A commitment that, in the past two decades, has

Best Biodiversity and Wine Initiative Wines: Best Wine Overall – Paul Cluver Gewürztraminer 2012 Best Red – Uitkyk Estate Carlonet 2009 Best White – Paul Cluver Gewürztraminer 2012 Bloggers' Choice – Paul Cluver Chardonnay 2011 Best Value – Backsberg Tread Lightly Chenin Blanc 2012

seen Nedbank making a significant contribution to

the preservation and protection of our environment through initiatives like The Nedbank Green Affinity Programme which, since the establishment of the WWF Nedbank Green Trust in 1990, has provided

• •

Best Farming Practices Winners: Overall Winner – Delheim Runner-up – La Motte Best Contribution to Conservation – Delheim Best Contribution to Farming Practices and Production Integrity – Bartinney Best (Sustainable) Contribution to Tourism – La Motte Best Contribution to Community Development – Delheim

financial support of approximately R150m to nearly 200 conservation projects across the country.' It is through the Green Trust that conservation

projects such as the Biodiversity & Wine Initiative (BWI) continue to make a mark towards transforming

the sector.

• •

www.greenwineawards.com.

To sample the winning wines in Cape Town,

https://twitter.com/reenWineAwards

Johannesburg and Durban in November, visit the

#NedbankGreenWine

event – www.greenwineawards.com/tasting-events

1

2

1 (from left): Daniël Scheitakat (IPW), Victor Sperling (Delheim), Nora Sperling (Delheim), Duimpie Bayly & Ian Dinan (Getaway) 2 (from left): Dr Paul Cluver (Paul Cluver wines), Ian Dinan (Getaway), Francois Van Zyl (Laibach) & Greg Garden (Nedbank)

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S SG G 120 120


The iconic wine estate of Delheim soars as overall Best Farming Practices winner.

D

elheim Wine Estate, a Stellenbosch stalwart

public-benefit organisation that serves 28 members

nestled on the slopes of the Simonsberg,

on the Simonsberg. Also making a favourable

excelled at the 2013 Nedbank Green Wine

impression on the judges was this pioneering estate's

Awards as overall winner of the Best Farming Practices

management of a cleaner production strategy in the

category which favours a holistic, conservation-minded

cellar to improve the quality of waste water through

approach to farming and identifies excellence in

participation in a study by a Stellenbosch University

community and tourism development.

Master's student. Delheim's biological pest control

In addition, this prominent Winelands pride of

is another notable factor, such as the non-toxic 'hot

the Sperling family also scooped two of the four

sauce' sprayed onto vines to deter herbivores from

sub-categories in the Best Farming Practices division:

grazing.

Best Contribution to Community Development and Best Contribution to Conservation.

Passionately committed to the principles and practices of enviro-sustainable wine production,

The judges were in agreement that Delheim stood

Delheim was one of the first wine farms to become a

out for its community spirit and scale of conservation

Biodiversity and Wine Initiative (BWI) member, and has

action taken. 'Delheim's team spotted a koppie

since achieved BWI Championship status. The estate

(Klapmutskop) that was not in use and saw that it was

recently stood out as the only wine farm among the

infested with alien vegetation. They went out, cleared

top five nominees in the biodiversity category for the

the alien plants and conserved the koppie. They

2013 Eco-Logic Awards.

looked beyond their borders to find enviro-problems

Eager to share its slice of Winelands paradise with

and then stepped up and made an effort. In doing so

fellow eco-enthusiasts, Delheim now offers delicious

they galvanised the community into action,' shared

Green Picnics under towering oaks at the river's edge.

Cameron Ewart-Smith, editor of a popular travel magazine and judge at the event. Delheim was the founding member of the

Delheim's picnics are on offer seven days a week and pre-bookings are essential. To order your

Greater Simonsberg Conservancy (previously the

delicious basket contact Delheim Restaurant at Tel

Klapmuts Conservancy), a functioning non-profit and

021 888 4607 or email restaurant@delheim.com

ď ź

The judges were in agreement that Delheim stood out for its community spirit and scale of conservation action taken.

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The enchanting estate of La Motte in the beautiful Franschhoek Valley was the runner up for Best Farming Practices.

V

iticulture on La Motte was established in 1752

its Nabot farm in the Walker Bay coastal area, are

with the planting of 4 000 vines by Huguenot

committed to organic farming principles by which

descendant Gabriël du Toit.

the use of fertilisers, synthetic pesticides, plant

La Motte was acquired in 1970 by the late Dr Anton

growth regulators and animal feed additives are

Rupert, an internationally respected industrialist

eliminated or largely avoided.

who established a global business empire, and was

La Motte is accredited with the BWI Champion

held in high regard as a committed conservationist.

status for its commitment to conservation, EU

A major development, restoration and conservation

and NOP Organic Certification in respect of its

program followed, which reinvented La Motte into a

organic farming practices, HACCP Certification

leading global wine producer and sought-after tourist

regarding Food Safety & Quality Assurance Services,

destination. Vineyards have been progressively

IPW membership for complying with prescribed

replanted with noble varieties, the latest viticultural

production practices, the Woolworths Eco-Efficiency

practices have been introduced and a modern cellar

Award in recognition of its commitment towards

has been built.

enviro-sustainability, as well as certification in

The estate has also shown a distinct responsibility towards uplifting and empowering its people. These

respect of the Woolworths Farming for the Future initiative.

values have been passed on to present-day owners.

In 2002 La Motte started an organic production

Initiatives for development and self-sufficiency have

unit on its Nabot farm near the village of Bot River

been established and La Motte has become a

in the Walker Bay coastal area.

member of the Ethical Trading Initiative (ETI). With the development of a modern village,

La Motte has been farming organically since 2007 and the estate, as well as its Nabot farm, have

Dennegeur, for its worker community, La Motte

been awarded full SGS Certification – an International

has reiterated its commitment to improving the

organic production standard that acknowledges

quality of life of employees. Facilities such as a

good agricultural practice in organic production.

health clinic managed by a resident nursing sister, a

All La Motte and Nabot grapes processed in

crèche for employees' children and training facilities

the estate's cellar originate from organically grown

adhering to the principles of Specialised Education

vineyards.

and Training in Agriculture (SETA) are available to all workers.

Tel 021 876 8000 and email info@la-motte.co.za

In recognition of its human ethics and the working conditions of employees, La Motte was awarded accreditation by the Wine Industry Ethical Trade Association (WIETA). Examples of the estates's enviro-care include the protection of fynbos on the adjoining Wemmershoek mountains and adherence to organic principles in the production of grapes, flowers and ethereal oils. La Motte was one of the first wine estates to be awarded the coveted ISO 14001 Environmental Management Certification. The estate also complies with ISO 9000:2000 Certification, is a member of the Green Mountain Eco Route in the Groenlandberg

In recognition of its human ethics and the working conditions of employees, La Motte was awarded accreditation by the Wine Industry Ethical Trade Association (WIETA).

area, and has received Champion status of the Biodiversity & Wine Initiative. La Motte, as well as

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Winning 1

2

3

4

Best Wines Made From Organically Grown Grapes

•1. Best Red – Laibach Woolworths Merlot 2012 •

1. Best Wine Overall – Laibach Woolworths Merlot 2012

2. Best White – Waverley Hills Viognier Semillon Chardonnay 2011 3. Bloggers' Choice – Waverley Hills Shiraz Mourvèdre Viognier 2010 4. Best Value – Org de Rac Unwooded Chardonnay 2013

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Wines 1

2

3

4

Best Biodiversity & Wine Initiative Wines

•2. Best Red – Uitkyk Estate Carlonet 2009•1. •3. Bloggers' Choice – Paul Cluver Chardonnay 2011•4. Best Value

1. Best Wine Overall – Paul Cluver Gewürztraminer 2012 Best White – Paul Cluver Gewürztraminer 2012 – Backsberg Tread Lightly Chenin Blanc 2012

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BOTTELARY HILLS WINE CENTRE

DOMAINE COUTELIER

BOTTELARY HILLS

BOTTELARY HILLS RENOSTERVELD CONSERVANCY

VAN RYN’S

BEAU BELLE STELLENBOSCH VINEYARDS WELMOED

LE RICHE

CAVALLI

96 WINERY RD

HELDERBERG WINERY

FLAGSTONE

Explore the Cape winelands this summer where you'll be sure to find SA wine estates internationally recognised for their exceptional quality produce. Picturesque settings, traditional cuisine and historic charm await those who appreciate the finer things in life.

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GREATER SIMONSBERG CONSERVANCY

Photos La Motte Wine Estate

DELVERA

CLICK HERE to download the map

take the tour


Tech

APPWORLD We take a look at the latest eco-apps for your digi-device.

Skinvision SkinVision is a mobile app that allows you to understand your skin health and keep track of it. The mobile applications allow you to understand UV index along with your skin type. In addition you

can easily and simply check skin lesions (moles) by sending a photo and receiving an instant analysis and also find an appropriate dermatologist in your vicinity. SkinVision intends to educate,

website and click on the 'compatibility checker' to see if it'll work in your home. With their free app you will be able to control your home's temperature from your iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch. So, if, for example, you go on a last-minute trip you'll be able to change your home's temperature from wherever you are. If you are coming home early to a cold house you can turn up the heat on your way. The app pretty much allows you to adjust your installed

raise awareness, provide automated assessments

thermostat from anywhere.

for moles, improve the relationship between

Ecoble

dermatologists and their patients and, ultimately, to reduce costs for skin care. This enables continuous supervision, independent of geographical location. This app is an important and necessary step

Another Apple app that sends updates and information on sustainability, green technology, news and innovation in the form of a blog to a

towards the future of skincare.

user’s iPhone. The owner, Brett Stark, hopes that

NEST

and its design. Green news isn’t all enviro-hellfire

The Nest Learning Thermostat makes saving energy simple with control over Wi-Fi from your iPhone, iPad, iPod touch, or Mac. According to Nest’s online compatibility checker, Nest works in 95% of homes with low voltage heating and cooling systems. That includes gas, electric, oil, forced air, heat pump, and radiant. Visit the Installation section at their

his app emphasises both the value of green living and brimstone, so explore the good, bad, ugly and amazing from the natural sciences and ecological innovations via this free app. It has some great information on green and organic lifestyles, world green news, sustainability and green technology. If you don’t have an smartphone you can still check out all the same information on their website.

SG

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Hot off the press

Coca Cola just launched a new bottle that's, literally, cool as ice. The soda megabrand is offering the soft drink to its Colombian market served in a chilled bottle made of ice. Once your ice-cold beverage is consumed, the packaging melts away, leaving nothing to throw away or recycle. The ice bottle joins 7Up, which introduced an ice vending machine in Argentina a few months ago that melted once all of its beverages were dispensed. Both the ice bottles and Melting Machine are not just a great marketing scheme, but also an almost entirely enviro-friendly gimmick for sustainable design lovers. Coke-shaped ice bottles were filled with the bubbly beverage, then passed out with a slap-bracelet Coke label around the bottom to keep fingers from freezing. Once all the cola is consumed, users can use the remaining ice to cool down on the beach, or even take a chomp out of the edible bottle to keep cool. Once melted, only the bracelet label remains, which can be easily thrown into the recycle bin or worn. Now, if only they were filled with something a bit healthier than Coke.

BRAW BARS

Zoku Slush & Shake Maker

This high-performance, design-driven slushy maker can make healthy slushies, milkshakes, frozen alcoholic drinks and fruit smoothies in as little as seven minutes. The Slush & Shake Maker is designed to store easily in your freezer so it is always ready to use. To use, remove the frozen inner core from the freezer and place it into the outer sleeve, pour in your ingredients, mix and scrape the cup with the included spoon, and watch as the slush freezes before your eyes. The Slush & Shake Maker is available in five juicy colours. www.zokuhome.com

As food intolerances become more prevalent, a n d customers become increasingly health conscious, healthfood retailer Wellness Warehouse is leading the way in fuss-free solutions for those on alternative health diets. The latest addition to their Healthy Foodmarket is a preservative-free, gluten-free, dairy-free, raw dynamite snack bar that’s already a hit overseas. These tasty bars are pressed raw (not baked) with 100% gluten-free oats and real fruit with no added sugar and are available in four flavours: blackcurrant, cocoa & orange, apple & pear and strawberry. Braw bars retail for R13.99 and are now available in all Wellness Warehouse stores and online at www.wellnesswarehouse.com.

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Jamie Oliver Campaign makes McDonald’s change recipe Chef Jamie Oliver won a battle against one of the largest fast food chains in the world. After Oliver showed how McDonalds hamburgers are made, the franchise announced it will change its recipe. Check out the video for more.

Jamie Oliver's Food Revolution

The Art of Slush: Creative & Delicious recipes for slushies, milkshakes, smoothies & more Presented by ZOKU

This book features an assortment of slushies, milkshakes and smoothies that are designed to work with the Zoku Slush and Shake Maker. This book contains both healthy and decadent options. Just imagine a homemade Kiwi Pineapple Slush, or a Spicy Bloody Mary Slush, or even a Lavender Hot Chocolate Slush. If you like milkshakes then imagine a Strawberry or even Eggnog Rum Milkshake or maybe even a Chai Soy Latte. If smoothies are your thing, then consider a Key Lime Avocado smoothie. These are but a few of the enticing concoctions available including a cool refresher detox slush.

Conscious Food: Sustainable Growing, Spiritual Eating Jim PathFinder Ewing Findhorn Press • 978 1 84409 596 4

This trick of putting a paper towel in with your salad lettuce will keep it fresh all week long. The paper towel will absorb the moisture, which is the culprit for wilting lettuce

This book is part of a series including Reiki Shamanism, Clearing and Finding Sanctuary in Nature, which all remind us of the necessary mindfulness needed in all that we do and eat. This book in particular is all about the conscious growing and eating of food; that of returning spirit to our food. Chapter 1 looks at 'Edible Prayers: A Brief Selective History of Food and Spirit', chapter 2 tackles 'Post-modern Organics: A New Science for Earth' and, finally, chapter 3 looks at 'Bio-Cultural Choice: An Edible Revolution'. Some have said that Jim manages to remind us that even our daily bread is a sacrament. And in its growing, cooking and its eating, food deserves our honour and respect.

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Hot off the press

Earthbound raises a glass to quaffing with a conscience Range of five Fairtrade and organically-certified varietals launched. While eating and living with a conscience is becoming more and more mainstream, what about conscious quaffing? With this in mind, a new local wine, Earthbound, has been launched. With a range of five varietals, four of which are certified organically-grown, the new wines have more depth to them than just complexity of character; they are grown using Fairtrade principles too. 'Earthbound wines have a conscience: from how the grapes are cultivated, to considering its carbon footprint from farm to fridge, to reinvesting in the land and its people. It's also a high quality wine that is easy-drinking with wide appeal,' says winemaker Samuel Viljoen, pictured below right. Earthbound has a long-standing legacy that is intricately linked to its place of origin and the people who produce the wine. Previously bottled under the popular label Tukulu, one of SA's foremost empowerment labels, the wine is today made by the same local farming community and continues to ensure strong compliance to its Fairtrade certification. 'Our grapes are sourced from certified producers and we ensure trading conditions are properly sustainable for both the land and the communities that work on it. In fact, for every bottle of Earthbound that is sold, R6.50

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is reinvested into the farm and its people,' says Viljoen. He said the farm employs eco-sustainable principles too. For example, owl boxes accommodate these birds of prey, allowing them to control rodents, while steam weeders are used to destroy invasive plants with heat. And while the wines are low-sulphur, four are also organic. 'This means that the vineyards employ farming methods that produce the strongest and richest grapes possible with the fewest detrimental effects on the environment,' explains Viljoen. The vines were also certified by the global benchmark for quality, Société Générale de Surveillance (SGS), after a three-year conversion process.

The full range can be foraged from Tops @ Spar, Cyber Cellar and Darling Wine Shop for between R45.00 (white) and R54.00 (red) RSP. Click here for more info.


Spaza Spaza

This SA lifestyle brand offers locally-crafted functional gifts and alternatives to everyday disposable consumables. Spaza Dish Covers are a beautiful alternative to plastic and ideal for covering platters, salads, side dishes or leftovers. Available in four self-adjusting sizes and colour coded for easy identification. 100% unbleached cotton and machine washable. www.spazastore.co.za

Fleur du Cap KWENCHI

This raw Kombucha effervescent beverage (made by curing and converting black tea, can sugar and filtered water with live cultures in bespoke oak containers and infused with fresh herbs, fruits or spices) is 100% natural and preservativeand gluten-free. It is a delicious, healing, energising, metabolism-boosting tonic that stimulates digestion, protein-cell-building and assists in toxin release. Health-conscious, active people are becoming increasingly aware of this drink as an healthy alternative to numerous syntheticallymanufactured energy drinks in the market. Available in ginger, chai, buchu and original flavours. www.kwenchi.com • 082 791 4390 orders@kwenchi.com

Fleur du Cap's new Natural Light is a health-friendly wine that is the ideal choice to uplift your spirits, with its lower alcohol level (9.8 %) yet fruitful character. The new 2013 vintage which has just been released is a slightly off-dry, crisp and refreshing blend of 90% chenin blanc and 10% sauvignon blanc with enticing floral and tropical scents and just a hint of green pepper. Fleur du Cap Natural Light will set the tone for a laid back, guilt-free afternoon which means that you can indulge and enjoy life a little more responsibly, without having to compromise on taste. Fleur du Cap Natural Light 2013 is available at leading stores and sells for around R39 a bottle. For more info visit www.fleurducap.co.za

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A wards Project 191: Use Of Nanotechnology In The Optimisation Of Microbial Fuel Cells Cape Town student Danielle Jacobson investigated how bacteria and nano fibre electrodes could be used to increase the electrical output of microbial fuel cells. She maximised the area of the electrode to make it viable for commercial use in the future and this year included yeast particles treated with superparamagnetic nanoparticles to increase the voltage and current outputs of the microbial cell.

Project 220: Portable Heat Starting At Your Feet Grade 10 learners Gaby Hattingh and Jessica Muller from Eunice High School in Bloemfontein, developed a portable, cost-effective and energy-efficient heater designed to be placed under a carpet to heat your feet. They were inspired to invent a heater they could use in their draughty classrooms. Their heater proved more effective, cost-efficient and energy-efficient than blow, oil and panel heaters.

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Project 590: The Mechanics Of A Falling Water Droplet Grade 11 learners Pule Ndiki and Mawethu Ndiki from Welkom, studied the behaviour of the water droplet to determine if there is a relationship between the depth of a crater and the height of the rebound created by a water droplet. They believe there is only a relationship above a certain height and more investigation is required to be conclusive.

Project 105: Bio-Gas Rustenberg student Namita Biju investigated which biomass produced the most methane gas using a biogas unit. She compared the effectiveness of cow dung, horse dung, rotten bananas and apples and found that cow dung was most effective.

The Eskom Expo for Young Scientists aims to develop young scientists who are able to identify a problem, analyse information, find solutions and communicate findings effectively. We take a look at this year's Best Development & Best Overall winners.

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W under

5

kids

Teenage Inventions That Could Save Our Future Turning Plastic Waste into Biofuel 16-year-old Egyptian student Azza Abdel Hamid Faiad has been at work finding a way to make use of plastic waste. The young scientist discovered a catalyst that could turn Egypt’s one million tons of annually discarded plastic into a phenomenal R700m worth of biofuel each year. Faiad's hope is that her development provides an eco-efficient method for production of hydrocarbon fuel. Faiad was awarded the European Fusion Development Agreement award at the 23rd European Union Contest for Young Scientists, and is seeking patents for her discovery.

Quantum Space Propulsion It may sound like something out of a classic sci-fi movie, but 19-year-old Egyptian physicist Aisha Mustafa’s Quantum Space Propulsion System could send spacecraft boldly into the final frontier without using any fuel. Mustafa believes that the quantum effect can be harnessed in space via the dynamic 'Casimir effect' and from that, energy can be created to produce a net force that could push, pull or propel spacecrafts. Sohag University has already aided Mustafa with her patent application, and she has said she intends to keep developing the system before it is tested in outer space

A Solar Breakthrough Using Fibonacci Sequence 13-year-old Aidan Dwyer observed the patterns of tree branches while he was on a hike and considered that such patterns could be used to improve the efficiency of solar trees. By using the Fibonacci sequence, he was able to generate a formula that produced a solar tree design that appeared to yield 20-50% more power than an equivalent flat solar array. While Dwyer’s calculations weren’t absolutely correct, the bio-mimicry experiment earned the 13-year-old a provisional patent.

Turning Banana Peels into Bioplastic 16-year-old Turkish student Elif Bilgin developed her very own technique for turning the unassuming banana peel into bioplastics – a discovery she hopes could reduce dependence on petro-chemicals and make use of some of the 200 tons of banana peel discarded daily in Thailand alone. Her development relies on the properties of the starches and cellulose found in the outer layer of banana peels, which, through a chemical process developed by Bilgin herself, can be transformed into a non-decaying bioplastic.

Charge Your Cellphone in 20 Seconds 18-year-old Californian Eesha Khare captured everyone’s attention with the creation of a device that could charge cellphones in just 20 seconds and do away with smartphone battery-related anxiety once and for all. Khare developed a supercapacitor storage device that can store a lot of energy and fit within a cell phone battery. Not only can the device charge the phone at lightning-fast speed, it can also last for a whopping 100 000 charge cycles.

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Teen wins for 'amazing' project 17-year-old Camps Bay High

student

Danielle

Jacobson was awarded a gold medal and won the top award in one of the largest categories at the annual national Eskom Expo for Young Scientist for her project titled 'The use of nanotechnology in the optimisation of microbial fuel cells', as well as three additional special awards. Danielle was among more than 800 top pupils who were chosen to represent their regions and showcase their projects to a panel of judges which included professional scientists and teachers. During the Cape Town expo, the judges remarked on her work as amazing and outstanding and of an exceptionally high standard for a pupil in Grade 12. Even though she had assistance with the experimental work, the concept and ideas came from her and was really the best for her category. This is not Danielle's only victory this year. In May she was awarded a scholarship from West Virginia University at the Intel

GLO NIGHTLIGHT

International Science and Engineering Fair – one of the largest

A multi-colored interactive night light that comes with removable glow balls. The Glo Nightlight’s balls will glow for 30 minutes, fading out while changing their color, but if you place the balls back in place, they will start glowing again. The base is designed to charge the balls and the balls won’t get warm or break. Especially useful for children that are afraid of the dark in their bedroom, the Glo Nightlight looks a bit like an alien plant, its three stems each hold a glowing ball. The base charges the balls up at night, and you can remove them and place them wherever a little light is needed to scare the monsters away. The dimension of Glo Nightlight is 8.2 x 8.5 x 9.8-inch, made of BPA-free, Phthalate-free, PVC-free, you will also find the included 9v power adapter and the low energy LED base.

Grades 9-12, in Phoenix, Arizona.

international pre-college science competitions for pupils in Source: IOL

Green Cities: A Fun Cartoon for Kids

The City of Vancouver has an ambitious plan to be the greenest city in the world by 2020. After talking with citizens, business leaders, sustainability thinkers, academics and advocates, they created this video to show their 'Greenest City Action Plan'.

For more info click here.

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Y outh

Curly the Chameleon Charles de Villiers & Claire Norden Struik Nature • 978 1 7758 4067 1

I loved reading this beautiful book about a very brave Chameleon, with its sing songy rhythm it takes you right back to your childhood. While enjoying the story you can also look at the beautiful illustrations which will capture the imagination and teach children about the circle of life. My favorite part was coming to the end and seeing the wonderful stickers and blank page for kids to really let their own mind take them on a creative journey. This is a must have for any Christmas stocking.

The Story of Humphrey the Hereford Stephen Marcus Finn Vitruvian Press • 978 0 6205 3566 3

Caw the crow tells the story of Humphrey, a calf born to be killed for food. His cheeky sense of humor takes us on a journey into understanding the plight of animals from their own perspectives. Young and old will enjoy this beautiful story about animals, you will laugh and you will cry but you will never see them the same why again. A must read for any animal lover.

CLIMATE KIDS NASA's Eye on the Earth This site is geared towards kids to learn more about the Earth and how climate change is affecting it. With fun cartoons, games, projects and various sections dedicated to answering any question a young one would have about our planet's current situation, this site is a great way to keep a child entertained as well as informed. Visit http://climatekids.nasa.gov/ for more info.

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Travel

Jewel in the wild

De Hoop Nature Reserve has been rightly described as a jewel in the crown of the Western Cape's globally famous natural attractions. We take a look.

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T

he De Hoop conservation area is characterised by rich biodiversity and rare species of fynbos leading down to an untouched coastline and is situated close to the southern

tip of Africa, a mere three hours drive from Cape town. The 36 000ha of this World heritage Site is the setting for the De Hoop Collection, which is run in conjunction with Cape Nature and is the second largest marine reserve in South Africa, after St Lucia. The entire De Hoop reserve is renowned for its bird-watching with the reserve's 19km-long vlei being a highly productive ecosystem. It is on the Ramsar List of Wetlands of International Importance and many of the 260 bird species which occur at De Hoop can be seen here. Pelicans come to breed on its waters each year, and the entire De Hoop reserve is well-recognised as a bird lovers' paradise. The area is a safe shelter for fish eagles, 12 waterfowl species and migrant waders, including curlew sandpipers, ruffs, little stints, whiskered and white-winged terns. De Hoop also offers some of the best whale-viewing in the world, with some 40% of the global Southern Right whale population coming to the bay each year to breed. Between the months of June to early December, there are sightings of hundreds of whales and their calves, some coming within 50m of the shoreline. Adding to this marine spectacular, are the pods of playful dolphins that frolic in the bay. For couples who want a romantic getaway, the seclusion of De Hoop's setting is ideal for relaxing and rediscovering nature. There are guided excursions and nature walks, hiking and mountain biking trails and interpretive rock pool walks. A swimming pool, tennis court, boules courtyard and mountain bikes are all available to De Hoop guests, as are a specially-tailored kids' program and baby-sitting services. A fully-equipped conference venue is available for business or wedding functions. De Hoop is also the venue for weekend wedding celebrations. Spectacular weddings are held under the majestic fig trees with fairy lights and lanterns over a brown and ivory dance floor. Should you choose this romantic setting for your big day, De Hoop's management says they will organise everything for your wedding, from flowers and dÊcor to fun cocktails and unusual canapes with delicious wedding menus.

Accommodation The De Hoop Collection offers a wide range of accommodation spread across the property. This clever use of available space and incorporation of historic buildings creates a village-type atmosphere, where guests can enjoy privacy and/or socialising to the level of their choice. Most accommodation is self-catering, however The Fig Tree Restaurant is open for breakfast, lunch and supper. There are also some new accommodation options at De Hoop.

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One can, for example, enjoy a fully-catered getaway

freely make use of natural stone, limewash and

when you book at one of the De Hoop Collection's

thatch.

two newly-renovated Opstal Stable Suites. Each offers

During the most recent 50 years in the history of

a beautifully-appointed bedroom with a king-size

the reserve, Cape Nature Conservation has played

bed and a spacious en-suite bathroom. Perfect for

a key role. The emphasis has shifted from a purely

the discerning guest, both private suites (the Stable

agricultural and hunting approach to land-use, to one

Suite and the Vlei Suite) are connected to the larger

of conservation and education. Conservation includes

Opstal area.

not only nature, but also the cultural-historical

You can take rackets to enjoy a game on the newly-surfaced tennis court, before a refreshing dip in the nearby swimming pool, or make use of the bar

that which they have left behind. Further research and funding are required to

fridge and tea-and-coffee-making facilities, and enjoy

implement

excellent meals and true country hospitality at the

Long neglected, the archeological elements are now

adjoining Fig Tree Restaurant.

enjoying increased attention. De Hoop contains some

Flora & fauna

this

cultural-historical

conservation.

of the best preserved examples of coastal Early Stone Age through to Later Stone Age archeology in the

De Hoop represents a treasure-chest of natural and

Western Cape and represents an extremely valuable

cultural assets. The diversity of 1 500 plant species is

asset for the future marketing of the reserve.

among the highest in the Cape Floristic Region, with

The historical buildings, their architectural style,

a large percentage of rare, threatened and endemic

possible architects and builders also deserve further

species. The discerning visitor is privileged to walk

attention, while the restoration of the buildings to

among pristine fynbos vegetation and view the

their original condition, with new adaptations to

flowering plants at close quarters. The invertebrate

suit our times, is of cardinal importance for those

animal wealth is equally diverse. A safe refuge is

involved in this program. Tracking down people who

provided for rare mammals such as the bontebok

can possibly shed further light on the history of the

and Cape Mountain zebra, smaller predators and

reserve is a further priority, says Cape Nature.

various bat species, the latter in a large breeding

Both the Khoisan legacy and the De Hoop, Potberg

cave. These limestone cave systems are unique and

and Melkkamer homesteads and their long history as

preserved in a pristine condition.

farms indicate a special type of partnership between

History & archeology

nature and culture that warrant greater attention in a future of increasing demands on natural areas. It is

Modern humans (going back about 200 000 years)

this partnership and the accompanying responsibility

and our hominid ancestors have been an integral

that should be brought home to each visitor to De

part of the De Hoop system for more than a

Hoop Nature Reserve.

million years. They have left their mark on this vast

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elements – the tale of the people of the reserve, and

and ageless landscape in forms that continually

Sites to visit

remind us of human dependence upon these natural

Given the long human and pre-modern human

resources. Along the coast are the ubiquitous

occupation of what is now De Hoop Nature Reserve,

middens containing the remains of shellfish, with

there are numerous archeological sites which a visitor

here and there a tiny, efficient tool fashioned of

might find of interest. With evidence of occupation on

stone; deftly packed stone walls span the limestone

the reserve from the Early Stone Age right through

hills; and compact cottages and spacious dwellings

to the Later Stone Age and beyond, when indigenous


people continued using the area after the arrival of

capture memories to last a lifetime and pass onto

European colonists, the area offers a broad picture

generations to come what this 'Jewel in the Wild'

of human development over our known history –

has to offer. With its Cape Nature caretakers, we can

and dating back to long before any migrations from

only hope that De Hoop lives up to its Dutch-origin

Africa. During the Later Stone Age the San hunted,

name and continues providing humankind with an

collected veld plants and caught and collected marine

abundance of natural delights and experiences – to

animals in this area. The Khoekhoen or Khoikhoi were

keep us in contact with the eternally renewing and

the first people to have domesticated animals about

refreshing energies of a part of the planet that still

2 000 years ago – first sheep and later cattle. De Hoop

holds both the mystique of an ancient landscape –

contains some of the best preserved examples of

and the faint, but discernable, traces of the eons over

coastal later- and mid-Stone Age archaeology in the

which it was both a place to live and a place which

Western Cape and represents an extremely valuable

provided life to so many generations before us. 

archeological repository. Many midden (shell heap) sites and cave sites along the coast and inland bear

For more info see ad below.

testimony to these early occupations. The following possible archaeological sites are known on De Hoop: Black Eagle Cave, Potberg: Hand-painting of historical interest Vulture Kloof Cave: Khoikhoi remains, later used as a kraal by farmers Melkbosheuwel Ruins: Khoikhoi midden site Caves at Grootfontein, Eselkloof & William's Kloof Pretorius's Cave & Badenhorst's Cave The Dig, Dronkvlei Klipkoppie midden Koppie Alleen middens Voëlklip middens Hammer-and-Ladder Cave, Hamerkop Stilgat: West Cave, Box Cave & Aeolianite Cave Noetsie Sea Caves Bloukrans San Cave in kloof, John Richard's Bay Aeolianite San Cave, John Richard's Bay The De Hoop Nature Reserve has a diversity of values for people, from practical to aesthetic, from watershed protection to spiritual inspiration. It is a magnificent outdoor classroom, offering diverse and fascinating walking opportunities for visitors. Those who choose this 'tip of Africa' experience for their getaway may want to explore on their own, photograph some ancient Stone Age treasures, to

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Travel

what does it take to be

the ultimate How much luxury and comfort do you need on safari, and how do you provide that while inflicting the least possible damage on the natural environment? As part of 'responsible tourism month', we feature this extract from the book Africa's Finest where authors David Bristow and Colin Bell focus on the core ingredients that go into making the ultimate green lodge located in a prime wildlife area.

W

hile the ultimate green lodge does not

on the topic in much greater detail. We can only

actually exist, we hope that in time all

present the sum total of our collective knowledge

safari lodges will strive to implement

of what we believe every lodge should be and do,

these and other sustainable practices. It’s a big topic and could even be the subject of a book others with more expertise than ourselves in the

SUSTAINABLE DESIGN & CONSTRUCTION

field of rapidly-evolving and improving 'alternative'

The first step in getting it right: a new facility needs

technologies, to explore, improve and expand

to be designed and built to blend into the natural

of its own. Perhaps this will be the prompt for

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or strive to.


Singata Pamushana Lodge

ate green lodge setting, minimising any site damage, and installing the latest technologies to ensure minimal impacts.

comfort and safety. The facility should be able to be completely

Design, scale, dĂŠcor and style of the lodge

removed at the end of its life or lease in order

should be appropriate to the area, the

to allow the bush to revert to its natural state.

immediate surroundings and the culture of the

There should be minimum use of cement except

local people.

as floors in workshops and fuel depots to

There should be creative use of materials and

prevent spillages from polluting the soil.

recycling – in other words, make use of what is

Canvas or sustainable, local materials should be

on site or available in the area.

used wherever possible. A lodge should be built

The facility should preserve the natural integrity

with ample insulation to keep the rooms cool in

of the place and introduce nature to the guest’s

summer and warm in winter. Nowadays canvas

experience (decks, wide-open view sky beds)

is available with double insulation layers for

and not introduce inappropriate trappings of the

walls and roofs.

city to the bush.

No hardwood should be used unless it is old and

Lodges should be designed to withstand the

recycled (such as railway sleepers and old boats). If

climatic conditions of the region and meet

the lodge requires hardwood for decks, for example,

the expectations of guests when it comes to

look for material that creates a hard product from

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Mombo Camp softer commercially-grown timber or, alternatively,

well as being kept cool with effective insulation.

look at artificial woods.

There

should

liquid

dispensers

For screens, walls and roofs, use sustainable and

washbasins at

all

and

entrances.

handwash Correctly

easily renewable materials such as canvas, grass,

sized grease traps must be installed at all

reeds and palm makuti.

kitchen drains. They must be cleaned regularly.

LODGE OPERATIONS No animal products (such as porcupine quills and

Use organic menu ingredients, preferably sourced from

neighbouring

communities,

and

use

enviro-sensitive cleaning materials.

zebra skins) should be used for decoration unless

Menus should reflect local flavours, ingredients

you have proof they have been collected sustainably

and culture, and meals should ideally be cooked

over time and on site.

on bio-gas produced from the lodge’s own bio-gas

No charcoal or local hardwoods to be used for heating water or cooking; only a small amount of wood should be used for the evening’s social fire.

facility.

HOT WATER & SUPPLY

Wherever possible, fresh organic vegetables

Electric geysers and wood-burning 'donkey' boilers

should be grown by local communities and purchased

are not sustainable and should be replaced by

from them. In addition, consider hydroponics.

solar hot-water heating systems which are highly

Produce must be from sustainable sources. These

effective, especially those using evacuated tubes. If

include certified timber, certified fish and certified

a lodge is upmarket and boasts baths (and you are

palm oil, for example. All unsustainable practices

in an area with lots of water), two solar geysers can

and endangered products must be eliminated from

be plumbed in series to ensure a constant supply of

the supply-and-value chain.

hot water for even the mega-user guest.

Create a nursery, or subscribe to a tree-planting

Use low-flow showerheads.

program (such as Trees for Africa) to offset the

In areas where there is a lot of shade, a

carbon cost of operations and travel.

thermodynamic hot-water heating system can be

KITCHEN

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be

installed. It produces hot water in the shade and even on cold and overcast days.

The kitchen must be designed so that it can be

Water usage meters should be located at

easily and hygienically cleaned at all times as

strategic points to measure the amount of water


SEWAGE & GREY-WATER This is possibly the safari tourism’s single biggest oversight, as many lodges pollute their ground waters. Rivers in Kenya’s Maasai Mara Reserve are poisoned by human (lodge) waste due to a lack of effective sewage systems. Correctly engineered above-the-ground sewage or grey-water systems are essential to just about every green lodge. These plants ensure that all waste water and sewage is processed efficiently, resulting in pure, clean water flowing back into the environment. Some lodges have opted for waterless, composting toilets, while others use earthworms to break down waste

WASTE MANAGEMENT Start with a careful purchasing policy – and then Garonga Camp

reduce, re-use and recycle all waste. Have a clearly defined waste management policy that all staff sign-off on and that is rigidly adhered to.

being used and to help with the early detection

All waste is to be sorted and then safely stored

of leaks.

before being trucked out of the area for safe

Drinking water should be created by filtering

disposal. There should be a fenced area with clearly

local water to remove all sediment and then UV

marked, lockable, animal proof (especially baboon,

radiated to eliminate any remaining bacteria.

rat and hyena) cages or bins for storage prior to

These water purifying machines are neither

removal. No waste is to be dumped at the back

bulky nor expensive.

of any lodge; a clean back-of-house is a critical

ELECTRICITY

component of a well-run lodge. Grease traps and macerators are essential to

The price of solar systems has plummeted while

ensure kitchen waste does not clog up the

the cost of diesel has escalated. There is therefore

grey-water system.

no reason to delay converting from fossil fuels to

All leftover food can be recycled and processed

solar for all a lodge’s electricity needs. Electricity

by the lodge’s bio-gas system, which produces

created by the sun is stored in a bank of batteries

methane gas for stoves, or used for compost.

to provide 220v power at night and on cloudy days.

Efficient incinerators are needed to efficiently

Financing is available from many banks so there

dispose of any other combustible waste; they

is no financial reason why every lodge in Africa

can double as boilers to heat water.

should not be converting to solar. Efficiencies have improved to the point where solar can now even

WILDLIFE & CONSERVATION

run air-conditioners. Wind turbine efficiencies have

Safari operations should strive to expand existing

improved somewhat over the past years. In areas

protected areas by creating buffer zones around

with regular winds, wind turbines can supplement

game reserves, working with communities to form

electricity requirements.

viable wildlife conservancies.

The lodge’s existing generators should be used

Lodges should support bona fide researchers.

only as a backup in emergencies.

They should, where possible, conduct a regular

Bio-diesel should be used to fuel emergency

wildlife census and share this information

generators.

in order to build a clearer picture of what is happening to wildlife numbers. They should strive or help to reintroduce and

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protect endangered species. The operation should investigate local and regional conservation priorities and how it can become involved; who is already working in the area and how partnerships can be formed. Promote guest buy-in by encouraging donor funding, volunteer work or other forms of assistance. Employ the best guides so that guests learn from their safari while having fun. Have a corps of trainee guides who work under a mentor and are put through regular training and learning programs.

COMMUNITY & GOVERNMENTS Community development projects should include education, health, nutrition (including supply of fresh water), family planning and women’s empowerment. Effective in-house training and up-skilling ensure local employees are able to advance themselves. Buy

from

community

businesses

and

Pafuri

micro-initiatives, such as organic vegetable farms and local transport entrepreneurs, for example. Shun the inexcusable practice whereby dodgy

Communities

need

to

be

formally

and

safari operators lease land from a community or

meaningfully brought into the tourism industry or

park authority for a bed-night fee with no minimum

wildlife areas will struggle to survive the current

annual lease or rental payment.

human population explosion.

Without a guaranteed minimum rental the

Wherever possible, time and effort needs to

operator takes no financial risk and in times of poor

go into creating initiatives to form community

occupancies communities earn insufficient revenue.

conservancies around formally protected areas or

They are then forced to look at other means to feed

expanding the areas under formal conservation

their families, which often results in livestock or

protection to act as buffer zones.

crops being introduced to the area at the expense of wildlife.

Lodges located within formally protected areas need to have substantial community outreach

Leases should include a fixed monthly or annual

initiatives beyond merely paying park fees or leases

rental in addition to a sliding bed-night or turnover

and perhaps helping with a classroom here and

charge so that both risk and profits are shared.

CONSERVANCIES

some good PR window dressing there. Many lodge owners would be surprised to find that their guests would be happy to pay more for their

Possibly the most important recent conservation

accommodation if they knew it was going to a good

successes coming out of Africa are community

cause like supporting a conservancy, a clinic or a

conservancies, which protect the wildlife of the

school.

region while simultaneously uplifting impoverished

Many parks in Africa protect only the dry-season

local communities. Successful conservancies and

ranges of wildlife: conservancies are needed as

contractual parks, such as Namibia’s CBNRM, South

buffers between a park and its neighbouring

Africa’s Makuleke extension to Kruger, as well as

community, as well as to help protect the wet-season

Kenya’s Olare Orok Conservancy and the Northern

migration ranges of the local wildlife.

Rangelands Trust, are all excellent models to

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emulate.

If a lodge leases land or is otherwise involved


Africa's Finest David Bristow & Colin Bell Green Safari • 978 0 6205 5427 5

financially with a community, its payments should be made to a trust that represents the broader community. Cheques should be handed over at special community events so that everyone knows how much money is being paid and to whom to ensure the money is wisely spent.

HOW GUESTS & VISITORS CAN HELP If you would like to sponsor a rural project that has a focus on education and nutrition, e’Pap is the most nutritious and best-absorbed food supplement around and, best of all, it is relatively inexpensive. Visit www.epap.co.za for more. Donate to an effective wildlife or community NGO working in the area. Africa's Finest has a list of some of the better ones. Payments from guests should be paid ultimately into bank accounts within the country in which the lodge is located. To do otherwise is akin to money laundering.

SG

For more info visit www.africasfinest.co.za.

Just about every safari lodge in Africa claims to be a purveyor of ecotourism. Green Awards are handed out like medals at a charity run and the most decorated are often those which best schmooze the travel media. By now the term 'ecotourism' has been so abused it is considered a dirty word by many in the industry. The Africa’s Finest team spent three years searching for what they believe are the real eco-heroes of the safari industry, starting with a list of around 1 000 possibles. That was whittled down to about 250 probables, and from there 170 places were selected to visit and conduct strict enviro-evaluations. They audited their energy outputs and looked in their dustbins (or waste pits) and down their toilets, checked their conservation credentials and evaluated their community partnerships. In short, they conducted probably the most extensive enviro-assessment of the African safari industry of its kind ever undertaken. They have weeded out the trumpet-blowers and the green-washers, the bull-talkers and the money-launderers of the industry to showcase only those places with real green heart and soul. If any game lodge or safari camp does not feature in this book, there is likely a good reason. Some promising facilities are new with little measurable track record, others they could not visit in time, and, thus, have placed these in a 'Places to Watch' category. If they did miss any great camps or lodges, they will add them to their website www.africasfinest.co.za. Throughout the project they have remained totally independent: no one paid for their travel to visit or assess these destinations, and no one paid to be included in this book. Africa’s Finest is the green safari treasure map to this exhilarating continent.

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Travel

Bartholomeu

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us Klip

Just over an hour's drive from Cape Town, Bartholomeus Klip welcomes you with its wonderfully restored Victorian homestead, friendly staff and peaceful country atmosphere. Resident chef Louise Gillett (who has recently published her first cookbook) serves excellent, imaginative food with a focus on local produce and award-winning wines from the region. Simply Green visited recently. This is our report.

T

his renowned getaway, located in the scenic Riebeek Valley just a bit further than a stone's throw from the hustle

and bustle of Cape Town, is on a little more than 4  000ha of private nature reserve which boasts over 500 head of game, a working farm, wheatlands, flocks of sheep and a buffalo breeding project. No more than 10 guests are present at a time, so quietude and serenity come with the package. Despite the numerous activities available either on the farm itself or nearby, which range from walking, hiking and mountain biking to canoeing and bird-watching, many visitors go to Bartholomeus Klip for the peace and quiet in elegantly rural comfort. Bartholomeus Klip offers an outstanding base for further exploration of the Cape's Winelands. There is a long history of hospitality at Bartholomeus

Klip,

which

shows

in

the

welcoming smiles that greet guests and the relaxed atmosphere of the homestead. We were encouraged to make the house our own, which we did, taking seats in one of the reception rooms where an open fire crackled in the fireplace while we browsed through a wide selection of coffee

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table and reference books on everything from the San, First Peoples of this land, to the healing plants of the fynbos kingdom. The farmhouse has a feeling of longstanding solidity, an anchor into the land away from the crazy lifestyle of the city which most of us experience. It's hard to say how much one can enjoy just stopping and sitting on the broad verandah that winds around the house, enjoying late afternoon winter sunshine. There are four double rooms with bathrooms in the beautifully-furnished farmhouse and one separate suite outside, with its own secluded verandah looking over the veld and up to the mountains which lie beyond. Finishes everywhere are luxurious and stylish, with crisp cotton bedding, elegant fabrics and Victorian-style bathrooms. You can explore the unique blend of agriculture

The reserve, which was established in the '70s,

and conservation, and learn about the buffalo

has abundant herds of eland, springbuck, black

and quagga breeding projects on the farm. Cycle

wildebeest, zebra and bontebok, as well as other

through the farmlands or the reserve, canoe or

animals, such as baboons, bat-eared foxes, lynxes,

windsurf on the lake-sized dam, swim in the circular

and smaller species of antelope. Several different

salt-water pool, go birdwatching, or hike through the

leopards have been photographed in the reserve by

wonderful variety of the fynbos. Or, perhaps best of

trail cameras, usually at night time.

all, just switch off and absorb the timeless peace of

Although fynbos in this region is naturally poor

Bartholomeus Klip. That's what we did – aside from

in birdlife, there are some ostrich, once farmed here

reading up on Bushmen, healing plants and related

in large flocks at the height of the ostrich feather

matters.

boom in the 1870s, which today are one of the

But if you feel the need, there are many different

leopard's favourite foods. The magnificent black

things to do at Bartholomeus Klip. Mountain bikes

eagle (correctly known as Verreaux's eagle) nests

are provided for cycling through the reserve or along

in the mountains, and the enormous dam near to

the farm roads through the wheatfields, and there

the farmhouse has a spectacular array of water

are plenty of wonderful routes to choose for walks.

birds; some resident like the fish eagles and the

They also, almost uniquely in this area, offer archery,

kingfishers, and others, such as the pelicans and the

which is, not surprisingly, proving very popular.

spoonbills, being less regular visitors.

Down at the dam guests can take to the water in

Flamingos have also been seen in some of

canoes and kayaks, or go windsurfing, freshwater

Bartholomeus Klip's smaller dams and there are

fishing or bird watching.

a host of interesting large and small birds out in

Most guests take advantage of morning and evening nature drives through the reserve with experienced

rangers,

where

there

is

the reserve and on the wheatlands, including large flocks of the blue crane, SA's national bird.

always

Perhaps the most important inhabitant of the

something different to discover. We have to admit

reserve, however, is a far smaller creature: the

that we did not – simply relaxing and destressing

endangered geometric tortoise, one of the world's

were the main points on our agenda during our

rarest reptiles, safe here in its last remaining viable

all-too-brief visit; along with enjoying some really

habitat near Cape Town.

scrumptious food, of course.

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If you can make the time and if there's space

For the more roving types, some of the most

available, do not hesitate to go visit the place and

picturesque parts of the Cape are all in easy reach,

its friendly folk. We can recommend this getaway as

including Riebeek Kasteel and Tulbagh, as well as

among the very best we have experienced anywhere.

the up and coming wineries of the Swartland or,

SG

slightly farther afield, Franschhoek and Stellenbosch.

For more info visit www.bartholomeusklip.com.


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R ecipes Cider and fynbos-honey roasted pork Prepare the pork the day before you intend roasting it by patting it dry with paper towel, then refrigerating it uncovered in a roasting pan. This will help crisp up the skin. To prepare the pork: Preheat the oven to 200°C. Sprinkle salt over the skin of the pork. Pour the olive oil and water into the previously used roasting pan. Place the pork into the roasting pan, skin side up. Bake for 20 minutes until the skin starts to bubble, then reduce the heat to 190°C and bake for another 90 minutes. The skin should be crisp and the meat succulent and pink, not bloody. Leave to rest for 10 minutes. To make the jus: In a saucepan, heat the honey over medium heat until it starts to caramelise. Add the cider and chicken stock and let the mixture boil for 20 minutes to reduce by half. Whisk in the butter before serving. The butter will give the sauce a good shine. For the apples: Preheat the oven to 180°C. Carefully score a very shallow line around the circumference of each apple; be careful not to cut through the apple’s flesh. This ensures that the apples will not burst in the oven. Place the apples in an ovenproof dish. Sprinkle with the cinnamon sugar and drizzle over the melted butter. Bake for 15 minutes until the apples are golden brown and cooked through. To assemble: Place the pork on a serving platter, drizzle over the jus and arrange the cinnamon apples on the side. Serves 8 Chef’s note: The pork’s cooking time is 20 minutes per 450 g or until the juices run clear.

Walnut pie For the pastry: Place the flour, castor sugar and butter into a food processor and pulse until the mixture is crumbly. Add the egg and pulse to combine. If the mixture is too crumbly, add a few tablespoons of water until the desired consistency is reached. Remove the pastry, place onto a lightly floured surface and knead until smooth. Cut off two-thirds of the dough and wrap the remaining dough in clingfilm and refrigerate. Roll out the dough on the floured surface. Press the dough over the base and against the sides of a 20cm tart tin, prick the base a few times with a fork and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes. To make the filling: Heat the sugar in a saucepan over low heat until it turns a caramel colour. Turn off the heat but keep the saucepan on the warmed plate and add the chopped walnuts. Add the cream while stirring continuously. Preheat the oven to 180°C. To assemble: Remove the pastry base from the fridge and evenly spread the hot cream mixture over it. On a lightly floured surface, roll out the remaining pastry to make a lid for the pie. Place the lid over the pie and seal the edges by pinching the dough together. Prick the centre of the lid with a fork and bake for 25-30 minutes. Remove and decorate with walnut halves. Bake for a further 15 minutes until golden brown. Remove from the oven and serve with dollops of crème fraîche. makes 1 standard-sized pie Chef’s note: Walnuts can be substituted with pecan nuts, as they are very similar. Pecan nuts are a bit milder and sweeter than walnuts.

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Pork • • • •

3 kg rack of pork, scored salt to taste 2 Tbsp olive oil ½ cup water

Cider & honey jus • ¼ cup fynbos honey • 440 ml cider • 2 cups brown chicken stock • 50 ml chilled butter

Apples • 6 pink apples • cinnamon sugar (50g sugar mixed with • 2 tsp ground cinnamon) • 100 ml melted butter

Pastry • 175 g cake flour • 75 g castor sugar • 100 g salted butter at room temperature • 1 small egg, lightly beaten

Filling • 100 g castor sugar • 90 g walnuts, roughly chopped • 50 ml double cream

To assemble • extra walnuts, halved • crème fraîche

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Advertorial

Birding & Wildlife in the Okavango

Falcon Africa Safaris offer tailor-made safaris and beach holidays packages, as well as incentives and group travel, specialising in East Africa, Southern Africa and the Indian Ocean Islands. We take a look at their Okavango Delta option.

M

achaba Camp is situated in the game rich Khwai area, on the eastern tongue of the Okavango Delta. The name Machaba is the local Setswana name for the Sycamore Fig Tree, the tree of life. The Machaba tree abounds in the Okavango Delta and most African riverine forests. Machaba trees are renowned for their abundant fruit, which feed a vast array of animals throughout the year, including elephant, baboons, bush buck, green pigeons and many more. The camp is built in the classic 1950's style, with luxury safari tents, en-suite bathrooms and living areas, not forgetting the romantic outdoor showers. All the tents are situated on the ground and the pathways to the tents meander between the large riverine trees. All 10 luxury tents are situated in the beautiful riverine treeline on the Khwai River, overlooking the famous Moremi Game Reserve. From these tented verandas one can watch the daily parade of animals coming down to drink at the river in front of camp. The camp consists of 8 luxury twin tents and 2 luxury family tents. Children of all ages are welcome at the camp; however a private vehicle will need to be booked for families with children under the age of 6 years old.

The birding at Machaba during the summer months is superb with all the migrants in for the season. The diverse vegetation habitat enables birders and game watchers alike to explore different habitats to see the species that occur there. The Khwai river enables one to view all the water birds that occur in the area up close and is ideal for getting that perfect shot. From fish eagles to kingfishers who frequent the river. Take a slow drive down the river taking time to set up the perfect shot, tripod out and having the flexibility to alight from the vehicle to get it. Sit at the numerous hippo pools and wait for interaction on the shoreline or get lucky with a fish eagle hunting its prey in the lagoons. Follow the jacana’s as they go about feeding on the lily pads with their chicks, while snapping a few pics of the elephants feeding on the new shoots in the river. Wander inland into the mopane forest to try find Arnots Chat’s which frequent this area. And after a hard day of birding and game watching enjoy a well-deserved sundowner overlooking the African plains. And what better way to end the day than around the camp fire for a traditional meal and some good stories from the day.

R15 900.00 pp sharing, all inclusive

(flights from Jhb, taxes, 3 nights accommodation, meals, select drinks, game drives & park fees

Visit their Facebook page for itineraries with prices. www.falcon-africa.co.za S G 154


Garden

Birds in your    garden South Africa hosts an incredible diversity of birds and whether you are a keen birder, a mad twitcher or just appreciate the presence and antics of our feathered wildlife, creating a bird-friendly garden is a rewarding and worthwhile experience. Anja Teroerde reports.

N

ot only do birds make your garden come alive with sound and colour, pollinate your flowers, distribute seeds, and control insect populations, but they are also

incredibly important components of our ecosystem. By creating a habitat for them you are doing your bit for biodiversity and conservation.

Be diverse The best way to go about attracting a large variety of birds to your garden is to make as many as possible feel at home. Different birds prefer different habitats and eat different things, so you need to provide them with the food, shelter and nesting material they require. By creating a variety of microhabitats the number of different birds that visit your garden will greatly increase. Birds eat nectar, fruit, seeds or insects. If you can provide all of these in addition to water and different types of

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shelter and nesting opportunities your garden will soon become a most popular bird haven.

Go local South Africa is blessed with an enormous diversity of indigenous plants and trees that are attractive and ornamental species. Choose the largest variety possible for your garden and give preference to plants that occur naturally in your area. Not only will they thrive because they are better adapted to local weather and soil conditions, require less water and fertiliser, but they also attract birds and insects that are adapted to them. Local plants flower and bear

Provide water

fruit at times that coincide with the birds breeding

Providing a reliable source of fresh water will ensure

and migration seasons and birds prefer plants they

birds keep returning to your garden, especially in

are familiar with. But birds are not the only reason

arid regions. While beautiful and elaborate bird

to get rid of alien plants in your garden. One of

baths can be purchased in most garden centres,

the biggest threats to biodiversity everywhere is

a simple bird bath can be created cheaply using

alien invasive organisms. By removing alien plants

household materials. Just make sure the material

such as Jacaranda, Poplar, Lantana, Queen of the

doesn't rust and poison the birds and has no sharp

Night, Prickly Pear, Morning Glory and Cat's Claw

edges. Also keep in mind that birds prefer natural

Creeper you are contributing directly to biodiversity

rough surfaces to slippery plastic ones, so lining

conservation.

the bath with pebbles and surrounding it with

Go organic

rocks for perching is a good idea. Birds do not like to enter water of an unknown depth so your bird

Spraying poison on your plants will poison the

bath should be shallow, at least around the edges.

animals living there too. Rather let the birds, bats,

Its position will determine what birds are attracted

lizards and spiders help you control your garden

to it. Some birds prefer to approach water under

insect population. Birds love gnats, mosquitoes,

cover, while others require an open view to scan

ants, grubs, termites, snails and slugs. And

for approaching predators. An elevated bird bath

removing alien plants will largely remove their alien

is preferred by many species as it protects them

pests as well. A wide variety of organic pest control

from predators, but some birds will only use water

options are available today, but if you have a diverse

at ground level. If possible try to cater for everyone

indigenous garden you can mostly let nature take

and provide water at different levels with varying

its course.

degrees of cover. Ideally the bath should have a

Be a bit messy Don't be too quick to pick up dropped fruits and berries, as they provide food for many birds. Leave

S G 156

Spraying poison on your plants will poison the animals living there too. Rather let the birds, bats, lizards and spiders help you control your garden insect population.

slow drip through system and not be in full sun or full shade, with some easily accessible cover nearby that birds can fly to when alarmed.

dried flower heads hanging for a little while before

Provide food & shelter

nipping them off and give birds a chance to pick

The best way to feed birds is to provide plants that

out the seeds. Leaving some fallen branches, leaves

will offer a natural and reliable supply of nectar,

and logs on the ground will provide nesting material

seeds, fruit and insects.

and attract grubs, worms and other insects that the

Aloes, Cape honeysuckle, Red-hot pokers,

birds eat. Dead logs and branches also make great

Watsonia's, Leonotis and Strelitzia are excellent

nesting places. Mulch the ground between your

nectar-bearing choices to attract sunbirds and other

plants and create a compost heap. Reduce your

nectar-eating species.

lawn area. Only a small number of dominant birds

Plant a variety of local grasses and let them go to

such as doves, pigeons and wagtails are attracted

seed to attract canaries, weavers, bishops, whydahs

to lawns.

and waxbills. Flowers such as marigolds and daisies


territories accordingly.

also attract seed-eating birds. Established trees offer a diverse food menu, shelter and plenty of nesting opportunities for

Provide nesting places

various types of birds. Having at least one large

Birds prefer to breed in nests they have constructed

tree in your garden will greatly increase the number

themselves, but if out of options they readily use

of birds you attract. If you can, select fruit-bearing

man-made hostels. Therefore the best way to up

trees occurring naturally in your area. Good choices

your real estate value is to provide nesting space

are Wild Fig, White Stinkwood, Wild Plum, Kei Apple,

in thickets, shrubs and trees, material for nest

Wild Peach, Acacia species, Wild Olives and Scotias.

building such as twigs, grasses and dead leaves,

Plant

creepers

like

Wild

Jasmine,

Cape

and opportunities for hole-nesting birds. If there is

honeysuckle and Clematis around fences, walls and

an alien or redundant tree in your garden consider

gates and create thickets that offer plenty of shelter

ring barking instead of removing it, and only cutting

and nesting space for birds. Make sure some of the

off the dangerous branches. A dead tree is a very

hedges are as far from the activity of the house as

attractive nesting ground. Otherwise sisal logs are

possible for shy thrushes, shrikes and coucals.

available in most nurseries and once hung up they

If your garden is lacking in a food source you can

are quickly excavated by barbets and woodpeckers,

supplementary feed using any of the large variety of

and in turn used by a variety of birds as nesting

available bird feeders. You can also simply lay out

holes.

fruit, seeds or bonemeal but be careful to not place

It really does not take much to make birds feel

the food in places where predators can reach. Also

at home and they will gratefully accept any bit of

realise that once you start a regular feeding scheme

natural vegetation on offer. So if you create a locally

you should stick to it, as the birds will come to rely

indigenous and diverse garden you will soon be

on your supply and select their breeding sites and

'waking up with the mossies'.

SG

Join Struik Nature this November for the Birds & People launch. The definitive ground-breaking book on the relationship between birds and humankind, with contributions from bird enthusiasts from all over the world. Mark CoCker will be in South afriCa to launCh birdS & PeoPle Cape Town (Kelvin Grove) 19 November 2013 – CliCk here To Book Johannesburg (Sasol Auditorium) 21 November 2013 – CliCk here To Book Preorder SPeCial!

receive 20% discount when you pre-order Birds & People before the 14th November. Visit www.randomstruik.co.za/birdsandpeople for more newly releaSed: newMan’S birdS of Southern afriCa aPP for iPhone/iPad/iPod Based on the 2010 commemorative edition of Newman’s Birds of Southern Africa, one of the most popular birding guides in southern Africa. See more at: http://www.newmansbirdsapp.com Full version: https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/newmansbirds-southern-africa/id722185873?ls=1&mt=8 lite version: https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/newmansbirds-southern-africa/id730279993?ls=1&mt=8

500 bird Calls in Southern africa (Doug Newman)

Sasol birds of Sa iV (Ian Sinclair; Phil Hockey; Peter Ryan; Warwick Tarboton Illustrator: Norman Arlott)

birds of the indian ocean islands (Ian Sinclair & Oliver Langrand)

Join our Struik nature Club http://www.randomstruik.co.za/natureclub/

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Falcon Africa Safaris - Tour Operators into Africa since 1990

With years of experience and based in the heart of the Garden Route, Hello Garden Route are your friendly experts in tailor-made vacations. They provide unrivalled, first-hand expertise ensuring an exceptional, hassle-free holiday. Let them be your one-stop travel shop for booking accommodation, tours, transfers, car rental and activities. They also specialise in Cape Town, Winelands and Whale Coast travel. Hello Garden Route rates Auberge Du Cap as a Top Luxury Accommodation Guest House in Camps Bay. Enquiries: info@hellogardenroute.co.za www.hellogardenroute.co.za

Wildlife: Gorilla Trekking in Rwanda or Uganda; The Wildebeest Migration in Kenya or Tanzania; The Okavango Delta; Chobe National Park; Victoria Falls. Beach Holidays: Zanzibar; Mozambique; Seychelles; Kenya Visit their facebook page for itineraries with prices. www.falcon-africa.co.za

Birding Ecotours Join Birding Ecotours on an unforgettable birding adventure to SA, Namibia, Uganda, Tanzania, Peru, the USA, Borneo, Thailand, China, India, New Guinea, Australia and more! We use the best guides and we donate to conservation. www.birdingecotours.co.za • info@birdingecotours.co.za

Join us on our professionally guided birding, wildlife, photographic & anthropological tours. Choose from 250 tours to around 100 destinations worldwide! We offer professional tour leaders, small groups, solid value for money and a long established reputation. +27 33 394 0225 • email • web • facebook

SATORI FARM

For a complete getaway from it all, back to nature, stunning views and countryside, a time and place to connect with your family with no distractions. Go hiking up the mountains or walking by the river, relax by the fire, eat good home cooked food. Get involved with a little creativity, with a pencil or paintbrush. A different type of holiday but one of the best you'll have. For info on rates and more contact Louise: 082 551 7402 • louiseghersie@vodamail.co.za Visit www.satorifarm.co.za.

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POTTERS PLACE

Potters Place is simply a unique setting. It’s a Cape Vernacular style home set in a private farm like garden. Although you are in the heart of Cape Town, seconds from upmarket shopping centres and restaurants, once you drive through the gates of the private estate it becomes a nature lover’s world. Solar heated pool, 60 lemon trees, a natural spring dam is the perfect place to come back and relax after a day sightseeing Cape Town. Enquiries: chintaxpam@chintaxsa.co.za or pam.sutton2@gmail.com.


'When one tugs at a single thing in nature, one finds it attached to the rest of the world' John Muir, naturalist, author, conservationist

Contact us Website Birds and Bees

B T

irdsand ees

here are many beautiful Water Wise plants that can be planted in your garden to attract birds and bees. Besides adding colour and life to your garden, birds and bees are both essential pollinators that ensure that plants are able to successfully reproduce. Water Wise and Life is a Garden recently launched the exciting new #WaterWise campaign at nurseries and garden centres within Rand Water’s area of supply. Included in this campaign is information on how to attract birds and bees to your garden, as well as what types of plants are most suitable in creating a birdand bee-friendly garden. These posters and z-folders are also available on our website.

For more information on Bird- and Bee-friendly gardening, please visit www.randwater.co.za and click on the Water Wise logo or contact us on 0860 10 10 60.

For example, strelitzia, lavender and agapanthus will attract nectar-loving bees, while acacias will attract insect eating birds such as crested barbets and cape wagtails. Remember that birds are also very important seed dispersal agents.


A d vert o r i al


Switch/A101697/enviroment/print

Find partnerships in unlikely places. Since 1993, we have collected no less than 950 000 tons of cans from our surrounding environments. By partnering with Collect-a-Can, we can increase this recovery rate and further conserve and sustain the environment. To find out how we can keep our country beautiful contact us on (011) 466 2939 or visit www.collectacan.co.za. Recycle cans today. Sustain tomorrow.

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Garden A healthy organic garden should always have a few pests, as these encourage beneficial insects, reducing the need for pest control. However, when there are more than a few and they begin destroying the garden, we need to do something about it. Jane Griffiths suggests some plants we can use in our arsenal against the bug brigade.

B

elow are some of my favourite pest repelling plants – you can also use lavender, thyme, mint, citrus pelargonium, catnip, lemongrass, basil and sage. All the following plants

have strong-smelling leaves, which few bugs can withstand. Grow these among flowers and vegetables to dissuade harmful pests, use the leaves as pest-repelling mulch or whip up an inexpensive home-made spray. They perform a multitude of functions in the organic garden: Scatter torn up leaves as mulch under vulnerable seedlings or on top of a seed bed; Scatter torn-up leaves between the leaves of cabbages, cauliflower or broccoli to repel leaf-eating worms; Place leaves underneath strawberries to protect them from snails; Plant among fruit trees and on borders of vegetable beds to help repel harmful insects; Use to make a spray (see recipe on page 166).

African wormwood This tall grey-green shrub is a valuable addition to the vegetable flower garden as it has very strong-smelling leaves, which few bugs can withstand. Indigenous to SA, it is a member of a large family of plants containing more than 400 species. In the garden: African wormwood grows easily from seedlings or cuttings and is unfussy about soil. It likes full sun and, once established, it becomes a large, bushy and drought-resistant plant. It needs little more than an occasional cutting back and can grow up to 2m tall. In early spring, cut it back by two-thirds to encourage new growth.

Tansy This sprawling plant with yellow button flowers has such good insect-repelling properties it was once used to embalm bodies and slow decomposition. Tansy is an excellent companion plant in a vegetable and herb garden. Despite it repelling many harmful insects, I recently discovered that it is a 'Mecca plant' for ladybirds. Judging by their behaviour in my garden they find tansy an aphrodisiac.

herbal defence S G 162


defence force 163 S G


In the garden: Feverfew grows easily from seed and will

'Pesticides came about after the first world war. Some brainy petrochemical money maker said, "Hey, that mustard gas worked great on people, maybe we could dilute it down and spray it on our crops to deal with pests".'

self-seed in the places it grows best, but never become a

– Woody Harrelson

In the garden: Tansy grows in most soils and likes full sun. It doesn't like having wet feet, so make sure the soil is well-drained and you don't over-water it. It grows into quite a bushy, straggly plant by sending out vigorous rhizomes, and can be invasive. Keep it in check by continually cutting it back and pulling out the new growth around the edges of the main plant.

Feverfew With

attractive

white

flowers

and

insect-repelling

properties, feverfew is a useful plant in an organic garden. It has a magical reputation of protecting against illness and injury – particularly effective for people who are accident prone. Feverfew contains pyrethrins but is not as

Rhubarb

African Wormwood

Elder

strong as a true pyrethrum plant.

Feverfew

Tansy

S G 164


problem plant. It likes well-drained soil in full sun.

any Harry Potter fan knows, its wood is used to make

Dead head flowers often to keep it in bloom. It dies

powerful wands and magical apparatus. However,

back over winter in colder areas but soon pops up

throughout history, it has also been associated with

in spring.

death. These beliefs relating to both life and death make sense when you realise that parts of the elder

Elder

are poisonous and others are deliciously edible.

The elder is associated with many legends and

In the garden: This large, deciduous shrub likes full

ancient magic. It is believed to protect and bring

sun and well-drained soil. It is a helpful tree near a

luck as well as clear negativity, sorcery and evil. As

compost heap, as its wide-spreading roots assist

Plant

How to use

Repels

African wormwood

• As a spray • Scatter between leaves of vulnerable plants to repel leaf-eating caterpillars • Use leaves as insect repelling mulch • Scatter over newly seeded areas or in among seedlings

Ants, white fly, aphids, caterpillars, snails, slugs, moths

Tansy

• As a spray • Plant in borders and vegetable beds or plant in pots and place where needed • Good under roses and fruit trees

Ants, white fly, fruit fly, beetles, flies, moths

Feverfew

• As a spray • Plant in borders and vegetable beds • Good under roses and fruit trees • Flowers can be dried and ground into an insect repelling powder

Caterpillars, flies, aphids, fruit fly, white fly, moths

Elder

• As a spray • Use leaves as insect repelling mulch • Dry leaves to use as ant or flea repellant

Fleas, ants, aphids, moths, beetles, white fly

• Use only as spray

General insecticide

Rhubarb

165 S G


in breaking down the compost. Its leaves repel numerous insects.

Rhubarb Rhubarb leaves contain high levels of oxalic acid, which makes them poisonous to humans, but helps prevent disease in other plants. Oxalic acid is particularly useful in preventing club root, a fungal disease affecting members of the brassica family. In the garden: Rhubarb's root system is called a crown – the more robust this is, the stronger and more prolific the plant will be. Enrich the soil with compost and plant crowns 10cm deep in early spring. Only harvest after the first year of planting, so crowns become well established. If looked after, rhubarb will continue to provide

Basic pest-repelling spray • ½ bucket leaves and stems of elder, tansy, feverfew or African wormwood. • just-boiled water. • 2 tablespoons dish washing liquid. Add the water to the bucket of leaves and stems, stir and leave to stand overnight. Strain, add the dish washing liquid and mix. Spray onto affected plants every few days as this herbal insecticide breaks down quickly. Make sure you spray underneath the leaves as well as on top.

for many years.

TIPS

Rhubarb spray: You'll need 500g of chopped

• The spray will keep for up to a month.

rhubarb

• To increase the efficacy of the basic spray include

leaves

and

one

tablespoon

of

dishwashing liquid. Boil leaves in 1l of water for 30 minutes. Cool and strain. Mix with soap and spray. (It breaks down in sunlight, so spray on a cloudy day or in the evening.) Can keep in the

garlic, onion and chilli. Chop up finely and add to the plants with the boiling water. • Don't discard the leaves and stems after straining – add them to your compost.

fridge for up to two weeks. (Water the ground

• To repel wool eating moths, dry the leaves of elder,

with a rhubarb drench before sowing seeds or

tansy, feverfew or African wormwood and place in

transplanting Brassica seedlings).

single socks. Tie the top closed with a ribbon and tuck

SG

among your woolies. (Now you have a use for those single socks that we all seem to gather.)

JANE’S DELICIOUS

GARDENING CALENDAR 2014

Jane Griffiths, SA's organic vegetable gardening guru, brings you a beautiful monthly gardening inspiration calendar for 2014, which includes: country-wide sowing and planting information for each month; monthly advice to keep your garden productive and healthy; useful watering, fertilising and pest control tips; harvesting and preserving ideas; gorgeous monthly photographs; and phases of the moon This would make an ideal Christmas gift, and is available at book stores now. Visit Jane's Delicious Garden at www.janesdeliciousgarden.com or email Jane on info@janesdeliciousgarden.com Photographs: Jane Griffiths & Keith Knowlton. SOURCES: Jane's Delicious Garden, Sunbird Publishers, a division of Jonathan Ball Publishers.

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Gardens to Inspire Keith Kirsten Struik Lifestyle • 978 1 4317 0095 0

As may be expected from this guru of gardening, this large coffee table book is beautifully presented with some stunning images and pictures of gorgeous gardens that, well, inspire, just as the title says. One could waffle on, but there’s really no point. If you are into gardens and gardening in a big way, you’ll love this book. Go take a look in the bookshop – but be warned, if you are drawn by these sorts of books, expect to walk out with it as well.

Pocket Guide Series Trees of Southern Africa Piet van Wyk Butterflies of Southern Africa Steve Woodhall Struik Nature • 9781 9205 7202 0 & 978 1 9205 7247 1

These pocket guides are designed to be just that – instant field reference books that are easy and light to carry through the bush where you’re most likely to need them, and easy to use and navigate. As is standard for this format, each species of tree or butterfly is illustrated with clear pictures, with other relevant images (flowers, leaves, and so on, of trees; life stages of butterflies) plus descriptions of distribution and habitats. Either/both are indispensible for the dedicated tree/butterfly lovers out there.

Common Wild Flowers of Table Mountain Hugh Clarke, Bruce Mackenzie & Corinne Merry Struik Nature • 978 1 7758 4039 8

This book is aimed at flower-lovers, hikers, mountaineers (say the authors, the premise being that ‘mountaineers’ would consider our little flat-top a ‘real mountain’) and tourists who want to know more about special flowers

that thrive on this emblematic part of the Cape. Good pictures, plenty of support information and schematics of the walks and trails of the mountain all add up to something most backpackers walking the mountain’s trails may well find both useful and interesting – another dimension to add to the standard pleasures that strolling on our beautiful berg usually bring.

Wild Flowers of Southeast Botswana Gwithie Kirby Struik Nature • 978 1 7758 4033 6

Surprisingly, Botswana has many more flowers than one might expect, so much of it being arid and semidesert. Many of these flowers extend their range into the northern parts of SA which adjoin Botswana. In all, some 330 species are featured in this fine handbook, which is substantial enough to make it quite a bit more than a field handbook, though it could work as one. The images are excellent and the information thorough. A must-have if you are floristically oriented.

Fifty Plants that Changed the Course of History Bill Laws Struik Nature • 978 1 7700 7858 1

Most people don’t really think about plants as such. We buy them every day – in the food we eat and sometimes to plant to cut flowers or even herbal treatments. But if one stops to think about the role of plants, located in the broad tree of life somewhere between phytoplankton and complex animal species, one realises that our very existence literally rests on them. There are many surprises between these pages – like the history of wheat, to take but one example, which very few people really know. If you are into plants, as so many people are, this book will provide many hours of fascinating reading – and a lot of useful information. Definitely worthwhile.

167 S G


Garden

Feeding your Garden Feeding your garden is as important as feeding yourself and your family. Just as regular, healthy meals contribute to your wellbeing, so too will the same approach to your garden ensure happy, healthy plants. Lindsay Gray reports.

Y

our garden – including the many birds,

balanced with dry (brown) material that is usually

insects and reptiles that it supports – is

abundant in winter, layered together in a contained

totally reliant on what you provide to

area (small or large, depending on the size of

maintain its health and vigour. In undisturbed

your property) where it is allowed to decompose.

areas, nature will play her part in depositing old

The material should be turned with a garden fork

leaves that slowly build a layer of rich, decomposed

approximately four weeks after the heap is at a

material that protects the soil. Over time, all manner

reasonable level to gauge its readiness and then

of wildlife deposit their excreta onto the ground,

left for another two to three weeks as you deem

which also decomposes naturally and, together,

necessary.

these elements feed the soil.

soil with a mix of nutrients and micro-organisms.

allowed the opportunity to play its natural role as

Modern horticultural practice dictates that you layer

we tend to remove it all before it has time to settle

this compost on top of the soil in your garden beds

and decompose. For this reason, gardeners need to

as a protective layer – or 'mulch' – instead of digging

embark on an active feeding program throughout

it in as gardeners did some years ago. Earthworms

the year that should comprise composting and

and other organisms will steadily work the compost

fertilising.

into the soil, ensuring a friable, healthy medium. It

Compost It is so rewarding to make your own compost. All

S G 168

The resultant gorgeous, black gold will feed your

In a manicured garden, organic waste is seldom

is surprising to see just how quickly the compost is absorbed into the top layer of soil and how frequently you will need to replenish it.

you need is a supply of fresh (green) matter such

The mulch will also help the soil to retain

as lawn clippings, soft wood cuttings from shrubs

moisture and protect it from wind damage. There

that you have pruned and peels from the kitchen,

are other media that can be used to mulch the soil


such decorative gravel, bark chips or shredded

moisture in the soil and increases the moisture level

bark, nut shells, straw and even thin layers of dried

of the plant's cell sap, which strengthens the plant's

grass clippings.

resistance to frost and drought damage.

Fertiliser

fertiliser at the rate of 60 – 80 grams per square

To keep your plants and lawn in top condition and

metre throughout your garden beds, cover it with

ensure healthy blooms, your garden will benefit

thick layer of compost and give the beds a deep

enormously from a regular feed of a quality organic

watering.

General Application : Once you have spread the

Lawns will benefit from regular, low doses of

fertiliser. Neutrog's Bounce Back is an organic, all-purpose

a fertiliser high in nitrogen, especially during the

fertiliser containing a full range of minerals, macro

cutting season, and here Neutrog's Blade Runner

– and micro-nutrients that will boost the plants in

will do the trick. It is the crumbled version of

their growing season and build their resistance to

Bounce Back and is convenient to use in a fertiliser

both frost and heat damage. It will also improve the

spreader cart. Depending on the size of your lawn

overall condition of the soil.

– and your lifestyle – you can either apply 40g per

Neutrog's Rapid Raiser is an excellent additive

square metre at monthly intervals or 60-80g per

to the soil in the planting season as the product

square metre every six weeks, during the growing

contains bonemeal which encourages new growth

season.

and healthy blooms, especially in seedlings and

warm, rainy months left before we move on to

perennials that have been split and replanted. Seamungus,

the

most

recent

addition

In summer rainfall areas, we still have several

to

Neutrog's organic range, combines composted poultry manure with kelp and fish waste. Kelp has

autumn and winter, so plan a menu for your garden that you can build on in the coming years. For gardeners in winter rainfall areas, your

been used in agriculture for thousands of years and

garden will benefit from some TLC now to tide it

contributes a variety of minerals, trace elements,

over the cooler, rainy months. Happy gardening. S G

growth stimulants, vitamins, enzymes and proteins to the plant. Kelp also assists with retaining

See ad below for more

169 S G


Home A growing number of people are seeing the effects of the ever-increasing water crisis, not just in South Africa but globally, with most places either getting too little, too much – or at the wrong times. Water seems more polluted than ever and it is becoming a scarce commodity. Most people don't actually think about the supply of water and seem to take it for granted. We take a look at water and how crucial it is for all of us to care for this vital resource.

Rainwater S G 170


harvesting 171 S G


W

ater is easy to ignore provided you can still turn on a tap and something drinkable comes out. Even with climate change, we still have

roughly the same amount of water in our ecosystems, but the supply of fresh, drinkable water faces a three-pronged attack from population growth, climate change and industrialisation. Rainwater harvesting is there to cater to the issue

The bare essentials of rainwater harvesting revolve around the schemes of trapping, storing, treating and conveying. Any surface paved or otherwise comes up as the catchment areas of rainwater.

of water scarcity or variability in delivery (from the sky or the taps). This is particularly true of the areas prone

Storage is one of the most important elements of

to drought and famines. Many agricultural-based rural

rainwater harvesting. Obviously, the mechanism to

communities have resorted to rainwater harvesting to

assist in the storability of rainwater depends on the

see them through dry seasons. As it currently stands,

amount required to be stored. The frequency and

there's not enough water to go around. And it is only

exposure of the given area to rainfall also determines

going to get worse unless we do something about it;

the nature and use of storage devices.

and we need to start locally in our own homes. We need

Irrespective of the nature and kind of storage

to change our attitudes towards water use – and we

device, there should be preventive measures against

need to do it fast.

contaminating and polluting agents. It is also important

So now it is time to work with nature, especially

to minimise the loss of water through leaks or overflow,

when mankind is surrounded by a diverse array of

and fungal growth must be arrested. Chlorine is

natural resources. You may call it the boon of Mother

frequently added as one of the cleansing means when

Nature. Rainwater harvesting, defined as the collection

the water use is intended for human consumption. But

of rainwater for the purpose of future use and re-use,

it may be wiser to boil the rainwater in solar cookers or

can be deemed to be a good start as one form of

expose it to UV.

conservation.

Start with making a water chart that should include

Interestingly, the oft-repeated idea of rain water

knowing your average annual rainfall, roof catchment

harvesting isn't something totally new. It may be as old

area, cost and location of rain harvesting tank and your

as the Bible with its roots being traced to the ancient

current garden's watering needs.

days of Greece and Rome, and quite possibly may be

Be aware that gutters which pond water can create

older yet, with evidence of some truly ancient water

mosquito breeding habitats and may incubate bacteria.

collection systems to be found in Meso-American ruins.

Prevent leaves and debris from blocking gutters by

The most important part of the hydrological cycle

installing a fireproof mesh gutter system.

is played by rain. By way of rainwater harvesting, you

Tanks should be positioned in a shady spot,

maximise the usefulness of rainwater, ensuring as little

preferably away from trees to prevent leaves and other

as possible goes to waste. Rooftops serve to trap the

detritus from contaminating water.

flow off of rain water and local catchments can aid in its

Maintenance is one of the most important factors

collection. Make sure your roof surface is suitable for

to ensure good quality water. Clean the inside of the

collecting quality rainwater. Some roofs are composed

tank every few years, as sediment will accumulate.

of lead-based paints and flashing, and tar-based

All components, including gutters, rain heads, water

coatings. Be certain that your roof is non-toxic. Steel

diverters and water tanks, should be checked and

sheets, well-fired glazed tiles, concrete or cement tiles,

maintained regularly.

clay tiles, and composite tiles are popular choices safe for rainwater collection. The bare essentials of rainwater harvesting revolve around the schemes of trapping, storing, treating and

And remember to routinely check your taps for drips, your geyser and storage systems for leaks and, if possible, monitor your water usage to spot an unseen leak in good time.

conveying. Any surface paved or otherwise comes up as

Using all these techniques, and treating water like

the catchment areas of rainwater. As a matter of fact,

the precious resource that it is, are among the keys to

any surface accessible to downpour is good enough

ensuring your personal, and our collective, future water

to act as the catchment basis of rainwater. Footpaths,

security.

SG

gutters, roads and rooftops are some of the effective catchments for rainwater harvesting.

S G 172

Se ad right for more.


digital

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A wards

Nomsa Bengani of NP receiving Petco award • Arthur Smith of Nampak receiving the Sapro Award

PETCO CSI Champion of the Year Award & SAPRO Best Recycled

Product of the Year Award

Nampak's assistance with the clean-up at Two Oceans Marathon • Ray Chaplin at the SA Orange River Project

S G 174


Recently two important 'green' awards were made: the PETCO CSI Champion of the Year Award

and the SAPRO Best Recycled Product of the Year Award. Both

Nampak Rigid Plastics and Plastics|SA sponsor the Orange River project (the first ever attempt to riverboard SA's longest river, the 2 300km Orange River) to raise awareness of water pollution and the need for proper disposal of litter.

of these prestigious awards involved initiatives and products

projects being their partnership with Wessa Eco

from Nampak Rigid Plastics.

program; The Orange River project; Community

schools project – PENSchools; The Trekking for Trash beach clean ups; the Two Oceans clean up; Chips to Chairs campaign and the Johannesburg zoo

T

billboard campaign – all of which were considered

Clean Up South Africa Week (16-21 September

riverboard SA's longest river, the 2 300km Orange

2013) – an initiative that encourages South Africans

River) to raise awareness of water pollution and the

to clean-up and recycle where they work, live or

need for proper disposal of litter. Schools along the

play.

way are encouraged to participate in river clean-ups

he SAPRO annual competition is hosted in

by PETCO in making the award.

collaboration with Plastics|SA and forms one

Nampak Rigid Plastics and Plastics|SA sponsor

of the highlights of the local plastic industry's

the Orange River project (the first ever attempt to

Douglas Greig, Chairman of SAPRO explained

and recycling, and learners and community leaders

that the competition, 'known as the Oscars of the

are shown how to monitor and test water quality

plastics industry, acknowledges recycled plastics

on a regular basis. Their ability to do so enables

products and encourages brand owners and

the effective management of farming activities

industrial designers to consider recycled plastics as

and public health issues, particularly along the

a material of choice'.

riverbank.

At its August Annual General Meeting, The PET

The Old Mutual Two Oceans Marathon in Cape

Recycling Company (PETCO) honoured stakeholders

Town was supplied with 136  000 250ml HDPE

and celebrated the achievements of individuals,

bottles by Nampak Liquid (a division of Nampak

companies and organisations within the PET industry

Rigid Plastics) and Plastics|SA, who employed 110

that have made extraordinary contributions to the

people to help clean up nearly 20 000kg of waste

recycling of post-consumer PET in SA.

along the route, including the Chapman's Peak leg,

The CSI Champion of the Year Award was awarded to a company that is actively and

which is a marine conservation area. In September, The South African Plastics

significantly contributing to making a difference in

Recyclers Organisation (SAPRO) presented a gold

society through relevant upliftment interventions,

award and its trophy for the Best Recycled Product

specifically aimed at communities, job creation

of 2013 to Unilever SA for its Sunlight Dishwash

through recycling and poverty alleviation goals.

Bottle. Nampak Liquid (now incorporating Nampak

According to Lisa Parkes, Marketing Manager of PETCO, the award went to Nampak 'for having succeeded

in

internalising

from recycled material supplied by Extrupet.

extending

The PET bottle composed of 50% rPET (recycled

Corporate Social Initiative (CSI) activities into

polyethylene terephthalate) has been developed in

recycling, education and awareness-raising arenas'.

stages over the period of 18 months as part of an

Nampak and its divisions have long been active

ongoing project to create a suitable market-friendly

EPR

by

Petpak) injection stretch blow mould these bottles

in the CSI enviro-arena with some of the notable

bottle with a higher rPET content.

SG

175 S G


A wards

WINNERS IN SAPRO'S BEST RECYCLED PRODUCT OF THE YEAR COMPETITION

T

he winner of the 2013 SAPRO Trophy for the Best Recycled Product is the Sunlight Dishwash Bottle from Unilever SA.

Recycled material for the Sunlight bottle is supplied by Extrupet. The bottles are injection stretch blow moulded by Nampak Petpak in Isando. 'One of the limitations to introducing recycled bottles is customer perception, because consumers are used to buying products in what they believe to be perfect bottles', explained Douglas Greig, Chairman of the SA Plastics Recyclers Organisation (SAPRO) who hosted the 4th annual gala dinner and awards ceremony. Brands such as Sunlight have a great heritage with consumers and are often seen to lead the way. If the major brands are proactive in adjusting their packaging to create a better environment, consumers often view this as a very positive step, because they have the market impact and volumes to actually make a difference. In addition, major brands have the financial muscle to influence and educate suppliers, retailers and consumers alike and there is a positive knock-on effect down the supply chain and into the home', Greig said Currently in its fourth year, this annual competition is hosted in collaboration with Plastics|SA and forms one of the highlights of the local plastic industry's Clean Up South Africa Week (16-21 September 2013) – an initiative that encourages South Africans to clean-up and recycle where they work, live or play. Explaining the purpose of the competition, Greig said the event, known as the 'Oscars of the Plastics Industry', acknowledges recycled plastics products and encourages brand owners and industrial designers to consider recycled plastics as a material of choice. 'Plastics recycling is an important part of end-of-life plastics products and SA is doing well with only mechanical recycling. This annual event is an important vehicle to educate the media, public and even the plastics industry about the magnitude of plastics recycling locally.'

This page is proudly brought to you by SAPRO

The Southern African Plastics Recyclers Organisation (SAPRO) announced the winners of this year's Best Recycled Product of the Year Award at a gala dinner held in Irene, Pretoria, recently (for an overview see page 174 for more). The SAPRO Trophy for the Best Recycled Product of 2013 went to Unilever for its Sunlight Dishwash Bottle. Sunlight Dishwash bottle by Unilever SA, contains 50% recycled content


Plastics Recycling in SA Approximately 19% of all plastics products that were manufactured during 2012 were recycled in the same period. Says Greig: 'The recycling rate is increasing very slowly – too slow to make a huge impact on the plastics waste going to landfill every year. As a result of the increasing population, urbanisation and a growing middle-class society, the tonnages going to landfill are increasing faster than the tonnages recycled.' Addressing the audience during the gala dinner, Greig stressed that recycled plastics are in huge demand in SA. 'Our recyclers cannot produce enough material to meet the demand,' he said. Sadly, however, the price converters are willing to pay for recycled material does not reflect the demand as recycled material is often still perceived as being second grade or poor quality, inconsistent and non-reliable raw material source. 'This is far removed from the truth as this competition has one again proved that recycled plastic is versatile, strong and extremely reliable.'

The Products entered A wide variety of different products with different uses and applications were entered into this year's competition. All of these products were made from recycled plastic and reflected a wide market acceptance and approval from the consumer. This competition was also well supported by brand owners, retailers, converters and the media who all encouraged innovation and improved methods of recovery and design when using plastic as the material of choice. Gold Awards went to the following: Checkers carrier bag by Tuffy Promotions – 100 % recycled content. Genius Smart Shoe Soles for smart kids by Novita Shoes – 100 % recycled content. Sunlight Dishwash bottle by Unilever SA, containing 50% recycled content, for the category percentage post-consumer recycled content.

Silver Award winners were: Plastic Droppers by Plastic Droppers – 100 % recycled content. Combination rake head by Lasher Tools – 100 % recycled content. Pallet corner block by Skyprops – mixed recycled content. Organics Recycled Range – Unilever SA (25% recycled content), in the category for products containing a percentage of post-consumer recycled content. Woolworths Earth Friendly cleaning range (30% recycled content) for the category percentage post-consumer recycled content. Lifestyle range by Eco Smart in the category Novel and Artistic Products. Furniture and Sculptures by Bongani Khumalo of Ababhali.

Judging Criteria A panel of plastics experts judged the entries based on various criteria, which included: Life expectancy of product; Sustainability and long-term demand and market acceptance for product (for instance, will it still sell in 5 years' time?); Tonnage (potential tonnages) diverted from landfills and converted into a product; Replacement of alternative materials; Technical achievements in manufacturing excellence to overcome recycled material challenges; Measures taken to ensure product consistency and customer satisfaction, despite recycled material content; Potential to create consumer awareness of plastics recycling; and The 'wow' factor. Concludes Greig: 'The products seen at this year's competition were all clearly meeting their customers' demands and are able to perform in rigorous and tough applications. These products are used because they have established themselves in their own rightful places. None of these products need any special marketing as a "recycled" product – they have their own identities.' SG

Woolworths sports 30% recycled content in their Earth Friendly cleaning range

Checkers carrier bag by Tuffy Promotions – 100% recycled content

This page is made possible with the kind assistance of Plastics|SA


P rofile

what is SAPRO ? The The SA Plastics Recycling Organisation (SAPRO) consists of companies that recycle/ reprocess plastics waste into raw materials, ready to be used again in manufacturing, called recyclate. SAPRO currently has about 40 members, all based in SA. We find out more.

S

distances, adding to the fuel costs to historical perceived value

The final product

No grading system in

place (as yet) for different quality levels of recyclate. The opportunities/solutions in the industry are: Recyclers will have to broaden their margins to enable them to invest in technology and skills to improve quality of recyclate

Green procurement from brand

owners to create a long-term demand for recyclate

Awareness of recycled content in consumer

products – by means of the SAPRO Best Recycled Product competition (see page 174) which creates awareness

APRO acts as the spokesbody for the plastics

recyclers and also provides opportunity for recyclers to talk to each other on common

challenges. It aims to have a professional recycling industry in SA that recycles waste materials into sought-after, quality input, raw materials for plastics convertors to manufacture enviro-friendly products for brand owners and consumers. What SAPRO wishes to accomplish in the market is that recyclers engage in 'good manufacturing practices' that will result in raw materials that are manufactured according to specific standards. That recycled material attains its rightful place as a raw material and is not regarded as a cheap replacement option at reduced quality.

of recycled products in everyday life

Separation at

Source – two bag systems in every home, office and suburb to make access to recyclables better and reduce contamination levels in recyclable materials. The plastics industry as a whole is currently unfortunately struggling as neither the public nor the private sector is actively supporting the industry in procuring locally. There are no drives to link jobs and job-creation with local manufacturers. We urge a policy of buying locally. There is no commitment from government or retail and brand owners to procure enough local goods, despite many SA companies cutting back production costs to compete with cheaper imports. Support by government, and specifically the DTI marketing the Manufacturing and Competitiveness Enhancement Programme (MCEP), has reduced the minimum requirements to make it easier for small and

The challenges faced in the industry include: Ensure

medium convertors and recyclers to access funding

availability of incoming raw materials – currently, there

which is a huge plus. This industry seeks to contribute

is not enough, and not enough of a good quality

more actively to the GDP and find investment if they

Municipalities to part with recyclable waste and not send it to landfills plastics recyclers

Technical skills among the

have the orders, but that is unfortunately not coming from local procurement.

Stabilise the price of electricity

Support from the plastics industry body, in the form

Stabilise the cost

of Plastics SA, is excellent as they are in full support of

– processing costs are very high

of transport – waste has to be transported for long

S G 178

is not priced according to demand, but rather according

what SAPRO is trying to achieve.

SG


179 S G


C orporate S ocial I nitiative

Nampak greens communities in Arbor Month As part of Arbor Month this year, in conjunction with Food & Trees for Africa, Nampak Liquid Cartons sponsored over 100 trees for planting during the month of September. Top & above: 37 trees were planted at Mjoji Primary School in Verulam, Ogunjini, KwaZulu-Natal. The 10 fruit and 27 indigenous trees were planted on the school grounds and around the sports field.

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'S

pring is a perfect time to reflect on the miracle that every tree represents a symbol of life,' said Jeunesse Park, founder of

Food & Trees For Africa (FTFA) – an NGO specialising

in tree planting as a means of mitigating the effects of climate change and greening previously disadvantaged local communities. Arbor Month, in September, is aimed at reminding

'The advantage of using paper for packaging is that it is a truly infinite renewable resource – for every three trees that are felled to manufacture cartons, another four are planted to replace them,' says Nampak.

South Africans of the positive contribution trees make in all our lives, towards sustainability,

grounds and around the sports field.

improved environments and community health. This

'Thank you so much for these trees in celebration

year's Arbor Month theme of 'Forests are our Future',

of Arbor Month,' said Mr S W Skhakhane, Principal

reflected the fact that all kinds of tree plantings,

of Mjoji School. 'We are thrilled to plant these trees

whether commercial forests, urban forests, trees

and use them to help to make our area greener and

in schools or along streets, are extremely valuable.

more pleasant. As time goes by they will benefit the

For Nampak Liquid Cartons (formerly known as

community as a whole.'

Elopak SA) the synergy with trees is obvious. Besides

Terry van der Walt, Vasen Pillay (Safety, Health,

the nutritional, enviro- and psychological benefits

Environment, Risk and Quality Manager at Nampak

that these trees add to communities, they also

Liquid Cartons), Ms M G Msomi (Mjoji Primary School

represent the origins of the paper used to produce

educator) and Sifiso Mbatha (FTFA Representative)

Nampak's Conipak and Pure-pak liquid fibre-board

fulfilled the ceremonial role of planting the first

cartons, for the packing of both beverages and dry

tree. This was accompanied by the reading of

goods.

poems and rhymes by the school's learners.

The advantage of using paper for packaging is

Monday, 16 September, the beginning of this

that it is a truly infinite renewable resource. In fact

year's National Clean-up and Recycle Week, marked

for every three trees that are felled to manufacture

the second Arbor Month tree planting event by

cartons, another four are planted to replace them,

Nampak Liquid Cartons. This time 35 trees were

says Nampak.

planted at the Holy Spirit Environmental Project – a

As part of Arbor Month this year, in conjunction with Food & Trees for Africa, Nampak Liquid Cartons sponsored over 100 trees for planting. According to Terry van der Walt, the Marketing

church group based in Kwazakhele, Port Elizabeth in the Eastern Cape. Terry

van

der

Walt,

Vidah

Mayana

(Vice

Chairperson of the Holy Spirit Environmental Project)

Manager of the Nampak Rigid Plastics, of which

and Chris Wild (FTFA Ecopreneur) planted the first

Nampak Liquid Cartons is a division, the company's

tree. To the joy of all, Bishop Bethlehem Nopece of

partnership with FTFA is an opportunity to give back

Port Elizabeth made a surprise appearance at the

to the community, while making a positive difference

event. Amid traditional dancing and enviro-poem

to the greening challenge. To this end, Nampak

and story-telling, Chris Wild treated the volunteers

Liquid Cartons check that all their paperboard

to a demonstration on how to plant and care for

supplies are responsibly sourced from sustainable

the trees properly. FTFA will monitor and revisit the

forests. In most cases, Forestry Stewardship Council

site, ensuring that the trees will grow to be strong

(FSC) Chain of Custody Certification and similar

and to the benefit of the whole local Kwazakhele

traceability initiatives are the benchmark. As a

community.

result, they can track their cartons to the plantations where the fibre-board originated. Following on from the planting of 67 trees

A further Nampak Liquid Cartons sponsored event will be announced soon for the planting of the remaining 35 trees.

last year, Nampak Liquid Cartons kicked off their

Nampak Liquid Cartons partnership with Food

sponsorship this year on 2 September, with the

& Trees for Africa is the company's way of making

planting of 37 trees at Mjoji Primary School in

sure that the important messages associated with

Verulam, Ogunjini, KwaZulu-Natal. The 10 fruit and

Arbor Month remain relevant and top-of-mind

27 indigenous trees were planted on the school

throughout the year.

SG

181 S G


Packaging that doesn’t milk nature

With improved functionality, strength, premium image and a wide range of options, our worldclass Pure-Pak cartons are first choice for leading brands such as Spar. Consumers always reach for our packs because they are recyclable, convenient, lightweight and unlike anything else on-shelf. Spar’s one and two litre Pure-Pak milk cartons will also soon be carrying the internationally sought after mark of responsible forestry: the Forest Stewardship Council® (FSC) certification, indicating that the material used to manufacture the cartons is compliant with the highest social and environmental standards as it is made from FSC certified forests, recycled material or other controlled sources. Our carton’s unique additional Elo-curve panel and large printable surface area allows for quality branding. Coupled with cutting-edge carton design, carton-filling machine installation, service and ongoing technical advice, we ensure that your packaging remains a market leader without “milking” nature.

from

S G 182

For the most outstanding packaging, contact us on +27 (0)11 249 5200 www.nampak.com


E nvironment

'Plastics don't litter, people do' 183 S G


C

lean-ups took place on most of SA's beaches recently where gloves, refuse bags and data sheets were handed out to volunteers upon their

arrival. 'From Kosi Bay on the East Coast to Alexander Bay on the West coast, communities and helpers from every age showed up to remove litter from the beaches,' says John Kieser, Sustainability Manager of Plastics|SA and National Co-ordinator for the ICC. Various diving clubs took the initiative to co-ordinate underwater cleanups in many of our country's harbours,

'The hard work begins after the annual cleanups, as we now have to go through all the bags and analyse all the data before sending off our results to Ocean Conservancy International,' says John Kieser, Sustainability Manager of Plastics|SA and National Co-ordinator for the ICC.

while a beach cleanup also took place on Robben Island. KwaZulu-Natal's beach cleanups attracted more than

Many schools around the country also co-ordinated

6 000 volunteers on the day, with 1 600 kids and youth

cleanups during the week due to the fact that the holidays

attending a beach cleanup in the Durban Mangroves.

started then and pupils wanted to do their bit for ocean

The first micro-material cleanup for manmade material

health. Further inland, streams and rivers such as the

smaller than 10mm, such as plastic pellets, also took

Jukskei River in Johannesburg also received attention as

place at Yzerfontein on the day.

businesses and corporates encouraged their personnel

'The cleanup couldn't have taken place at a better

to help clean the environment as part of Clean-Up and

time, as the beaches were strewn with litter on Saturday

Recycle Week (16-21 September 2013),which culminated

morning after the rains the week before,' says Kieser.

in National Recycling Day (Friday, 20 September) and the

The heavy rains that fell over the Western Cape this past

International Coastal Clean Up Day.

winter caused much of the litter to be washed down the

We are not yet in a position to report exact figures

rivers from the areas where there are little or no proper

about how many volunteers participated or the amount

waste management systems. It took several thousand

of litter that was removed from beaches and water

volunteers two hours to remove the 8 500 bags filled

sources, as the collection and compilation of raw data

every kind of rubbish – ranging from various kinds of

obtained from the clean-ups can only begin after the

packaging waste such as food wrappers, glass bottles,

annual clean-up.

cans and plastic tops, to q-tips, cigarette butts, pieces of clothing and even appliances.

'The hard work begins after the annual cleanups, as we now have to go through all the bags and analyse

'We were a bit worried about weather predictions

all the data before sending off our results to Ocean

that heavy rains and showers could derail our plans, but

Conservancy International. Our detailed report should

were blessed with good weather on the day that made it

be ready by November, when the stats are used

possible for thousands of South Africans to flock to our

to publish the world's only item-by-item, location-by-

beaches,' Kieser says.

location snapshot of marine debris in an annual report

According to Kieser, it is vitally important for us to

and gives a comprehensive overview of marine debris to

remove rubbish from the beaches as quickly as possible

helps to educate government, scientists and the public

because marine animals such as sea turtles, seabirds,

around the world,' Kieser says.

and marine mammals are particularly vulnerable to litter

'We are encouraged by the support and active

on the beaches. 'These animals ingest and get entangled

participation of all members of the National Recycling

in marine debris, which leads to a loss of nutrition,

Forum, which includes the glass, can, oil and e-waste

internal injury, intestinal blockage, starvation, and even

industries, as well as the good turnout of volunteers we

death', he explained.

saw on Saturday. This shows that individuals are starting

South Africans once again showed their commitment to the environment recently by participating in the 28th International Coastal Clean-up that took place at beaches around the country.

S G 184


to take responsibility for keeping our environment clean

researchers to better understand and evaluate the

and litter-free. However, the challenges still exist to

scope, origins and impact of and solutions to marine

educate people about proper disposal strategies and

litter;

the importance of recycling their litter. We will continue

Promoting comprehensive science-based policies and

to spread the message that "Plastics don't litter, people

enforcement of existing laws to prevent marine litter;

do". It is only through an ongoing, collective effort that

Spreading knowledge regarding eco-efficient waste

we will be able to turn the tide on marine litter.

management systems and practices, particularly in

'The ocean supplies much of the air we breathe, the

communities and countries that border our oceans

food we eat and the water we drink. That means no

and watersheds;

matter where you live, your life depends on the ocean. If

Enhancing opportunities to recover plastics products

our ocean isn't healthy, neither are we,' Steyn explains.

for recycling and energy recovery; and Stewarding the transport and distribution of plastic

Marine debris

resin pellets and products from supplier to customer

Marine debris (litter) is a major problem along shorelines, in coastal waters, estuaries and oceans throughout the world. Marine debris is any man-made, solid material

to prevent product loss and encouraging customers to do the same.

that enters our waterways either directly or indirectly.

Berg2Beach

Marine debris enters our oceans and coasts from a

Plastics|SA has initiated a project which focuses on litter

number of land and ocean-based sources. More people

and recreational activities on inland dams and rivers

relocate to our coastline each year and the production of

(which eventually lead to the sea). A young learner

waste and the potential for marine debris continues to

in the KwaZulu-Natal area has taken it upon herself

increase. We need to control the disposal of waste more

to monitor the rivers and dams in the Drakensberg

efficiently and avoid it finding its way into our rivers,

Mountains which lead to the sea and supply the

streams and oceans.

statistics and photographs to Plastics|SA on a regular

What are the causes and sources of marine debris, and most importantly, what are the solutions?

basis. In turn, they will sponsor two kayaks for her and her dad to collect this information. She will become a

Marine debris is not only an eyesore, it is also harmful

spokesperson, addressing and encouraging the youth

to ocean ecosystems, wildlife and humans. Marine

in the area to change their habits and stop littering.

debris is detrimental to coral reefs and bottom-dwelling

This will also highlight the amount of litter created

species and are often the cause of the entanglement,

by recreational activities on the rivers and dams and

drowning or starvation of ocean wildlife. Some species

educate the public on the sensitivity of the environment.

ingest marine debris, potentially causing choking or

The project will be co-ordinated in partnership with

starvation. Medical waste (such as syringes) often

the KwaZulu-Natal Wildlife and the Eco Care Trust – an

contains harmful bacteria and pathogens that pose a

association for fisherman.

hazard to beachgoers. Marine debris also often gets entangled on boat motors and can clog seawater intakes. Dirty beaches discourage tourism and money is wasted on cleanup efforts. 'As part of their overarching contribution to providing sustainable

solutions,

representatives

of

plastics

organisations from around the globe have all signed a Global Declaration for Solutions on Marine Litter,' Kieser says. The declaration, announced at the 5th International Marine Debris Conference in Honolulu, describes steps that the industries will take and suggests approaches and platforms for global co-operation and future partnerships.

Operation Clean Sweep Most plastic consumer products are made from small plastic pellets the size of a small sunflower seed (without the shell). Plastic makers have developed an innovative program called Operation Clean Sweep to help keep these pellets where they belong – in factories, trucks and railcars and out of the natural environment. The campaign's goal is to help every plastic resin handling operation implement good housekeeping and pellet containment practices to work towards achieving zero pellet loss.

SG

The worldwide plastics associations have committed themselves to contributing to solutions by working in

Visit www.plasticsinfo.co.za, www.cleanup-sa.co.za,

public-private partnerships aimed at preventing marine

www.recyclingday-sa.co.za or www.mywaste.co.za.

debris. They have committed to:

Download the press release on Marine Litter Declaration

Working with the scientific community and

– http://www.plasticsinfo.co.za/images/2268.pdf

185 S G


R eport

zero plastic in la S G 186


Plastics|SA, the umbrella body representing the local plastics industry – including polymer producers and importers, converters, machine suppliers and recyclers – has just released the latest plastics recycling figures for 2012.

had entered the recycling industry during the past year. 'We have seen that many waste management companies and collectors have streamlined their operations by vertically integrating with granulators and pelletising extruders, with, or without wash lines,' Hanekom says.

Tonnages recycled & recovered 2012 saw a 9.3% increase (268  548 tons) in the amount of plastic recycled, while the amount of virgin polymer used also grew by 5.4% (1  370 kilotons) in the same period. Similarly, the amount of plastics that were exported also increased (14

'T

he plastics chain in SA employs over 60 000 people and is defined as a priority sector by government,' says Anton Hanekom,

Executive Director of Plastics|SA. 'The plastics

industry has a combined turnover of approximately R50bn and a consumption rate of close to 1.370m tons per annum. It therefore stands to reason that a major focus for us is ensuring that plastics are properly disposed of and recycled and that a viable recycling sector is established and supported,' Hanekom explains. Over the last five years, Plastics|SA has been

744 tons) during this year. 'We are very excited and motivated by these figures, as they show that the local plastics industry is robust and healthy despite worldwide economic pressures,' Hanekom says. 'However, even more encouraging and worth highlighting is the fact that the total tonnage of plastics waste diverted from landfills equates to 20.7% of all plastics manufactured in 2012, and that the local recycling rate was 19.6% compared to international standards of 26.3%.'

carefully measuring the recycling rate of plastics in

Packaging

SA. Although the last comprehensive and complete

In an effort to address the problem of plastics

survey was done for 2009, the association has been

packaging contributing to visible litter, the SA

releasing annual updates to measure the trends in

plastics industry participated with other packaging

recycling.

role-players in submitting the Paper and Packaging Industry Waste Management Plan to the Department

The size of the local plastic recycling industry in SA

of Environmental Affairs in 2011. This plan aimed at reducing the plastic waste in the environment. Although the plan is not yet approved, industry is implementing its elements and it is starting to bear

According to the latest survey, SA had more than

fruit, as we were able to divert a total of 216 932

210 active plastic recyclers in operation during

tons of plastics packaging waste from landfill in

2012. Some 19 recyclers who were recorded in 2011

2012,' Hanekom says.

were no longer operational, while 32 new recyclers

In total, 204 400 tons of packaging were recycled

andfills a reality ? 187 S G


Around 44 100 informal jobs were created during 2012 in the collection of recycling

in 2012, (an 8.5% increase from the previous year),

contract workers who were involved in full-time

while the export of plastics packaging waste also

sorting of incoming materials for the recyclers,

increased by more than 51% (from 8 294 tons in

usually on site. These workers are paid for their

2011 to 12 532 tons in 2012).

output rather than for the time spent on the job.

Despite these good recovery rates, the total amount of plastics packaging in the waste stream is still increasing. With Separation at Source projects developing in the major metropolitan areas, this target can be reached when domestic solid waste is accessed. If one million families each add one 1l yogurt tub, for example, every second week to their recyclable waste, the plastics packaging in the waste stream will start decreasing,' Hanekom says.

When comparing a plastics recycling operation with other plastics converting operations that do a similar tonnage per annum, the recent survey has shown that recyclers have higher operating costs with regards to water and electricity, wages, transport, and repairs and maintenance on plants and equipment. 'The actual operating costs of the 36 recyclers

Employment

surveyed that granulate, wash and pelletise were

It is estimated that 44  100 informal jobs were

taken into account to calculate their operating costs

created during 2012 in the collection of recycling.

for 2012. When compared to 2011, total operating

'These collectors collect all materials and are not

costs increased by 36.5%,' Hanekom says.

only working with plastics,' Hanekom explains. It

Although the cost of electricity increased

is estimated that each of these collectors handle

dramatically in the last 24 months, the portion of

on average 60kg of plastics waste per day, with

the overall operation costs stayed more or less the

approximately 200 good collection days per annum.

same thanks to considerable measures that were

Formal

employment

in

plastics

recycling,

however, shrank to 5 047 formal jobs in 2012 (a 0.3% drop since 2011). Of these, only 8.4% were

S G 188

Processing costs

taken by recyclers to contain the energy costs in their factories.


Challenges facing the plastic recycling industry

Plastics Recycling and Recovery rates for 2009-2012

The European plastics industry stipulates that the maximum economic recycling rate for packaging is about 35%. According to Hanekom, SA would be able to reach a 40% recycling rate with the following in place: Access to the solid waste stream is essential. Separation at source to be implemented in all the larger metropolitan areas. Simple, straight-forward and consistent cost of energy to allow for forward planning of cost-of-sales. Realistic selling prices of recyclate (raw material sent to and processed in a waste recycling plant or materials recovery facility) linked to demand and quality of material. Recycled content to be specified by brand owners. Development of the collection of recyclable waste in outlying areas Consolidation of all the different but similar organisations. 'The plastics industry will have to work together as one if it is to convince government, retail and the public that we mean business with recycling and are professional and credible in what we recycle. We are far ahead of Europe with the recycling of thin film and are developing a stronger, non-packaging recycling industry for the polyolefins,' Hanekom says. However, one major area of concern for all recyclers is the availability of incoming recyclable waste. 'Truckloads of baled material are shipped outside the country instead of us keeping our waste in our own country. This puts the jobs of waste pickers at ground level at risk, and they are left with no alternative but to consider alternative income-generating activities such as fruit picking and fishing – especially in the Western Cape, while larger collectors have to look for markets

new entrants are joining the industry on a monthly basis. However, it is only the long-standing recyclers that have the tenacity and stamina to continue year in and year out, with small increases in efficiencies, that grow the recycling tonnages in small increments. 'We are seeing an increasing amount of support for recycled plastic from retail and brand owners who are recognising the importance of including and using recycled content in their products. As a result they are now instructing their plastics product manufacturers to source recyclate,' Hanekom says, calling on plastics recyclers to start marketing themselves and their products in order to sell their products at market-related prices. 'Recyclers are used to customers contacting them for material at a specific price. They are not used to hard-selling their products or its advantages and this will need to change if they are to make the most of the positive environment that is encouraging more players to enter the market,' he says. Alternative recycling methods, such as 'creating energy from waste' and liquid fuels are currently being

investigated

for

the

development

of

elsewhere,' he says.

operational plants. 'Exciting and viable initiatives

Zero plastic in landfills a reality?

rates to levels where zero plastic waste to landfill

The SA plastics recycling industry is growing and

Visit www.plasticsinfo.co.za

such as these will help us to grow the recycling can become a reality.'

SG

189 S G


C onservation N ews

UWC scientists

discover new pesticide from fynbos

A group of scientists at the University of the Western Cape (UWC), led by Associate Professor Jeremy Klaasen of the Department of Medical Biosciences, have been researching the potential pharmaceutical uses and green economy commercial applications of kraalbos for a number of years. Some promising discoveries have already been made regarding its potential agricultural uses. For centuries, the Khoisan people used kraalbos (Galenia africana) to treat various diseases and conditions, including toothache, skin ailments, inflammation, dandruff and venereal diseases. Now Prof Klaasen and his team have developed a product derived from kraalbos that can reverse the resistance of crop pathogens when applied in combination with conventional pesticides. 'This is an important discovery, as resistance to pesticides tends to develop after prolonged and extensive periods of use, resulting in the spreading of pesticide-resistant superbugs,' said Prof Klaasen, who holds an MSc (Microbiology) from UWC as well as a PhD (Plant Pathology) from Pennsylvania State University. The iBATECH product, which has been patented by UWC, is registered for use on tunnel tomatoes. UWC is involved in discussions with agrochemical companies on the possibility of licensing the pesticide, and registering the product for use in SA and internationally. The project was funded by the Technology Innovation Agency, an initiative of the Department of Science and Technology.

S G 190

Greenpeace activists jailed

Last edition in Simply Green, we included a news item on 'Shell vs the Arctic'. At the time, the Greenpeace ship Arctic Sunrise was being forced out of Russian Arctic waters by the Russian Coast Guard because 'they didn't want us bearing witness and taking action against the reckless oil companies racing to drill there', says Greenpeace. On going live with Simply Green, Issue 6, Avaaz has had over 1 million supporters against the jailing of 30 Greenpeace activists – some of which are in solitary confinement and are now facing 15 years in prison on charges of hooliganism. Their crime? Hanging a banner on a Russian oil rig to protest dangerous deepwater drilling in one of the earth’s most beautiful and fragile places. Avaaz says it will project the jailed crews faces in key public places to keep this story at the top of the news in a bid to have them released.

The International Panel on Climate Change's (IPCC) 5 th Assessment Report

IPCC has recently released its 5th Assessment Report dealing with the science behind climate change (AR5). Melita Steele, climate

and energy campaigner for Greenpeace Africa had this to say: 'The AR5 Report confirms what we already know about climate change, and makes it clear that it is now virtually certain (95% or more) that human activities have warmed the global climate system. The decade of the 2000s has been the warmest in the instrumental record and there are alarming signs of accelerating impacts accompanying the long-term warming trend. The scenario that keeps warming below 2°C implies that fossil fuel emissions will need to stop growing before 2020 and reach zero by around 2070. The longer we keep on burning fossil fuels and clearing forests, the worse our chances of facing climate chaos become.' Download the Report here – http://www.climatechange2013.org/ images/uploads/WGIAR5_WGI-12Doc2b_FinalDraft_All.pdf


Cape Town Shark Spotters go green

The City’s Environmental Resource Management Department is one of the implementing departments of the Travel SMART programme which focuses on promoting sustainable transport. In keeping with the objectives of smart driving, the electric scooter, which was used during phase one of the City’s Electricity Savings Campaign, was donated to the Shark Spotters. 'We will be using the scooter to move quickly around between our spotting sites, and it will be especially useful to help us beat the main road traffic in the summer holidays. At the same time we will be “green ambassadors”, showing other road users in the area the importance of SMART travel and enviro-responsible driving habits. Thank you City of Cape Town for your generosity,' said a Spotter.

Sonar surveys & cetacean stranding confirmed

The deaths of over 100 melon-headed whales, which stranded on the shores of a lagoon in northwest Madagascar in 2008, were likely primarily triggered by a form of sonar being deployed by an ExxonMobil survey vessel, according to a scientific review panel. This is the first known marine mammal mass stranding event to be closely associated with what are known as high-frequency mapping sonar systems; but it is merely the latest in a long line of incidents in which industrial noise in the ocean has been implicated in deaths and injuries to marine mammals, and specifically cetaceans. One area of particular focus is the use of active sonar by the US and other navies. In 2004, the Scientific Committee of the International Whaling Commission concluded that 'there is now compelling evidence implicating military sonar has a direct impact on beaked whales.' In 2001, the US Navy acknowledged that its active sonar played a role in the stranding deaths of 14 beaked whales, two minke whales, and a dolphin in the Bahamas in 2000. Necropsies of the beaked whales revealed that the animals had suffered acoustic trauma resulting in hemorrhaging around the brain, in the inner ears, and in the acoustic fats located in the head that are involved in sound transmission. Instruments like the 12kHz, multi-beam echosounder system, used in underwater mapping, discharge a high-frequency which have also been said to disturb marine life, especially cetaceans. Howard Rosenbaum, director of the Ocean Giants program for the Wildlife Conservation Society, said in a statement: 'We now hope that these results will be used by industry, regulatory authorities, and others to minimize risks and to better protect marine life, especially marine mammal species that are particularly sensitive to increasing ocean noise from human activities.'

191 S G


E ditor ' s C hoice

Shelf Saving the White Lions Linda Tucker North Atlantic Books • 978 1 5839 4605 3 Subtitled 'One Woman's Battle for Africa's Most Sacred Animal', this a personal memoir focusing on Tucker's dedication to saving Africa's white lions – considered by some to be emblematic and even actual representations of the very spirit of wild Africa – and the battles, especially with the trophy-hunted industry, to rescue and protect these rare and exquisite creatures. To some, lions, white or otherwise, are lions – and no friend to man. To others, obviously including Tucker but many besides her, mankind's old rivalry with lions is perhaps deeply embedded in both species' DNA, but that doesn't change the current situation where lions in the wild – or even in captivity – are diminishing in numbers as human encroachments, even into previously inhospitable locations, continues unabated. Like so many other creatures, lions are losing their habitat to human development and needs. Sooner or later, under such relentless pressure, species must die out or become relics in zoos or museums. This is why some biologists and archeologists believe we are now in this planet's sixth great extinction – one brought about largely by human activity and actions. Tucker's passion and commitment are admirable; and her story is a compelling read of her struggles, hopes, fears and dreams for the white lions to which she has dedicated her life. Tucker's journey with the white lions began with an extraordinary night time experience with a pride of lions in the Timbavati bushveld in which it seemed likely that she and the other people with her would likely be a feast for the predators before the night was out. But, almost miraculously, a local sangoma, Maria Khosa, appeared out of the dark, saving Tucker and her party by somehow calming the lions – and setting Tucker on a new direction, utterly different from her high-powered career in Europe. Khosa subsequently revealed to Tucker that her destiny was to save, care for and protect the white lions, the resurgence of whose numbers, much like the storied White Buffalo Calf of the native America tradition, was believed to be an indicator of a great change coming to Africa, and the world. The question was, would the change be the effective disappearance of this magnificent creature from the plains of Africa, or its return in greater numbers. Tucker has fought for the latter, launching an international campaign to raise awareness about them – and to combat what she sees as the evil of 'canned lion hunting' and trophy hunting of lions. If you are at all moved by these creatures; if ever you have given thought to how they can remain free in the wild where they belong, then this is the book for you.

Kalahari Dream

Chris Mercer & Beverley Pervan

Self published • 978 1 4664 2666 5

This book is part of a new phenomenon – video books. Written to be read, at least in part, online, the book moves seamlessly from content to video and other internet content, when read online. If read in hardcopy, there are many video links mentioned in its appendix. Touted as a 'story of the indomitable spirit of living beings', it tells stories straight from the African bush, sometimes harsh, sometimes tender, always powerful. It's a great read for anyone interested in Africa and its creatures but, when all is said and done, it is also a heartfelt plea from two people who really care for humane and compassionate conservation policies. Let us all hope – for our sake, and that of the animals and the planet – that what these two authors have brought us is not the last echoes of a dying Africa, losing its creatures to ill-considered human interventions and expansion. S G 192


BushVet

Clay Wilson with Tony Park

Umuzi • 978 1 4152 0178 7

Johannesburg-born Clay Wilson works, against the odds as often as not, in the Chobe National Park as a wildlife veterinarian. With Tony Park, who has many years in journalism, PR and related fields, he has written a book about what it takes to be a wildlife vet in the Africa of today. There are adventures and amazing moments. There is also heartbreak and defeat. Mostly, there is the unequal struggle against the relentless rising tide of poaching which is sweeping through Africa, affecting not just beleaguered rhino populations, but increasingly elephant, lions and many other species – some killed for trophies, horns, tusks and hides, but others as bushmeat. There is a stand-off between competing and apparently irreconcilable forces – the need for development in a developing country where many people still live in abject poverty, versus the need to protect and conserve our dwindling wild places and the creatures which live in them. Like others before him and alongside him, Wilson attempts to make the animals and their care his priority, making powerful enemies in the process. If you live in Africa, care about animals and want to see a world in which all of its creatures have a place of their own, this is a book to read and cherish. Without people like these authors – and some of the others mentioned on these pages – we will soon be living, if that's still possible, in a world denuded of our collective natural heritage. It will be a much emptier, sadder and possibly, in the end, unsustainable world, if just left to uncaring humans. Some of our greatest treasures are not to be found locked away in vaults, but are embodied in people such as these – they are not just fighting for the animals; they are fighting for all of life, ironically, including the lives of people who have yet to understand the importance of the creatures they seem determined to wipe out for short-term gain.

The White Rhino Saga Ian Player Jonathan Ball • 978 1 8684 2596 9 This a reprint of a 40-year-old book – but it's more timely now than ever, with a great resurgence of recent times in the massive and organised poaching of rhinos. It does have a 'missing chapter' never before published, so even those who've read the book will have something new too look forward to. Player is arguably among our most respected and is the longest-standing conservationists, personally responsible for the conscientising of generations of youngsters into the importance of the living biospheres that make our natural world – and, of course, the creatures which live in them. For those who have never read Player's story of those 'early years' in conservation will be fascinated with this retelling – and perhaps re-inspired by the need to keep some wilderness areas alive, not least for the balancing and healing they bring to the humans who experience them. Definitely a book for your shelves, if you don't have it already – and if you do, buy a copy and give it to someone you know who may find in these pages the incentive to become active in taking Player's message to another generation.

King

Gareth Crocker

Penguin Fiction • 978 0 1435 3842 4

Being a fact-based publication, we seldom review novels, for obvious reasons. However, this one has made it into our review list because it deals with the story of a man who has lost himself after losing his wife. He finds himself again when his veterinarian sister convinces him to help her out at her animal shelter. It is working with the animals and a rescued rare white lion in particular, which brings him back out into the world as a positive force in trying to protect the white lions in particular and animals under threat in general. A worthy read. 193 S G


Tech

Galaxy Gear

Designing the story of your life Samsung Electronics has introduced the GALAXY Note 3, the latest update to the Note product line. The new Note 3 simplifies daily tasks and infuses innovative features that help consumers 'tell the story of their lives'. The Note 3 delivers a larger and better screen for the best viewing experience and more powerful multitasking, and introduces significant S Pen improvements that make everyday life easier and faster. We take a look.

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Introducing Samsung GALAXY Note 3

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The Galaxy Note 3 Available in jet black, classic white and blush pink (pictured)

Click S Pen

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'W

e introduced the original GALAXY Note in 2011

communication driver between the phone and the user

and launched a whole new smart device

by creating essential input and control features. It plays

category. The undeniable success of the GALAXY

an integral role in how users interface with the device,

Note strengthened our conviction that consumers want

making all daily routines easier.

higher quality features for smart devices and they want

A simple click of the S Pen button while hovering over

those new features to make their lives better,' said Craige

the screen introduces users to Air Command, a palette of

Fleischer, Director of Mobile Communications of Samsung

five powerful features that truly make tasks easier and

Electronics SA, at the Note 3's launch event for Africa,

faster. With the Air Command feature, there is no need

held in Cape Town recently. The Note 3 is a powerful,

to toggle between screens, memorise commands or look

original approach that enables users to 'tell the stories

up different menus.

of their lives through dynamic and seamless expressions of their passions across work, play and life experiences'.

The Air Command

With a simple click of the S Pen button, users can unlock

feature provides

opportunities for self-expression, features that, says

access to the

Samsung, 'transform everyday activities into extraordinary

following key functions:

events and access to new experiences delivered to them on Note 3's larger screen'. The Note 3 comes with a wider (5.7") full HD

and automatically execute a function or convert that

Super AMOLED display, yet slimmer (8.3mm) and lighter

handwritten information into formatted content. Action

(168g) hardware design, and more powerful and longer

Memo can instantly initiate a call, add to contacts, look

lasting (3 200mAh) battery. Also, equipped with a 13MP

up an address on a map, search the web, save a task to

rear camera with Smart Stabilisation and high CRI LED

a to-do list, and more.

flash, Samsung GALAXY Note 3 enables users to crisply

Scrapbook enables users to organise or track down

capture every visual story in their lives, even in low-light

content and information from various sources including

and active situations. The Note 3 offers the latest LTE

the web, YouTube and Gallery in one place so that users

technologies – CAT4 Carrier Aggregation and supports the

can easily look back at collected content all at once. When

greatest number of multiple frequencies. Incorporating

consumers save content for future use, Scrapbook also

the industry's largest memory of 3GB RAM, the Note 3 also

collects source material or URLs allowing them to easily

provides faster and more powerful performance.

refer back to the original source.

Balancing strength & artistic design

image of the current page on the device and allows users

In addition to meaningful technological advancements, the

to write comments or additional information onto the

Note 3 delivers a new premium look and feel. Expanding

captured image.

The Screen Write feature captures the full screen

on the modern Samsung GALAXY design approach, the

S Finder allows users to expansively search for

Note 3 adds a soft and textured-touch back cover with

content on their device regardless of the type. By

leather-like feel and delicate stitching. It also features a

putting in keywords or filters such as date, location,

serration pattern on the side of the device that 'evokes

and content type, users can search related documents,

a connection to the timeless and enduring strengths of

events, communication threads, and even the Help

classic notebooks and planners'. The Note 3 is available

page – all in one place. In addition, users can also

in jet black, classic white and blush pink. In order to

search for hand-written content in their Notes and memo

encourage its customers to express their personality and

applications, as well as symbols and formulas.

taste, Samsung will also offer exchangeable back covers in dozens of additional colours.

The Click S Pen

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Action Memo allows users to handwrite a note,

Pen Window allows users to use the S Pen not only for drawing sketches or writing notes, but now also for opening a small application window for a true multitasking experience. Simply by drawing a window

The new S Pen reinvents and modernises the classic

of any size, anywhere on the screen, users can easily

note-taking experience by providing the ability to

and quickly open another application window such as

accomplish everyday tasks with just one click. The

YouTube, calculator or Browser without pausing current

advanced S Pen is designed to be fully functional as a

activity on the screen.


The Galaxy Note 3 boasts a larger screen, and much more

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'With the S Pen button, users unlock opportunities for self-expression, features that transform everyday activities into extraordinary events and access to new experiences delivered to them on Note 3's larger screen.'

Samsung GALAXY Note 3 presents Dreams, a digital short film

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For more advanced note-taking, the new S Note presents a comprehensive solution that enables consumers to easily write, organise, edit and browse notes with a user-friendly interface. With Easy Chart, hand-drawn visualisations of data can be instantly transformed into more formal charts and graphs. The new S Note can also be synced with Evernote or a Samsung account and be enabled for accessing and viewing from different devices. Furthermore, when a user wants only a certain part of an image to be taken from the web or Note 3 content, the advanced new Easy Clip feature allows them to roughly draw around the desired image and then it converts that content into a more precisely cropped image.

An enriched viewing experience

new Samsung GALAXY Note 10.1 Samsung Electronics has recently unveiled the GALAXY Note 10.1, 2014 Edition, an original approach to balancing productivity, powerful content creation and consumption in one portable tablet device. Equipped with WQXGA Super clear LCD (2560x1600) resolution in a stunning 10-inch display, 1.9GHz Octa Core processor (for 3G/WiFi only version) and 3GB RAM, the GALAXY Note 10.1 (2014 Edition) demonstrates Samsung’s innovation leadership by delivering ultimate productivity capabilities while remaining extremely thin and light.

The Samsung Note 3 delivers a larger screen and the increased size is matched with powerful improvements that allow users to fully utilise the additional screen space.

five devices alongside each other to create a 'big screen'

The 5.7" full HD Super AMOLED screen provides a stunning

viewing experience.

and defined video viewing experience for watching full HD content, distinct clarity for reading and an elegant canvas for content creation.

Samsung Find My Mobile The Note 3 is equipped with an improved Find My Mobile

My Magazine provides a personalised news, social media,

feature that allows users to disable the phone when it is

entertainment and in-the-moment content experience.

stolen or lost. With the enhanced user authentication,

Developed through a partnership with Flipboard, it offers

the technology prevents stolen mobile phones from being

an integrated content consuming experience in a modern

reset to factory settings, and allows users to remotely track

and dynamic magazine-style layout.

or erase the data from their lost or stolen mobile phones.

The Note 3 enables enhanced multitasking capabilities that allow users to fully utilise the larger screen.

Gear – The smart companion Simultaneously announced with the Note

With the new Multi Window, users can toggle seamlessly

3, the GALAXY Gear will notify users and

between applications without closing the window or

give them quick previews of incoming

opening a new page, allowing for enhanced productivity

texts, emails and more coming from the

and collaboration across programs. Consumers can also

Note 3. It will provide a range of other

run one application in two windows at the same time. For

valuable features and commands that

instance, users can read the news in one browser while

extend the Note 3 experience. When an

conducting a web search in another, or send an instant

incoming message requires more than a

message through ChatON to a friend while reading a

quick glance, users can simply pick up their

message from another friend. In addition, using Drag and Drop mode within the new

Samsung GALAXY devices and the Smart Relay feature will instantly reveal the full content on the screen.

Multi Window, users can easily drag and drop content such

'Together, the Note 3 and GALAXY Gear extend Samsung's

as a text or image from one window to the other in an

efforts to provide users with the opportunity to design their

instant.

lives, to express their passions and to make everyday life

An improvement to Group Play, video sharing, is now available. Originally introduced along with the GALAXY S4, Group Play allows users to play the same music, to play games together, and to share documents. It now enables

more easy and enjoyable,' said George Ferreira, VP and COO of Samsung Electronics Africa.

The Note 3 is available in 32GB internal storage along with an additional microSD card slot. S G

consumers to share videos and play content together with their friends simultaneously. Users can also connect up to

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Visit www.samsung.com


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Introducing Samsung GALAXY Note 10.1

The large, bright and crystal clear screen delivers four times the pixel density of the original GALAXY Note 10.1, providing a premium content viewing experience. The GALAXY Gear will notify users and give them quick previews of incoming texts, emails and more coming from the Note 3. It will provide a range of other valuable features and commands that extend the Note 3 experience.

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Note 3 with view cover

Samsung GALAXY Note 3 + Gear: Official First Hands-on

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Simply Green Issue 6, 2013