OECD report on “Investing in Climate, Investing in Growth” presented at UCT

Date: 24 July 2017 – 5:00pm to 7:00pm Venue: Snape, TS2B | University of Cape Town | Upper Campus What are the growth and structural implications of the transition to a low-emission and climate-resilient economy? How can governments create conditions to drive such a transition, and how can they ensure that climate-friendly growth policies provide a major boost to short-term growth while increasing longer-term resilience? What development pathways will get us to the Paris Agreement outcomes? How do investment flows, in particular, investment… Read moreOECD report on “Investing in Climate, Investing in Growth” presented at UCT

South Africa, the G20 and Climate Change: from Brown to Green?

The G20 meeting which has just been concluded in Hamburg, dogged by protests, was originally intended by the German presidency to be a way of building momentum around climate action in the wake of the Paris Agreement; however, the election of President Trump, and his subsequent decision to pull the US out of the Agreement, changed the nature of the summit altogether. There was widespread trepidation that the political consensus developed in Paris in 2015 on climate action would be shattered by… Read moreSouth Africa, the G20 and Climate Change: from Brown to Green?

G19 strong on energy and climate change – action to follow

Surprisingly strong result on energy and climate from G20 summit, or more accurately the G19. Passed the first part of ‘Trump Test’, as Germanwatch put it in an excellent, detailed analysis. The 19 (including Russia and Saudi Arabia) recommitted to the Paris Agreement. Moving to action is part 2, and a detailed Climate and Energy Action Plan is a good basis. Only the US cites ‘clean’ fossil fuels – but won’t stop momentum of the energy transition, to a greener… Read moreG19 strong on energy and climate change – action to follow

Bill Cowan.

It is with great sadness that we learnt of the death of one of our former colleagues – Bill Cowan. Bill Cowan passed away on June 3rd after a brief battle with pancreatic cancer. He died peacefully and painlessly with his three sons by his bedside. Colleagues and friends remember him as a man of integrity and intelligence; an immensely creative thinker who balanced elegant and relevant research with a deep commitment to helping the poor. Bill Cowan joined Anton Eberhard… Read moreBill Cowan.

Trump exit from Paris will hurt America most

On 1 June 2017, Donald Trump (DT) announced that his administration was withdrawing the US from the Paris Agreement.  The world’s largest economy is taking no responsibility for US historical emissions, and instead  reneging on what his country had previously agreed. Trump’s exit is a deeply immoral, reprehensible act. The speech on the Rose Garden lawns is full of the illogical statement one has come to expect from DT (see good analysis in The Guardian). It continues to astound how unethical… Read moreTrump exit from Paris will hurt America most

‘Green’ rating a first for UCT

The 400-seater New Lecture Theatre (NLT), at the southern end of University Avenue, was built with the aim of obtaining a four-star green rating from the Green Building Council of South Africa (GBCSA). Jigisha Mandalia, MPhil in Energy and Development Studies student at UCT’s Energy Research Centre, conducted a case study analysis of three recently completed UCT buildings: the New Engineering Building, Snape and the NLT. “UCT has been working on developing plans and targets to improve sustainability across campus… Read more‘Green’ rating a first for UCT

Harald Winkler to serve on High-Level Commission on Carbon Prices

At this year’s spring meetings of the World Bank and International Monetary Fund, and the G20 Hamburg Summit in July, finance ministers will gather to discuss, among other pressing matters, climate change. Carbon pricing is expected to take up some of the discussion time, particularly at the G20 Summit. Thankfully, an in-depth report on carbon pricing will be available – one with notable contributions by UCT’s Professor Harald Winkler. The Commission Winkler, the director of the Energy Research Centre, was… Read moreHarald Winkler to serve on High-Level Commission on Carbon Prices

JESA 27(4)

Articles in this issue The South African Renewable Energy Independent Power Producer Procurement Programme: A Review and Lessons Learned Anton Eberhard, Raine Naude Measurement and verification of irrigation pumping DSM projects: Application of novel methodology designs M. E. Storm, R. Gouws, L.J. Grobler Assessing the effectiveness of South Africa’s emissions based purchase tax for private passenger vehicles: a consumer choice modelling approach. S.J. Vosper, J.-F. Mercure Investigation of an octagon-shaped chimney solar power plant. L.W. Beneke, C.J.S. Fourie, Z. Huan… Read moreJESA 27(4)

Join our MOOC

The Energy Research Centre & UCT have recorded a MOOC on Climate Change Mitigation in Developing Countries. You are invited to take part and to encourage others to join you. The next course begins on the 26th of December 2016 and you can sign up with minimal fuss: https://www.coursera.org/learn/climate-change-mitigation Some of the comments from previous participants Excellent intro to Climate Change mitigation and what has already been done, and how to take forward from lessons learned. Super-awesome course that taught me about… Read moreJoin our MOOC

The cost of air pollution in South Africa

ERC researchers, Dr Katye Altieri and Samantha Keen analysed the impacts of energy-related air pollution using the environmental Benefits Mapping and Analysis Program (BenMAP) model that they developed for South Africa.   The high cost of air pollution The Global Burden of Disease (GBD) reported in 2012 that three million people die prematurely each year around the globe due to ambient air pollution (WHO, 2012), with low- and middle-income countries suffering the worst effects. Developing countries, that have a heavy reliance on fossil fuels,… Read moreThe cost of air pollution in South Africa