Sipho Kings is the person the Mail & Guardian sends to places when people’s environment is collapsing. This leads him from mine dumps to sewage flowing down streets – a hazardous task for his trusty pair of work shoes. Having followed his development-minded parents around Southern Africa his first port of call for reporting on the environment is people on the ground. When things go wrong – when harvests collapse and water dries up – they have limited resources to adapt, which people can never let politicians forget. For the rest of the time he tries to avoid the boggling extremes of corporations and environmental organisations, and rather looks for that fabled 'truth' thing. For Christmas he wants a global agreement where humanity accepts that sustainable development is the way forward. And maybe for all the vested interest to stop being so extreme. And world peace. And a sturdier pair of shoes.
SA’s major polluters are going ahead with plans to offset their emissions, lowering pollution in one place to save money and continue polluting.
South African soil is unsuited to ploughing and farmers have found an alternative way to plant in no-till farming.
As drought continues to cripple the country, already scarce groundwater reserves are being plundered without oversight.
The recent rains might ameliorate a bleak picture but there appears to be no silver lining to the problems ahead, including food supply.
Poaching levels might have dropped in South Africa, but the number of rhino killed across the continent has hit record levels.
Water authorities are setting up schemes to supply water to the three million residents who are faced with shortages, thanks to the ongoing drought.
Researchers say the thermal warming of oceans has been underestimated and is causing sea levels to rise at double the expected pace.
Research out this week shows that the recent temperature record-breaking years are caused by human endeavours that drive global warming.
The margin by which 2015 beat the previous year has been flagged by three weather agencies as cause for great concern.
Crops should be in the ground and white maize starting to germinate. But only half the national crop has been planted and less than that will survive.