Legalbrief 6 May, 2019
Climate Change: SA releases draft adaptation strategy
SA’s masterplan to deal with climate change will come with something of a mixed message, according to a slick new draft of the document published yesterday. According to a Business Insider report, on the one hand, poor people will be vulnerable to the ravages of more frequent extreme weather events, and failure to adapt to higher temperatures and unpredictable rainfall could spell trouble. On the other hand, climate change presents investment opportunities – and South Africa could actually come out of it stronger. The draft National Climate Change Adaptation Strategy (NCCAS) is intended to provide ‘a common vision of climate change adaptation and climate resilience’ for SA, with an outline of priorities. The last major draft was published for public comment in October 2017. This week Environmental Affairs Minister Nomvula Mokonyane published a new draft which, although still open for public comment until early June, has been laid out with colour-coded chapters and graphics, ready to be published as a booklet. ‘Planning for climate change ensures that SA is in a position to leverage opportunities that arise due to changing climatic conditions and enhance its global competitiveness,’ reads the explanation of one ‘subsidiary message’ proposed as part of the communication campaign. See Policy Watch section below.