The 2018 Wagtail Conservation Festival, running at the Amanzimtoti Sports’ Centre from 9 to 10 November, is the perfect opportunity for KwaZulu-Natal’s stunning Sapphire Coast to preen its feathers and show the rest of the country the natural beauty this region has to offer. Presented by Birdlife Port Natal and the Amanzimtoti Sports’ Centre, the Wagtail Conservation Festival is following on from the hugely successful 2017 edition. This year’s event will once again cater to all ages and interests, with a number of environmentally-themed talks and activities planned for festival-goers. “Last year we welcomed some 2 000 visitors from across the province to the festival, which served to raise funds and create awareness about conservation while showcasing the beauty of the area,” explained Romy Wenzel, Chairman of Sapphire Coast Tourism. “This is the province’s largest conservation festival which caters to dedicated conservationists as well as those looking for a fun-filled day in nature. The event will see a number of new features and speakers, with an interactive play area for the little ones, as well as food and drink options throughout. It’s a great opportunity to expose visitors to the numerous eco-tourism gems that the Sapphire Coast has to offer.” The Wagtail Festival Dinner The Wagtail Conservation Festival starts on Friday, 9 November with The Wagtail Festival Dinner welcoming special guest speaker, Faansie Peacock. This renowned South African birder and bird artist has co-authored six bird books and will be launching his first children’s bird book, ‘Faasie’s Bird Book’ at the festival. His talk, entitled ‘Bird Brain - a comedic look at what makes birders tick’ will appeal to both birders and non-birders alike! The evening will also include musical performances by the duo Tim Lewis Music and TONY. Tickets cost R165 which includes a welcome cocktail, buffet-style meal and entrance to the Wagtail Conservation Festival on Saturday, 10 November. . . .
The successful graduation of 25 KwaCele residents in the NQF Level 3 National Certificate in Building and Civils’ Construction Masonry, sees them better-placed for future employment opportunities - with eight of the graduates already securing employment at Renishaw Hills. Surrounded by family, friends, KwaCele community leaders, and representatives from Renishaw Hills and local government, the candidates were awarded their Construction Education & Training Authority (CETA) certificates at a ceremony held at the iNkosi Mkakwa Cele Community Hall on Tuesday, 30 October. Funding for this sought-after learnership programme was secured by management of Renishaw Property Developments, developers of Renishaw Hills, the mature lifestyle village based just outside Scottburgh, with on-site training experience provided at Renishaw Hills. “We would like to congratulate each candidate on the successful completion of this learnership programme,” said Richard Crocker, Project Director of Renishaw Hills. “We have managed to sub-contract two of the candidates on an ongoing basis and a further six have secured employment with one of our major contractors. Hopefully this will encourage others to excel in future learnership programmes, empowered with the knowledge that if they perform well, there are employment opportunities waiting for them.” From the start, Renishaw Property Developments prioritised engaging with the surrounding KwaCele community, seeking ways to improve the lives of the area’s long-time residents. The view was for training and job creation with long-term sustainability and economic empowerment for the community. More than 100 individuals applied for the 25 posts, all of whom underwent a thorough screening process. The entry requirements stipulated that each candidate be under 25 years of age, unemployed and residing in the area falling under the KwaCele Traditional Council. The 25 chosen learners – 13 female, 12 male – underwent the intensive, . . .
When considering retirement options, downsizing is generally accepted as part of the deal, but so often retiring to an apartment is overlooked – for all the wrong reasons. “We have noted a lot of interest in our planned apartment offerings at Renishaw Hills,” said Phil Barker, managing director of Renishaw Property Developments, developers of Renishaw Hills, a mature lifestyle development on the KwaZulu-Natal South Coast. “The convenience of apartment living with the added benefit of a quality estate-based lifestyle makes them really desirable.” Here are 5 reasons to consider investing in an apartment for retirement. 1. Affordability The compact nature of an apartment means a lower price tag as well as reduced expenses related to upkeep and cleaning. In addition, the spacious apartment design maximises on natural light, encouraging the through-flow of sea breezes which mitigates the need for artificial cooling and lighting, further saving on costs. 2. Lock-up-and-go Retirement is a time to travel, explore new places and try new things. Apartment living affords retirees a secure, easy, lock-up-and-go option that provides the required freedom for a carefree lifestyle. 3. Security The apartment complex is secured through the state-of-the-art estate security. This includes 24-hour surveillance, perimeter patrols, electrified fencing and emergency reaction. The close proximity of neighbours is also a strong deterrent for any criminal activity. 4. Community living There are so many social benefits to living in an apartment within an estate. Residents are surrounded by other retirees, many of whom will have similar interests, and this creates a welcoming sense of community. Noticeboards and group messaging will alert residents to planned social activities, and for those who prefer personal space, there is no undue pressure to participate. 5. Use of facilities Renishaw Hills’ lifestyle village has a wealth of communal facilities which are . . .
Eight South African chefs were awarded Trailblazer status at the SASSI Trailblazer Awards, held at Harbour House, V&A Waterfront, Cape Town, Monday 29th October 2018. The eight awarded chefs are; Kayla-Ann Osborn of The Chef's Table, Durban. Ash Heeger of Riverine Rabbit, Cape Town. Glen Williams of Foxcroft, Cape Town. James Diack of Coobs, Johannesburg. Louis van Reenen from Arabella, Kleinmond. Lucas Carstens of Majeka House, Stellenbosch. Michael Cooke of Vergelegen, Somerset West. Xavier Francis of The Hyatt Regency, Johannesburg. Building on the phenomenal success of SASSI's "Green, Orange, Red" guide amongst the South African public, the SASSI Trailblazer Awards recognise and celebrate chefs who are actively championing sustainable seafood practices in their restaurants. Pavs Pillay, SASSI Programme Manager at WWF-SA, commented, "Our partnership with chefs is inspired by a commitment to help restore our overexploited seafood species. The chefs we are recognising have gone the extra mile in advocating the sustainability message." "Chefs serve as the gatekeepers for the food and hospitality industry and therefore play a critical role in leading market forces, influencing popular taste and promoting ocean-friendly seafood." she added. Awards organiser Clare Mack, of Spill Communications, said: "It's gratifying to see, in the sixth year of these awards, that many restaurants are adopting sustainable practices in seafood, without any intervention or prompting. Sustainability is now mainstream; it has really caught on." The criteria for the rewards were: The restaurant's seafood sustainability policy; The effectiveness of their communication of their seafood sustainability practices to their customers, employees and suppliers; Their level of engagement in communicating their seafood sustainability practices to a wider audience The 'Trailblazer factor' (those chefs and restaurants that are going the extra . . .
Volunteer Wildfire Services 2018/2019 New Recruit Induction: Wildfires are a part of life in the Western Cape and every fire season, agencies in the Cape Peninsula, the Overberg, the Cape Winelands and as far afield as the Cedarberg respond to thousands of fires, stretching resources to the limit. The Volunteer Wildfire Services (VWS), a group of close to 300 volunteer wildland firefighters, deploy from four fire bases – Newlands, Jonkershoek, South Peninsula and Helderberg – to provide much-needed support to the likes of CapeNature, Table Mountain National Park, Overberg District Municipality and Winelands District Municipality, fighting some of the most destructive wildfires Cape Town and the Western Cape have experienced. With the exception of a full-time employed general manager, the VWS is staffed, run and managed by committed people who all have day jobs. Many of the VWS’ deployments are at night, providing welcome relief for day-time fire crews, but once a VWS crew comes off the line, it’s back to base, home for a shower and maybe an hour or so of sleep, before heading for a full day at work or in the lecture hall. Each year the VWS recruits and trains over 80 new members. They undergo rigorous training and evaluations to ensure that they are ready to face the summer fire season. We will be inducting these newly trained and qualified members into the unit on Saturday 3 November at 15h00. This aligns with the start of the Western Cape summer fire season and will be a showcase of what the VWS has done over the past 19 years in order to prepare civilians for the rigours of wildland fire fighting. Please join us at The Shed, Santa Rd, Stellenbosch, 7600 CLICK HERE to submit your press release to MyPR.co.za. . . .
The sea is a vast area and, unlike in traditional land based game parks, is not fenced off in any way - marine life has free and unfettered access to the vastness of the ocean and humans are not able to see through the water to witness the sea life teeming below. When one searches for animals in a game park the surest way to find them is at a water hole or, when searching for predators, at the source of food. In the sea, things are slightly different: The entire sea is a 'water hole' The food source is a long chain normally near reefs but subject to 'invisible' currents. With reference to the image above, consider the following: The Agulhas Current flows down the East Coast of Africa to the geographic Southernmost tip of Africa - Cape Agulhas - a rocky headland and the beginning of the dividing line between the Atlantic and Indian Oceans. As the Agulhas current passes Algoa Bay off of Port Elizabeth it veers South and the first of the significant counter currents occurs. The Agulhas Bank South of the tip of Africa shows a large area of shallower and warmer water. The large area is the 'entry point' for Whales traveling North from the Arctic and 'funnels' these predators North East towards Algoa Bay and beyond. Migrating marine animals such as Whales come past our coastline to mate and feed so it makes sense that they will be best spotted in a warm/ish place where their potential mates are, combine that with a food source and the chances of spotting these creatures are very high. The Agulhas current after veering South will get small fish and nutrients in its grip and, when the Agulhas counter current veers back into the Southern Coastline, including Algoa Bay, it will bring this food source close to land. The Sardine Run Season - January to August - is proof that the prevailing winds of South West and West are at work bringing the Agulhas Current and valuable nutrients, close to the shore. So, what ideal conditions does . . .
JOHANNESBURG - 22 OCTOBER 2018 -- The Paper Recycling Association of South Africa (PRASA), the 15-year-old paper recycling arm of the Paper Manufacturers Association of South Africa (PAMSA), has a new name and identity: RecyclePaperZA. “For the past few years, members of the public have increasingly confused us with the state-owned enterprise, Prasa,” explains PAMSA executive director Jane Molony. “We have often been asked about train services, or questioned why a rail agency would be involved in recycling.” PAMSA recently initiated the name change process and invited submissions from its member companies. “The name was selected as it reflects a call to action,” explains Anele Sololo, manager for training, promotion and operations for RecyclePaperZA. “Incidentally, it also mirrors our website address www.recyclepaper.co.za, so it’s a perfect fit.” Backed by the pay-off line “Paper recycled. Paper Renewed”, the newly named paper recycling association will continue to promote the recovery and recycling of paper fibre as a vital link in the renewability chain. Paper is a renewable product made from farmed trees. As is the case with all trees, farmed trees absorb carbon dioxide necessary for growth and store this as carbon. When the wood is made into paper or other wood or cellulose products, the carbon remains locked up in the end product. Paper recycling ensures that this carbon remains out of the atmosphere for longer, while also providing an alternative fibre for paper manufacturers. Formed in 2003, RecyclePaperZA represents companies that process recovered paper and make new paper products. It also represents some manufacturers of liquid board packaging in the form of milk and juice cartons, paper cups and bowls. Earlier this year, the association announced that South Africa’s paper recycling rate tipped the scales at 1.3 million tonnes in 2017. This tonnage represents 70% of the 1.8 million tonnes of paper, board and liquid packaging available . . .
Johannesburg , 23 October 2018 - “A successful man, is one who can lay a firm foundation with the bricks others have thrown at him” [David Brinkley]. There can be no truer a saying, than this, for a young entrepreneur or start-up company and in the case of describing the work of Servest’s Enterprise Development Program that operates through the Lesipho Trust, this could not be more apt, in creating economic opportunities for its recipients. The Lesipho Trust is a fund and non-profit organisation (NGO), that seeks to provide opportunities and economic assistance to qualifying black South African’s and their businesses. The Lesipho Trust partners with communities and black businesses to create meaningful social change in areas of society, where the Trust operates. It assists companies in advancing their business and also provides them with the opportunity to become Servest preferred suppliers, thus ensuring that they remain sustainable entities. Naledi Kgoadi who owns Bophele & Ditiro Trading, a facilities management company, says, “the Trust has assisted us a great deal, we have acquired machinery that is going to help us grow and enable us to increase our revenues, by reducing our operating costs.” Each year the Lesipho Trusts sets a target for new intakes who fit the qualifying criteria, these include; the business must be in operation for a period of 1 - 2 years the business must earn less than R50 million It must be 100% black owned or black women owned it must be a registered business This past year, Thape Media, who consists of a husband and wife team, who combined their skills in the film industry, saw the fruits of their labour come to life, through the assistance of The Lesipho Trust. They currently produce two productions for TV, ‘Gospel Unplugged’ and ‘Fix my love’, as well as producing all Servest’s multi-media requirements. Through this relationship, they also have opportunities to collaborate and partner with Servest’s . . .
Modern Water plc, the owner of leading technologies for water and wastewater treatment and for the monitoring of water quality, has entered into a collaboration agreement with WEC Projects (Pty) Ltd, a leading South African EPC (engineering, procurement & construction) contractor which specialises in the provision of engineered solutions in the water and wastewater treatment sector. Based in Johannesburg, South Africa, WEC Projects is active throughout the African continent. WEC Projects will promote Modern Water's innovative and proprietary All-Membrane Brine Concentration ("AMBC") technology throughout the African continent. Brine is a by-product of many industrial processes and can pose a significant environmental hazard, both due to corrosive and sediment-forming effects of salts and toxicity of other chemicals diluted in it. Technologies for treatment of polluted brine include evaporation processes, such as brine concentrators and crystallizers employing mechanical vapour recompression and steam. Traditional brine treatment, from recycling to Zero Liquid Discharge ("ZLD") methods, is typically complex, multi-stage and costly, representing a significant cost to businesses. Modern Water's advanced technology allows customers to achieve higher brine concentrations than traditional membrane techniques, which significantly reduces the wastewater volume required for the subsequent brine crystalliser treatment. Simon Humphrey, Modern Water's CEO, said: "WEC Projects is a leading contractor in Southern Africa and we are glad to have found such a superb partner to promote our AMBC, adding to our other excellent partnerships in India with Advent Envirocare and with Sunup in China. Our AMBC technology is proven to deliver a step-change in performance and is the key step in significantly reducing operating costs for customers and consequently lower operating costs." Commenting on the project, Wayne Taljaard, WEC Project's CEO said: "Modern Water's . . .
Johannesburg, 16 October 2018 - According to recent statistics, South Africa produces 10 million tonnes of food waste every year and our country reportedly has the largest proportion of food wastage in Africa. That is food that is produced but never consumed and ends up in landfills, including fruits, vegetables and cereals which alone account for 70% of this waste. Yet, an average of 12 million people - almost a quarter of the country’s population - go to bed hungry every night. Kate Stubbs, Director of Business Development and Marketing at Interwaste, believes this is a travesty and shares her views on how alternative strategies to managing food waste should be investigated. World Food Day is commemorated globally on the 16th of October - aimed at driving awareness of, and promoting action to address, world hunger. “The theme this year of, ‘our actions are our future’, encapsulates the message perfectly. It is only through understanding that we as the people in our country and of the world – and across all spheres of Government, industry and society – have a shared interest and a role to play, in both managing food waste appropriately, but also importantly to change our attitudes and behaviours to respect food,” says Stubbs. Globally, it is estimated that 30% of all food produced, goes to waste. The South African Government has made a global commitment to halve food waste by 2030. In support of this, new laws have been legislated and the regulations are being rolled out, aimed at cleaning-up South Africa and to reduce the negative environmental and health impacts caused by waste. “This brings about innovation in the waste management and food production industries in that these frameworks are setting a benchmark for companies to derive better and more sustainable waste management solutions – solutions that focus beyond the landfill model but rather on creating alternative, commoditised products from the waste produced,” indicates Stubbs. “Companies in . . .