NATIONAL CLIMATE CHANGE RESPONSE
WHITE PAPER
environmental affairs
Department:
REPUBLIC OF SOUTH AFRICA
Environmental...
environmental affairs
NATIONAL CLIMATE CHANGE RESPONSE
WHITE PAPER
Department:
REPUBLIC OF SOUTH AFRICA
Environmental...
2
TABLE OF CONTENTS
LIST OF ABBREVIATIONS .................................................................................
3
8. NEAR-TERM PRIORITY FLAGSHIP PROGRAMMES ................................................................................
4
LIST OF ABREVIATIONS
CDM Clean Development Mechanism
DBSA Development Bank of Southern Africa
DoE Department of Ener...
5
Executive Summary
Climate change is already a measurable reality and along
with other developing countries, South Afr...
6
Executive Summary
mitigation outcomes as well as job creation and other
sustainable developmental benefits. This opti...
7
Executive Summary
To monitor the success of responses to climate change,
and to replicate the ones that have worked w...
8
1. Introduction
1. INTRODUCTION
The phenomenon known as “climate change”, the focus of
this policy, refers to an ong...
9
1. Introduction
problem requiring a global solution through the concerted
and cooperative efforts of all countries. S...
10
1. Introduction
capacities, including promoting research and
systematic observation in areas beyond national
jurisd...
11
2. National Climate Change Response Objective
2. NATIONAL CLIMATE CHANGE RESPONSE OBJECTIVE
South Africa will build ...
12
3. Principles
3. PRINCIPLES
The achievement of South Africa’s climate change response
objective is guided by the pr...
13
4. The South African Climate Change Response Strategy
4. THE SOUTH AFRICAN CLIMATE CHANGE RESPONSE STRATEGY
Response...
14
4. The South African Climate Change Response Strategy
оо Scaled-up roll-out of those existing successful
policies an...
15
4. The South African Climate Change Response Strategy
towards the national priorities of job creation,
poverty allev...
16
5. Adaptation
5. ADAPTATION
5.1 Overall approach
All states in the Southern African sub-region face the
challenges...
17
5. Adaptation
In addition to a refinement of top-down approaches,
developing more detailed bottom-up approaches info...
18
5.2.2 Sustaining state-of-the-art, water-related research
and capacity development in all aspects of climate
change ...
19
as well as agricultural production, ownership, and
financing models to promote the development of
“climate-smart agr...
20
promotion of behaviours that minimise exposure to
high temperatures, namely “avoidance behaviour”.
5.4.4 Design and ...
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5.5.1 Strengthen biodiversity management and research
institutions so that they can monitor, assess and
respond effe...
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• Water demand in urban centres is growing rapidly,
placing undue stress on water supply systems.
Investment in wast...
23
• Rural areas are under-represented in the climate
monitoring network despite the fact that they are
likely to be th...
24
that demarcate the areas in which development is
prohibited or controlled. Government will review
and amend the legi...
25
6. Mitigation
6.1 Overall approach to mitigation
South Africa’s approach to mitigation is informed by two
contexts:...
26
6.1.6 Using the market – Deploying a range of
economic instruments to support the system of
desired emissions reduct...
National Climate Change Response White Paper
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National Climate Change Response White Paper

Climate change is already a measurable reality and along with other developing countries, South Africa is especially vulnerable to its impacts. This White Paper presents the South African Government’s vision for an effective climate change response and the long-term, just transition to a climate-resilient and lower-carbon economy and society. South Africa’s response to climate change has two objectives: • Effectively manage inevitable climate change impacts through interventions that build and sustain South Africa’s social, economic and environmental resilience and emergency response capacity. • Make a fair contribution to the global effort to stabilise greenhouse gas (GHG) concentrations in the atmosphere at a level that avoids dangerous anthropogenic interference with the climate system within a timeframe that enables economic, social and environmental development to proceed in a sustainable manner. This response is guided by principles set out in the Constitution, the Bill of Rights, the National Environmental Management Act, the Millennium Declaration and the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change. These principles are detailed in section 3. The overall strategic approach for South Africa’s climate change response is needs driven and customised; developmental; transformational, empowering and participatory; dynamic and evidence-based; balanced and cost effective; and integrated and aligned. In terms of strategic priorities, the White Paper sets out South Africa’s climate change response strategy to achieve the National Climate Change Response Objective in a manner consistent with the outlined principles and approach and which is structured around the following strategic priorities: risk reduction and management; mitigation actions with significant outcomes; sectoral responses; policy and regulatory alignment; informed decision making and planning; integrated planning; technology research, development and innovation; facilitated behaviour change; behaviour change through choice; and resource mobilisation. See section 4 for details of the elements of the response policy. In terms of adaptation, the National Climate Change Response includes a risk-based process to identify and prioritise short- and medium-term adaptation interventions to be addressed in sector plans. The process will also identify the adaptation responses that require coordination between sectors and departments and it will be reviewed every five years. For the immediate future, sectors that need particular attention are water, agriculture and forestry, health, biodiversity and human settlements. Resilience to climate variability and climate change-related extreme weather events will be the basis for South Africa’s future approach to disaster management and we will use region-wide approaches where appropriate.
Published on: Mar 3, 2016
Published in: Government & Nonprofit      
Source: www.slideshare.net


Transcripts - National Climate Change Response White Paper

  • 1. NATIONAL CLIMATE CHANGE RESPONSE WHITE PAPER environmental affairs Department: REPUBLIC OF SOUTH AFRICA Environmental Affairs
  • 2. environmental affairs NATIONAL CLIMATE CHANGE RESPONSE WHITE PAPER Department: REPUBLIC OF SOUTH AFRICA Environmental Affairs
  • 3. 2 TABLE OF CONTENTS LIST OF ABBREVIATIONS ................................................................................................................................................................... 4 EXECUTIVE SUMMARY ....................................................................................................................................................................... 5 1. INTRODUCTION ............................................................................................................................................................................. 8 2. NATIONAL CLIMATE CHANGE RESPONSE OBJECTIVE .................................................................................................... 11 3. PRINCIPLES ....................................................................................................................................................................................... 12 4. THE SOUTH AFRICAN CLIMATE CHANGE RESPONSE STRATEGY ............................................................................. 13 4.1 Overall Approach ....................................................................................................................................................................... 13 4.2 Strategic Priorities ..................................................................................................................................................................... 14 5. ADAPTATION ................................................................................................................................................................................... 16 5.1 Overall Approach ....................................................................................................................................................................... 16 5.2 Water ............................................................................................................................................................................................ 17 5.3 Agriculture and Commercial Forestry .................................................................................................................................. 18 5.4 Health ............................................................................................................................................................................................ 19 5.5 Biodiversity And Ecosystems .................................................................................................................................................. 20 5.6 Human Settlements – Urban Settlements ........................................................................................................................... 21 5.7 Human Settlements – Rural Settlements ............................................................................................................................. 22 5.8 Human Settlements – Coastal Settlements ......................................................................................................................... 23 5.9 Disaster Risk Reduction and Management .......................................................................................................................... 24 6. MITIGATION .................................................................................................................................................................................... 25 6.1 Overall Approach to Mitigation .............................................................................................................................................. 25 6.2 South Africa’s Emissions ........................................................................................................................................................... 26 6.3 Mitigation Potential ................................................................................................................................................................... 26 6.4 The Benchmark National GHG Emissions Trajectory Range ........................................................................................... 27 6.5 The Carbon Budget Approach ................................................................................................................................................ 28 6.6 Sectoral Mitigation and Lower-Carbon Development Strategies ................................................................................... 28 6.7 Ghg Emissions Inventory ......................................................................................................................................................... 29 7. MANAGING RESPONSE MEASURES ....................................................................................................................................... 30
  • 4. 3 8. NEAR-TERM PRIORITY FLAGSHIP PROGRAMMES .............................................................................................................. 31 8.1 The Climate Change Response Public Works Flagship Programme ................................................................................ 31 8.2 The Water Conservation and Demand Management Flagship Programme ................................................................... 31 8.3 The Renewable Energy Flagship Programme ....................................................................................................................... 31 8.4 The Energy Efficiency and Energy Demand Management Flagship Programme ............................................................ 32 8.5 The Transport Flagship Programme ........................................................................................................................................ 32 8.6 The Waste Management Flagship Programme ..................................................................................................................... 32 8.7 The Carbon Capture and Sequestration Flagship Programme ........................................................................................ 32 8.8 The Adaptation Research Flagship Programme .................................................................................................................... 33 9. JOB CREATION ................................................................................................................................................................................ 34 9.1 Policy Outcomes ........................................................................................................................................................................ 34 9.2 Policy Instruments ..................................................................................................................................................................... 34 9.3 Timing of Interventions ............................................................................................................................................................ 35 10. MAINSTREAMING CLIMATE-RESILIENT DEVELOPMENT ............................................................................................... 36 10.1 Policy and Planning Review and Regulatory Audits ......................................................................................................... 36 10.2 Roles and Institutional Arrangements .................................................................................................................................. 36 10.3 Partnering with Stakeholders ................................................................................................................................................ 38 10.4 Coordination Mechanisms .................................................................................................................................................... 39 10.5 Communication and Behaviour Change ............................................................................................................................. 39 10.6 Regulatory Measures .............................................................................................................................................................. 40 10.7 Market-Based Instruments .................................................................................................................................................... 40 11. RESOURCE MOBILISATION ...................................................................................................................................................... 43 11.1 Finance ....................................................................................................................................................................................... 43 11.2 Education ................................................................................................................................................................................... 45 11.3 Science and Technology Development ............................................................................................................................... 45 12. MONITORING AND EVALUATION ......................................................................................................................................... 47 12.1 Monitoring Climate Change .................................................................................................................................................. 47 12.2 Medium- and Long-Term Modelling .................................................................................................................................... 47 12.3 Monitoring Responses ............................................................................................................................................................ 48 13. CONCLUSION .............................................................................................................................................................................. 49
  • 5. 4 LIST OF ABREVIATIONS CDM Clean Development Mechanism DBSA Development Bank of Southern Africa DoE Department of Energy DEA Department of Environmental Affairs DST Department of Science and Technology DTI Department of Trade and Industry GDP Gross Domestic Product GHG Greenhouse gas GHGs Greenhouse gases IGCCC Intergovernmental Committee on Climate Change IMCCC Inter-Ministerial Committee on Climate Change IPCC Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change IRP 2010 Integrated Resource Plan for Electricity Generation 2010 MDGs Millennium Development Goals MRV Measure, report and verify NCCC National Committee on Climate Change NEDLAC National Economic Development and Labour Council NEMA National Environmental Management Act NEVA National Employment Vulnerability Assessments NEVB National Employment Vulnerability Baseline NGO Non-Governmental Organisation NGP New Growth Path NRF National Research Foundation SAAQIS South African Air Quality Information System SARVA South African Risk and Vulnerability Atlas SETA Sector Education and Training Authority SJRPs Sector Jobs Resilience Plans UNFCCC United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change
  • 6. 5 Executive Summary Climate change is already a measurable reality and along with other developing countries, South Africa is especially vulnerable to its impacts. This White Paper presents the South African Government’s vision for an effective climate change response and the long-term, just transition to a climate-resilient and lower-carbon economy and society. South Africa’s response to climate change has two objectives: • Effectively manage inevitable climate change impacts through interventions that build and sustain South Africa’s social, economic and environmental resilience and emergency response capacity. • Make a fair contribution to the global effort to stabilise greenhouse gas (GHG) concentrations in the atmosphere at a level that avoids dangerous anthropogenic interference with the climate system within a timeframe that enables economic, social and environmental development to proceed in a sustainable manner. This response is guided by principles set out in the Constitution, the Bill of Rights, the National Environmental Management Act, the Millennium Declaration and the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change. These principles are detailed in section 3. The overall strategic approach for South Africa’s climate change response is needs driven and customised; developmental; transformational, empowering and participatory; dynamic and evidence-based; balanced and cost effective; and integrated and aligned. In terms of strategic priorities, the White Paper sets out South Africa’s climate change response strategy to achieve the National Climate Change Response Objective in a manner consistent with the outlined principles and approach and which is structured around the following strategic priorities: risk reduction and management; mitigation actions with significant outcomes; sectoral responses; policy and regulatory alignment; informed decision making and planning; integrated planning; technology research, development and innovation; facilitated behaviour change; behaviour change through choice; and resource mobilisation. See section 4 for details of the elements of the response policy. In terms of adaptation, the National Climate Change Response includes a risk-based process to identify and prioritise short- and medium-term adaptation interventions to be addressed in sector plans. The process will also identify the adaptation responses that require coordination between sectors and departments and it will be reviewed every five years. For the immediate future, sectors that need particular attention are water, agriculture and forestry, health, biodiversity and human settlements. Resilience to climate variability and climate change-related extreme weather events will be the basis for South Africa’s future approach to disaster management and we will use region-wide approaches where appropriate. Section 5 expands on the adaptation part of the response policy. South Africa’s approach to mitigation, which is addressed by section 6 of the response policy, balances the country’s contribution as a responsible global citizen to the international effort to curb global emissions with the economic and social opportunities presented by the transition to a lower-carbon economy as well as with the requirement that the country successfully tackles the development challenges facing it. The key elements in the overall approach to mitigation will be: • Using a National GHG Emissions Trajectory Range, against which the collective outcome of all mitigation actions will be measured; • Defining desired emission reduction outcomes for each significant sector and sub-sector of the economy based on an in-depth assessment of the mitigation potential, best available mitigation options, science, evidence and a full assessment of the costs and benefits; • Adopting a carbon budget approach to provide for flexibility and least-cost mechanisms for companies in relevant sectors and/or sub-sectors and, where appropriate, translating carbon budgets into company level desired emission reduction outcomes. • Requiring companies and economic sectors or sub-sectors for which desired emission reduction outcomes have been established to prepare and submit mitigation plans that set out how they intend to achieve the desired emission reduction outcomes. • Developing and implementing a wide range and mix of different types of mitigation approaches, policies, measures and actions that optimise the EXECUTIVE SUMMARY
  • 7. 6 Executive Summary mitigation outcomes as well as job creation and other sustainable developmental benefits. This optimal mix of mitigation actions will be developed to achieve the defined desired emission reduction outcomes for each sector and sub-sector of the economy by ensuring that actions are specifically tailored to the potential, best available solutions and other relevant conditions related to the specific sector, sub-sector or organisation concerned; • The deployment of a range of economic instruments to support the system of desired emissions reduction outcomes, including the appropriate pricing of carbon and economic incentives, as well as the possible use of emissions offset or emission reduction trading mechanisms for those relevant sectors, sub-sectors, companies or entities where a carbon budget approach has been selected. • A national system of data collection to provide detailed, complete, accurate and up-to-date emissions data in the form of a Greenhouse Gas Inventory and a Monitoring and Evaluation System to support the analysis of the impact of mitigation measures. In addition to the direct physical impacts of climate change, there are also secondary economic impacts where South Africa may be economically vulnerable to response measures - measures taken both internationally and nationally, to reduce GHG emissions. As discussed in section 7, Government will take a multi-pronged approach to addressing and managing response measures, especially in respect of those that may have negative economic impacts. A suite of Near-term Priority Flagship Programmes consisting of both new initiatives and the scaling up of existing initiatives will be implemented while the first sectoral desired emission reduction outcomes and carbon budgets are being developed and initial adaptation interventions prioritised. This component is addressed in section 8. For job creation, as described in section 9, the National Climate Change Response aims to limit jobs contraction to those areas of the economy where excessive carbon intensity is unsustainable, whilst promoting and expanding the green economy sectors. The National Climate Change Response also aims to promote investment in human and productive resources that will grow the green economy. To do this, Government will assess the vulnerability of the different economic sectors to climate change and develop Sector Job Resilience Plans. To mainstream climate-resilient development, section 10 notes that all Government departments and state-owned enterprises will need to review the policies, strategies, legislation, regulations and plans falling within their jurisdictions to ensure full alignment with the National Climate Change Response within two years of the publication of this policy. On the basis of the outcome of these reviews, government will determine what adjustments need to be made to achieve alignment with the goals and objectives of the National Climate Change Response, and will identify any additional legislative or regulatory measures that are needed. The National Climate Change Response itself will be reviewed every five years from the publication of this policy. All sectors of the South African society will take part in the effort to mainstream climate-resilient development. Existing institutional arrangements, such as the Cabinet Clusters, the National Planning Commission, the Forum of South African Directors-General, the Parliamentary Portfolio Committee on Water and Environment Affairs, the Inter-Ministerial Committee on Climate Change, the Intergovernmental Committee on Climate Change and the multi-stakeholder National Committee on Climate Change will be used to drive this new policy direction. Government departments will start communicating with citizens about climate change to inform and educate them and to influence their behavioural choices. This includes setting up and maintaining early warning systems so that people can take specific actions to reduce risks to themselves, their households and property. South Africa needs to mobilise financial, human and knowledge resources to effectively address climate change. To this end, Government will use existing financial institutions and instruments and it will help to develop new ones. This includes international financial assistance specifically for climate change response actions. During the initial period of transition to a climate-resilient and lower-carbon economy and society, Government will establish an interim climate finance coordination mechanism to secure the necessary resources for priority programmes. See section 11 for further details on resource mobilisation. To formulate effective responses to climate change, South Africa needs a country-wide monitoring system to measure climate variables at scales appropriate to the institutions that must implement climate change responses.
  • 8. 7 Executive Summary To monitor the success of responses to climate change, and to replicate the ones that have worked well, we need to measure their cost, outcome and impact. To this end, South Africa will, within two years of the publication of this policy, design and publish a draft Climate Change Response Monitoring and Evaluation System. Although the Climate Change Response Monitoring and Evaluation System will be based on South African scientific measurement standards and will be undertaken through the Presidency’s Outcomes- Based System, it is expected that the system will evolve with international Measuring, Reporting and Verification requirements. Section 12 details the systems needed to monitor and evaluate climate change and our responses to it.
  • 9. 8 1. Introduction 1. INTRODUCTION The phenomenon known as “climate change”, the focus of this policy, refers to an ongoing trend of changes in the earth’s general weather conditions as a result of an average rise in the temperature of the earth’s surface often referred to as global warming. This rise in the average global temperature is due, primarily, to the increased concentration of gases known as greenhouse gases (GHGs) in the atmosphere that are emitted by human activities. These gases intensify a natural phenomenon called the “greenhouse effect” by forming an insulating layer in the atmosphere that reduces the amount of the sun’s heat that radiates back into space and therefore has the effect of making the earth warmer. While weather changes on a daily basis, climate represents the statistical distribution of weather patterns over time, and on a global scale has changed only very slowly in the past – usually over periods of tens of thousands of years or even millions of years which allows time for the earth’s bio-physical systems to adapt naturally to the changing climatic conditions. Currently, the global climate is changing much more rapidly as a result of global warming, leading to, among others, the melting of polar and glacier ice, sea-level rise, ocean acidification, changes in rainfall and snowfall patterns, more frequent floods and droughts and increased frequency and intensity of extreme weather events, such as tornadoes, hurricanes and cyclones. The rapid rate of this climate change does not allow the earth’s bio-physical systems to adapt to these changes naturally. Evidence of rapid climate change, including more frequent and intense weather systems and greater climate variability, has already been observed and includes: • increases in the average global temperature; with the past decade being the hottest on record; • rises in the average global sea level; • changes in average rainfall patterns, with some regions experiencing higher rainfall (e.g. Northern Europe) and other areas experiencing drying (e.g. the Sahel and southern Africa); • increased frequency of heavy rainfall and extreme weather events over most land areas; and • more intense and longer droughts, particularly in the tropics and subtropics. GHGs are emitted from, and are reabsorbed by, a variety of natural sources, but the rate at which human economies and societies are emitting these gases far exceeds the capacity of natural ecosystems to reabsorb them. Increased industrial activity since the mid-18th century has led to a rapid increase in the atmospheric concentration of GHGs such as carbon dioxide, methane and nitrous oxide, in large part due to the burning of fossil fuels derived from oil, coal and natural gas. We also know that land-based human activities, such as forest clearing and unsustainable agricultural practices, are not only increasing GHG emissions from these sources, but are also reducing the earth’s natural ability to absorb GHGs. The evidence that current global warming is due to human activities associated with industrialisation and modern agriculture is overwhelming. The rate of change to the earth’s climate exceeds the ability of all types of ecosystems (marine, coastal, freshwater, and terrestrial) to adapt as well as compromising their ability to function effectively. Ecosystems provide important services to society, such as the formation of soil; the provision of food, fresh water, wood, fibre and fuel; the regulation of climate, floods and the spread of disease; protection from storm surges and floods; and a range of cultural, spiritual, educational and recreational services. The protection of biodiversity, habitats and ecosystems is essential to the maintenance of these services, which is a key pillar for sustainable development. It is acknowledged that Africa, as a whole, has contributed least to GHG concentrations in the atmosphere, but also faces some of the worst consequences and generally has the least capacity to cope with climate change impacts. However, it is also recognised that South Africa is a relatively significant contributor to global climate change with significant GHG emission levels from its energy-intensive, fossil-fuel powered economy. On the other hand, South Africa is extremely vulnerable and exposed to the impacts of climate change due to our socio-economic and environmental context. Climate variability, including the increased frequency and intensity of extreme weather events, will disproportionately affect the poor. South Africa is already a water-stressed country and we face future drying trends and weather variability with cycles of droughts and sudden excessive rains. We have to urgently strengthen the resilience of our society and economy to such climate change impacts and to develop and implement policies, measures, mechanisms and infrastructure that protect the most vulnerable. The science is clear that action to address the causes and impacts of climate change by a single country or small group of countries will not be successful. This is a global
  • 10. 9 1. Introduction problem requiring a global solution through the concerted and cooperative efforts of all countries. Should multi-lateral international action not effectively limit the average global temperature increase to below 2°C above pre-industrial levels, the potential impacts on South Africa in the medium-to long-term are significant and potentially catastrophic. Even under emission scenarios that are more conservative than current international emission trends, it has been predicted that by mid-century the South African coast will warm by around 1 to 2°C and the interior by around 2 to 3°C. By 2100, warming is projected to reach around 3 to 4°C along the coast, and 6 to 7°C in the interior. With such temperature increases, life as we know it will change completely: parts of the country will be much drier and increased evaporation will ensure an overall decrease in water availability. This will significantly affect human health, agriculture, other water-intensive economic sectors such as the mining and electricity-generation sectors as well as the environment in general. Increased occurrence and severity of veld and forest fires; extreme weather events; and floods and droughts will also have significant impacts. Sea-level rise will negatively impact the coast and coastal infrastructure. Mass extinctions of endemic plant and animal species will greatly reduce South Africa’s biodiversity with consequent impacts on eco-system services. Against this national context, the South African Government: • Accepts the conclusions of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) in its Fourth Assessment Report, that warming of the climate system is unequivocal and that the increase in GHG concentrations as a result of human activity is primarily responsible for this warming trend. • Regards climate change as one of the greatest threats to sustainable development and believes that climate change, if unmitigated, has the potential to undo or undermine many of the positive advances made in meeting South Africa’s own development goals and the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs). • Having ratified both the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) and its Kyoto Protocol, will continue to meaningfully engage in the current multilateral negotiations to further strengthen and enhance the international response to the climate change crisis. The Government specifically aims to continue its efforts to strengthen and ensure the full implementation of the UNFCCC and its Kyoto Protocol through additional multi-lateral rules-based and legally-binding international agreements that will come into force after 2012. These should effectively limit the average global temperature increase to below a maximum of 2°C above pre-industrial levels. In so doing, South Africa will strive to ensure that such agreements are inclusive, fair and effective; reflect a balance between adaptation and mitigation responses; and recognise that solving the climate problem will only be possible if developing countries’ priorities of eradicating poverty and promoting sustainable development are taken into consideration. • Notwithstanding these ongoing international negotiations, reaffirms that, in terms of the provisions of Articles 4, 5, 6 and 12 of the UNFCCC as well as Article 10 of the Kyoto Protocol, South Africa already has existing international legally binding obligations to: -- Formulate, implement, publish and regularly update policies, measures and programmes to mitigate its emission of GHGs and adapt to the adverse effects of inevitable climate change; -- Monitor and periodically report to the international community the country’s GHG inventory; steps taken and envisaged to implement the UNFCCC; and any other information relevant to the achievement of the objective of the UNFCCC, including information relevant for the calculation of global emission trends; -- Sustainably manage, conserve and enhance GHG sinks and reservoirs, including terrestrial, coastal and marine ecosystems, biomass, forests and oceans; -- Develop climate change response plans to address integrated coastal zone, water resources, agriculture, and land protection and rehabilitation; -- Mainstream climate change considerations into social, economic and environmental policy; -- Promote and cooperate in the development, application, diffusion and transfer of GHG emission mitigation technologies, practices and processes; -- Further develop and support research and systematic observation organisations, networks and programmes as well as efforts to strengthen systematic observation, research and technical
  • 11. 10 1. Introduction capacities, including promoting research and systematic observation in areas beyond national jurisdiction; and -- Develop and implement education, training and public awareness programmes on climate change and its effects to promote and facilitate scientific, technical and managerial skills as well as public access to information, public awareness of and participation in addressing climate change. Government also acknowledges that: • Notwithstanding the effectiveness of any strengthened international response to the climate change crisis, a certain amount of climate change is already observed and further climate change will be inevitable due to the slow response (or inertia) of the climate system to changes in the concentration of GHGs in the atmosphere. Therefore South Africa will have to adapt to these impacts by managing its climate and weather-related risks, reducing its vulnerability and increasing the resilience of our society and economy to the adverse effects of climate change and variability; • The stabilisation of GHG concentrations in the atmosphere at a level that prevents dangerous interference with the climate system requires the implementation of a sufficiently ambitious and effective global agreement on GHG emission reductions. In this context, as a responsible global citizen, and in keeping with its developing country status, its capability and its share of responsibility for the problem, South Africa is committed to making a fair contribution to the global effort to reduce GHG emissions. At the same time, the country must ensure that the necessary climate change-related investments contribute to building South Africa’s future economic competitiveness and economic growth and contribute to its over-riding national priorities for sustainable development, job creation, improving public and environmental health and poverty eradication; and • That although there will be costs associated with South Africa’s adaptation and GHG emission reduction efforts, there will also be significant short and long-term social and economic benefits, including improved international competitiveness, that will result from a transition to a lower-carbon economy and society. Furthermore, various economic studies have shown that the costs of early action will be far less than the costs of delay and inaction. Given the cross-cutting nature of climate change impacts and responses, Government further recognises that an effective response to climate change requires national policy to ensure a coordinated, coherent, efficient and effective response to the global challenge of climate change. The policy outlined in this White Paper embodies South Africa’s commitment to a fair contribution to stabilising global GHG concentrations in the atmosphere and to protecting the country and its people from the impacts of inevitable climate change. It presents the vision for an effective climate change response and the long-term transition to a climate-resilient, equitable and internationally competitive lower-carbon economy and society – a vision premised on Government’s commitment to sustainable development and a better life for all.
  • 12. 11 2. National Climate Change Response Objective 2. NATIONAL CLIMATE CHANGE RESPONSE OBJECTIVE South Africa will build the climate resilience of the country, its economy and its people and manage the transition to a climate-resilient, equitable and internationally competitive lower-carbon economy and society in a manner that simultaneously addresses South Africa’s over-riding national priorities for sustainable development, job creation, improved public and environmental health, poverty eradication, and social equality. In this regard, South Africa will: • Effectively manage inevitable climate change impacts through interventions that build and sustain South Africa’s social, economic and environmental resilience and emergency response capacity. • Make a fair contribution to the global effort to stabilise GHG concentrations in the atmosphere at a level that avoids dangerous anthropogenic interference with the climate system within a timeframe that enables economic, social and environmental development to proceed in a sustainable manner.
  • 13. 12 3. Principles 3. PRINCIPLES The achievement of South Africa’s climate change response objective is guided by the principles set out in the Constitution, the Bill of Rights, the National Environmental Management Act (NEMA), the MDGs and the UNFCCC. The principles include, amongst others: • Common but differentiated responsibilities and respective capabilities – aligning our domestic measures to reduce the country’s GHG emissions and adapt to the adverse effects of climate change with our unique national circumstances, stage of development and capacity to act. • Equity – ensuring a fair allocation of effort, cost and benefits in the context of the need to address disproportionate vulnerabilities, responsibilities, capabilities, disparities and inequalities. • Special needs and circumstances – considering the special needs and circumstances of localities and people that are particularly vulnerable to the adverse effects of climate change, including vulnerable groups such as women, and especially poor and/or rural women; children, especially infants and child-headed families; the aged; the sick; and the physically challenged. • Uplifting the poor and vulnerable – climate change policies and measures should address the needs of the poor and vulnerable and ensure human dignity, whilst endeavouring to attain environmental, social and economic sustainability. • Intra- and Inter-generational sustainability – managing our ecological, social and economic resources and capital responsibly for current and future generations. • The Precautionary Principle – applying a risk-averse and cautious approach, which takes into account the limits of current knowledge about the consequences of decisions and actions. • The Polluter Pays Principle – those responsible for harming the environment paying the costs of remedying pollution and environmental degradation and supporting any consequent adaptive response that may be required. • Informed participation – enhancing public awareness and understanding of climate change causes and impacts to promote participation and action at all levels. • Economic, social and ecological pillars of sustainable development – recognising that a robust and sustainable economy and a healthy society depends on the services that well-functioning ecosystems provide, and that enhancing the sustainability of the economic, social and ecological services is an integral component of an effective and efficient climate change response.
  • 14. 13 4. The South African Climate Change Response Strategy 4. THE SOUTH AFRICAN CLIMATE CHANGE RESPONSE STRATEGY Responses to climate change have been commonly categorised as either aimed at reducing the rate at which climate is changing to levels that occur naturally (and especially reducing the atmospheric concentrations of GHGs, so-called “mitigation”) or responding to the adverse effects of climate change (“adaptation”). In addition, there is also the issue of managing any unintended negative consequences of climate change policies and measures, widely referred to as “response measures”, on other countries. However, an effective South African climate change response requires economic, social and environmental interventions that integrate mitigation and adaptation elements within a developmental framework. Furthermore, an effective South African climate change response also requires the management of any response measures generated by our action as well as being able to respond to the response measures of other countries that have negative consequences for our country. Categorising responses as either mitigation or adaptation responses can obscure the real and potential positive combined impact of these responses. Thus, although this policy still retains the mitigation and adaptation categories for the sake of clarity, the policy also reflects a strategic approach referred to as “climate change resilient development”. For further clarity, the climate change response makes use of the following time-bound planning horizons: • Short-term – five years from date of publication of the policy. • Medium-term – twenty years from date of publication of the policy. • Long-term – a planning horizon that extends to 2050. 4.1 Overall Approach Climate change resilient development refers to all interventions – mitigation, adaptation or both – that contribute to a fair and effective global solution to the climate change challenge while simultaneously building and maintaining South Africa’s international competitiveness, its social, environmental and economic resilience to the adverse effects of global climate change, and any unintended consequences of global climate change response measures. In this regard, the policy develops a “win-win” strategic approach that is: • Needs-driven and customised – Employing a wide range of different types of adaptation and mitigation approaches, policies, measures, programmes, interventions and actions consistent with the principles outlined above, but in particular, that meet the special needs and circumstances of those most vulnerable as well as being specifically tailored to the potential, best available solutions and other relevant conditions related to the specific actor, organisation, sector or sub-sector concerned; • Developmental – Prioritising climate change responses that have both significant mitigation and adaptation benefits and that also have significant economic growth, job creation, public health, risk management and poverty alleviation benefits; • Transformational, empowering and participa­tory – Implementing policies and measures to address climate change at a “scale of economy” that enables and supports the required level of innovation, sector and skills development, finance and investment flows needed to reap the full benefit of a transition to a lower-carbon, efficient, job-creating, equitable and competitive economy. The transition will necessarily be supported and enabled by policies and measures to empower and promote the participation of all citizens through changing their behaviour to more sustainable lifestyles and livelihoods. This policy is therefore part of the broader social and economic transformation as envisaged by the New Growth Path (NGP) and is fundamentally underpinned by a major shift towards sustainable consumption and production patterns, which decouples growth and development from any negative impacts on the environment and society; • Dynamic and evidence-based – Recognising that this policy has not been developed in a vacuum and many sectors have already researched and have experience in implementing policies and measures to address the challenges of climate change. Therefore, this policy takes an approach of: -- Immediate implementation of Near-term Priority Flagship Programmes comprising of – оо Continued implementation of existing successful policies and measures with only policy alignment and integration intervention as required;
  • 15. 14 4. The South African Climate Change Response Strategy оо Scaled-up roll-out of those existing successful policies and measures, which have successfully completed a demonstration phase, where feasible; оо Implementation of proven “no-regret policies and measures” in the immediate and near-term (e.g. best available technologies and best practices), particularly those that are well researched or understood, have socio-economic developmental and job creation benefits, and have negative-cost, zero-cost or low-cost implications for the economy and society; -- Simultaneously, further researching, consulting on, developing and demonstrating the detail of additional policies and measures consistent with the provisions of this policy, for implementation in the short-, medium- and longer-term, as and when ready; and -- Rigorously monitoring and evaluating the effectiveness of implemented policies and measures with a view to improving efficiency through adjustments or discarding those that are ineffective; • Balanced and cost effective – Implementing a balanced approach to both climate change mitigation and adaptation responses in terms of cost-benefit, prioritisation, focus, action and resource allocation; and • Integrated and aligned – Providing for the integration of sector-related climate change responses into the relevant sector planning processes and their developmental policies and measures. Where cross-cutting climate change responses are called for, this policy provides for their inclusion in, and consideration by, the relevant National, Provincial and/or Local planning regime as well as coherent alignment with the relevant policies and legislation. 4.2 Strategic Priorities This White Paper sets out South Africa’s climate change response strategy to achieve the National Climate Change Response Objective in a manner consistent with the principles and approach outlined above and which is structured around the following strategic priorities: • Risk reduction and management – prioritise near-term adaptation interventions that address immediate and observed threats to the economy, ecosystem services and the health and well-being of South Africans while researching and developing short-, medium- and longer-term climate resilience, risk and vulnerability management policies and measures. • Mitigation actions with significant outcomes – prioritise cost effective and beneficial mitigation policies, measures and interventions that significantly contribute to the country’s deviation from the GHG emission “business as usual trajectory” as measured against a benchmark “peak, plateau and decline” GHG emission trajectory where GHG emissions peak between 2020 and 2025, plateau for approximately a decade and begin declining in absolute terms thereafter. • Sectoral responses – prioritise, in accordance with the provisions of this policy, the requirement for all key actors, organisations or participants in relevant sectors or sub-sectors to prepare, submit, implement, monitor and report the implementation of detailed climate change response strategies and action plans that clearly articulate their roles, responsibilities, policies, measures, and interventions or actions to contribute to the achievement of the National Climate Change Response Objective in a measurable way. • Policy and regulatory alignment – firstly, prioritise interventions already envisaged by national policies, legislation or strategies that have climate change co-benefits, particularly those that also contribute
  • 16. 15 4. The South African Climate Change Response Strategy towards the national priorities of job creation, poverty alleviation or have other positive socio-economic benefits. Secondly, review existing national policies, legislation or strategies, with a view to optimising and maximising the climate change co-benefits of their interventions. Thirdly, integrate into the relevant existing or new policies, legislation or strategies those climate change response interventions that stimulate new economic activities as well as those that improve the efficiency and competitive advantage of existing activities. • Integrated planning – prioritise the mainstreaming of climate change considerations and responses into all relevant sector, national, provincial and local planning regimes such as, but not limited to, the Industrial Policy Action Plan, Integrated Resource Plan for Electricity Generation, Provincial Growth and Development Plans, and Integrated Development Plans. • Informed decision-making and planning – prioritise research, systemic observation, knowledge generation, information management and early warning systems that increase our ability to measure and predict climate change and the implications of its adverse effects on the economy, society and the environment. • Technology research, development and innovation – prioritise cooperation and the promotion of research, investment in and/or acquisition of adaptation, lower-carbon and energy-efficient technologies, practices and processes for employment by existing or new sectors or sub-sectors. • Facilitated behaviour change – prioritise the use of incentives and disincentives, including regulatory, economic and fiscal measures, to promote behaviour change towards a lower-carbon society and economy. • Behaviour change through choice – prioritise education, training and public awareness programmes to build the general public’s awareness of climate change so as to empower all South Africans to make informed choices that contribute to an economy and society that is resilient to climate change. • Resource mobilisation – prioritise the development of comprehensive resource and investment mobilisation strategies, capacities, mechanisms or instruments that support and enable implementation of climate change responses at the scale required, including, but not limited to, public and private financial resources, incentives, non-market and market-based instruments, technical cooperation and partnership agreements, and technology transfers at domestic, sub-regional, regional, and international levels.
  • 17. 16 5. Adaptation 5. ADAPTATION 5.1 Overall approach All states in the Southern African sub-region face the challenges of rural and urban poverty, limited water or access to water resources, food insecurity, and other development challenges. Thus, although countries of the sub-region may have differing developmental priorities, they often face similar risks due to climate change and may also have similar adaptation needs. South Africa will therefore strive to develop climate change adaptation strategies based on risk and vulnerability reduction, in collaboration with its neighbours where appropriate, and seek to share resources, technology and learning to coordinate a regional response. A regional approach that achieves climate resilience will have significant socio-economic benefits for South Africa, including a smaller risk of unmanaged regional migration. A leading international assessment of the effects of climate change on the global economy, the Stern Review, estimates that damages from unmitigated climate change could range between 5% and 20% of global Gross Domestic Product (GDP) annually by 2100. In the absence of effective adaptation responses, such levels of damages would certainly threaten and even reverse many development gains made in South Africa. Future climate trends are uncertain and the uncertainty rises steeply over the longer-term. Objectives for adaptation must therefore be able to adjust to changing circumstances and time-frames. For this reason, South Africa needs to plan flexibly for a wide range of possible responses over the medium- to long-term. We also need focused monitoring and evaluation systems to update our knowledge of how rapidly the change is occurring and the effectiveness of adaptation responses. Section 12 contains more information about these monitoring and evaluation systems. A key feature of adaptation responses is that they have a much stronger local context than do mitigation responses and their benefits may appear much faster and are often more tangible, such as an improvement in local environmental quality, for instance. Effective adaptation responses can also potentially create many jobs, particularly “green jobs”, and could contribute significantly to sustainable development goals. Well planned adaptation responses can thus be effectively integrated with sustainable development policies. Effective planning and coordination of an integrated adaptation response will require: • Early warning and forecasting for disaster risk reduction. • Medium-term (decade-scale) climate forecasting to identify potential resource challenges well in advance. • Long-term climate projections that define the range of future climate conditions. These need to be reinforced by research, capacity development, and technology development, and to respond to the needs of disaster risk reduction in the short-term, and integrated resource and development planning in the medium- and long-term. Government departments have begun working on sectoral adaptation responses, and these include job creation and growth strategies, especially in the green economy, as well as the protection and support of vulnerable groups. As a first step in ensuring that appropriate adaptation responses are mainstreamed into sectoral plans, a sub-committee of the Intergovernmental Committee on Climate Change (IGCCC) will be established to perform climate risk analyses on all sectoral plans, informed by the various sectoral adaptation responses, within two years of the publication of this Policy, this process will result in – • The identification and prioritisation of key short- and medium-term adaptation interventions that must be addressed in sector plans; and • The identification of adaptation responses that require coordination between specific sectors and/ or departments. Using the results of this analysis, adaptation strategies will be integrated into sectoral plans, including: • The National Water Resource Strategy, as well as reconciliation strategies for particular catchments and water supply systems. • The Strategic Plan for South African Agriculture. • The National Biodiversity Strategy and Action Plan, as well as provincial biodiversity sector plans and local bioregional plans. • The Department of Health Strategic Plan. • The Comprehensive Plan for the Development of Sustainable Human Settlements. • National Framework for Disaster Risk Management
  • 18. 17 5. Adaptation In addition to a refinement of top-down approaches, developing more detailed bottom-up approaches informed by the responses of local communities and local government will deliver results with a higher degree of confidence than is currently possible. 5.2 Water South Africa is a water scarce country with a highly variable climate and has one of the lowest run-offs in the world – a situation that is likely to be significantly exacerbated by the effects of climate change. Uniquely, South Africa shares four of its major river systems with six neighbouring countries. These four shared catchments amount to approximately 60% of South Africa’s surface area and approximately 40% of the average total river flow. Based on current projections South Africa will exceed the limits of economically viable land-based water resources by 2050. The adequate supply of water for many areas can be sustained only if immediate actions are taken to stave off imminent shortages. The water sector must balance the allocation of limited water resources amongst major users (agriculture, domestic urban use and industry), whilst addressing the need to ensure fair access to water for all South Africa’s people as well as a sufficient ecological allocation to maintain the integrity of ecosystems and thereby the services they provide. Although Government has provided basic water services to an estimated additional nine million people since 1994, they are mostly in urban areas. In many rural areas, lack of reticulated water and sanitation means that people rely on generally poorly managed local resources such as ground water, springs and rivers that are vulnerable to pollution and drought. Poor communities who are dependent on natural water resources cannot control the quality of their water or store the water supply in bulk. While there is a degree of uncertainty as to the net effects of climate change on water availability, rainfall is expected to become more variable, with an increase of extreme events such as flooding and droughts resulting in a much more variable runoff regime. Downscaled climate modelling suggests that the western and interior parts of the country are likely to become drier, and the eastern parts of the country wetter. Increased rainfall intensity will exacerbate scouring in rivers and sedimentation in dams, potentially impacting on water supply and treatment infrastructure. Higher temperatures, combined with higher carbon dioxide levels, will contribute to increased growth of algae as well as faster evaporation rates negatively impacting water resources. Water availability is a key climate change-related vulnerability and negative impacts on the availability of water will be felt by people, ecosystems and the economy. As a result, climate change poses significant additional risks for water security, which in turn has knock-on effects on those sectors highly reliant on water such as agriculture, electricity generation as well as some mining and industrial activities. Thus, this set of vulnerabilities must be considered and integrated into both short- and medium-term water sector planning approaches. In the short term, the development of a climate change response for the water sector through the National Water Resource Strategy plays a key role in government’s Integrated Water Resource Planning process and will inform the ongoing maintenance of the water balance reconciliation strategies for water management areas that have recently been developed for water supply systems for up to 75% of the country’s population, and the areas which together generate well over 80% of the national GDP. In the medium to long term, the Water for Growth and Development Framework, which has a 2030 planning horizon, aims to balance the critical role of water in terms of both poverty alleviation (ensuring the constitutional right to a reliable and safe water supply) and economic development (be it for domestic, industry, mining, agricultural or forestry use). Water vulnerability and response must also be adequately factored into this framework document. A two-pronged approach will be followed in which, firstly, in the short-term, climate change is used as the catalyst for addressing urgent short comings in the water sector and implementing effective, efficient and sustainable water resources and services management measures. Secondly, a long-term strategic focus on planning, adaptation and the smart implementation of new concepts and proactive approaches to managing water resources. To this end, the key elements of the National Climate Change Response Policy for the water sector include: 5.2.1 Integrating climate change considerations in the short-, medium- and long-term water planning processes across relevant sectors such as agriculture, industry, economic development, health, science and technology.
  • 19. 18 5.2.2 Sustaining state-of-the-art, water-related research and capacity development in all aspects of climate change in order to ensure the availability of relevant high quality, complete and current data, and tools with which to analyse the data. 5.2.3 Ensuring that water adaptation measures are managed from a regional perspective given the trans-boundary nature of our major rivers. 5.2.4 Implementing best catchment and water management practices to ensure the greatest degree of water security and resource protection under changing climatic conditions and, in particular, investment in water conservation and water demand management. 5.2.5 Exploring new and unused resources, particularly groundwater, re-use of effluent, and desalination. 5.2.6 Reducing the vulnerability and enhancement of the resilience to water-related impacts of climate change in communities and sectors at greatest risk 5.2.7 Providing human, legal, regulatory, institutional, governance and financial resources and capacity to deal with the long-term effects of climate change 5.2.8 Undertaking focused monitoring and research in order to ensure the efficacy of water adaptation approaches over the long-term. 5.3 Agriculture and commercial forestry Climate change significantly impacts agriculture and commercial forestry and they have significant potential for adaptation. Globally, agriculture is a key contributor to climate change, being responsible for about 14% of all GHG emissions. In both the agriculture and commercial forestry sectors synergy and overlap exists between adaptation and mitigation measures, and climate-resilient sectoral plans have the potential to directly address the plight of those most impacted by climate change – the rural poor. Furthermore, in these sectors climate resilience addresses issues of strategic national importance: food security, water, health, and land reform. Agriculture is the largest consumer of water (through irrigation) and is vulnerable to changes in water availability, increased water pollution (particularly from toxic algal or bacterial blooms) and soil erosion from more intense rainfall events and increased evapotranspiration. Under-resourced, small-scale and subsistence farmers are particularly vulnerable to the impacts of climate change. At the same time, conventional, commercial input-intensive agriculture has a range of negative environmental, social and economic externalities, which increasingly render it an unsustainable model. However, commercial agriculture remains a significant contributor to GDP and employment. Its full contribution, with multipliers, comprises up to 12% of GDP and 30% of national employment. Crop failures can therefore have a significant economic impact. A climate-resilient agricultural response depends on the recognition that agriculture should provide not only food, but also a range of other environmental and socio-economic benefits. The appropriate use of small-scale labour-intensive agriculture techniques and models could reverse the present decrease in agricultural jobs; contribute to empowerment goals; promote food security; conserve soil quality and structure; and contribute to biodiversity. Modelling of climate change scenarios is vital to informing land-use planning decisions in agriculture that determine the mix of livestock and crop cultivation, as well as the types of crops that are likely to be commercially viable. Commercial forestry in the form of alien plantations reduces streamflow and so impacts scarce water resources. It also reduces biodiversity. However, plantations function as carbon sinks that reduce the amount of GHGs in the atmosphere. To build resilience to climate change, the priorities for agriculture and commercial forestry are to: 5.3.1 Integrate agriculture and forestry into climate-resilient rural development planning to address job creation, food security and livelihoods with a particular emphasis on building climate resilience through leveraging synergies between adaptation and mitigation. 5.3.2 Using the results of available risk and vulnerability studies, develop and update short-, medium- and long-term adaptation scenarios to identify climate-resilient land-uses. This will support the agricultural industry’s proactive efforts to exploit new agricultural opportunities, new areas and new crops and it will reduce the impacts of climate change on existing agricultural potential. 5.3.3 Invest in and improve research into water, nutrient and soil conservation technologies and techniques, climate-resistant crops and livestock, 5. Adaptation
  • 20. 19 as well as agricultural production, ownership, and financing models to promote the development of “climate-smart agriculture” that lowers agricultural emissions, is more resilient to climate changes, and boosts agricultural yields. 5.3.4 Use early warning systems to give timely warnings of adverse weather and possibly related pests and disease occurrence. This will also provide up-to-date information and decision support tools to assess the vulnerability of farmers and inform farm management decisions. 5.3.5 Invest in education and awareness programmes in rural areas and link these to agricultural extension activities to enable both subsistence and commercial producers to understand, respond and adapt to the challenges of climate change. 5.4 Health The South African health sector is one of the five key priorities of government. A significant proportion of South Africans, and in particular the poor, already have serious and complex health challenges compounded by poor living conditions. These include amongst the world’s highest rates of tuberculosis and HIV infection. In particular parts of the country, the coverage of vector-borne diseases like malaria, rift valley fever and schistosomiasis may spread due to climate change, requiring a concomitant expansion of public health initiatives to combat these diseases. The links between the environment, food security and the infectious profiles of communities and regions have been well established. Within this context, the extreme weather events and increased climate variability associated with climate change provides a number of significant compounding factors that negatively affect the health and resilience of vulnerable communities: • The negative impacts of climate change on the socio-economic standing of the most vulnerable communities, and the consequences in terms of food security and the nutritional status of individuals within these communities threatens to further undermine their resistance to diseases such as HIV/AIDS and tuberculosis. • The links between weather and disease are well established – for instance, studies have shown a strong association between extreme weather events such as droughts and flooding and the incidence of water borne diseases such as cholera. • Furthermore, direct physical temperature stresses pose particular risks for children, the elderly and socio-economically vulnerable communities. South African data from the past four decades indicates an increase in the number of hotter days and nights and therefore an increased risk of casualties from heat stress. • Women, as primary care-givers, are put under additional strain looking after sick and elderly household members whilst maintaining a household. This leaves them less time to earn a livelihood putting cyclical pressure on them as they often neglect their own health in prioritising the health of others. • In densely populated urban areas, air pollution resulting primarily from the burning of fossil fuels may have serious health effects. Whilst South Africa’s air quality is generally good, stagnant air episodes in cities can create extremely poor air quality conditions and there are indications that climate change may increase the number and intensity of such events. In response to these challenges, South Africa will integrate climate change considerations into health sector plans to: 5.4.1 Reduce the incidence of respiratory diseases and improve air quality through reducing ambient particulate matter, ozone, and sulphur dioxide concentrations by legislative and other measures to ensure full compliance with National Ambient Air Quality Standards by 2020. In this regard, the use of legislative and other measures that also have the co-benefit of reducing GHG emissions will be prioritised. Progress in this regard will be published on the South African Air Quality Information System (SAAQIS). 5.4.2 Recognising that the nutritional status of individuals is key to building resilience to environmental health threats, ensure that food security and sound nutritional policies form part of an integrated approach to health adaptation strategies. 5.4.3 Develop and roll-out public awareness campaigns on the health risks of high temperatures and appropriate responses including improved ventilation and 5. Adaptation
  • 21. 20 promotion of behaviours that minimise exposure to high temperatures, namely “avoidance behaviour”. 5.4.4 Design and implement “Heat-Health” action plans including plans in respect of emergency medical services, improved climate-sensitive disease surveillance and control, safe water and improved sanitation. 5.4.5 Strengthen information and knowledge of linkages between disease and climate change through research. 5.4.6 Develop a health data-capturing system that records data both at spatial and temporal scales and that ensures that information collected can be imported into multiple-risk systems such as the South African Risk and Vulnerability Atlas (SARVA). 5.4.7 Improve the bio-safety of the current malaria control strategy. Although the current strategy, which includes the use of the persistent organic pollutant, DDT, has proven effective in reducing the incidence of malaria, there are significant concerns about its long-term impacts on environmental and human health. 5.4.8 Strengthen the awareness programme on malaria and cholera outbreaks. 5.5 Biodiversity and ecosystems Climate change will compound the pressures on already stressed ecosystems that have resulted from the unsustainable use and inadequate management of many of South Africa’s ecosystems and so potentially reduce the quantity and quality of the services that ecosystems currently provide. These critical services underpin South Africa’s socio-economic activities. Stressed ecosystems will compromise one of the key responses available to the country to adapt to climate change: using ecosystem services to help society adapt to climate change, known as „ecosystem-based adaptation’. Although South Africa has a conceptual understanding of the possible impacts of climate change on many of its key biodiversity assets, a comprehensive and quantitative evaluation of various climate change, and climate change impact, scenarios has yet to be undertaken for all significant ecosystems, especially with respect to the services they provide. Notwithstanding the uncertainty alluded to above, projected climate change impacts on biodiversity assets are likely to include although are not limited to: • Roughly 30% of endemic terrestrial species in South Africa may be at an increasingly high risk of extinction by the latter half of this century if climate change is not mitigated. • Marine ecosystems and species are at risk from changes in water temperature, ocean acidification and from changes in ocean currents such as West Coast upwelling and Agulhas current strengthening. Change in South Africa’s marine and coastal environment is already being observed and this change has already had significant impacts on the fisheries sector and on the local economy of small-scale and subsistence fishing communities along the West Coast. • Changes in rainfall patterns and temperatures, and rising atmospheric carbon dioxide levels could shift the distribution of South African terrestrial biomes with many implications for species diversity, ecosystem processes such as wildfires, and critical ecosystem services such as water yield and grazing biomass. • Increasing frequency of extreme rainfall events will influence runoff quality and quantity in complex ways, significantly affecting the marine and estuarine environment. Reduced water flow will increase the salinity of estuaries, affecting the breeding grounds and nursery areas of many marine species. Coastal estuaries will also be vulnerable to long-term sea-level rise. • Rising atmospheric carbon dioxide has poorly known direct effects on ecosystems. It may be increasing the cover of shrubs and trees in Grassland and Savannah Biomes, with mixed effects on biodiversity and possible positive implications for carbon sequestration. • Additional stresses to biodiversity resulting from climate change include wildfire frequency (which appears to already show climate change-related increases in the Fynbos Biome), and the prevalence of invasive alien species. These stresses combined with reduced and fragmented habitats will further increase the vulnerability of biodiversity to climate change. In response to these challenges, South Africa will integrate climate change into the management of biodiversity and ecosystem services as follows: 5. Adaptation
  • 22. 21 5.5.1 Strengthen biodiversity management and research institutions so that they can monitor, assess and respond effectively to existing anthropogenic pressures together with the additional pressures that climate change presents. 5.5.2 Conserve, rehabilitate and restore natural systems that improve resilience to climate change impacts or that reduce impacts. For example, mangrove forests reduce storm surge impacts and riparian vegetation and wetland ecosystems reduce the potential impact of floods. Opportunities to conserve biodiversity and extend the conservation estate through the development of carbon off-set programmes will be actively developed, such as those presented by the preservation of Spekboom as part of the Eastern Cape Thicket Biome. 5.5.3 Prioritise impact assessments and adaptation planning that takes into account the full range of possible climate outcomes, in conjunction with plausible scenarios of other stresses. 5.5.4 Prioritise climate change research into marine and terrestrial biodiversity and ecosystem services, and institute effective monitoring to enhance the understanding and forecasting of critical future threats. Monitoring efforts at national and sub-national scale, supported by experimental studies that quantify future risks to biodiversity and that improve projections of impacts, will help to design and refine adaptation responses. 5.5.5 Enhance existing programmes to combat the spread of terrestrial and marine alien and invasive species, especially in cases where such infestations worsen the impacts of climate change. 5.5.6 Expand the protected area network (in line with the National Protected Area Expansion Strategy) where it improves climate change resilience, and manage threatened biomes, ecosystems, and species in ways that will minimise the risks of species extinction. A regulatory framework to support investment in conservation or land rehabilitation as a way of offsetting the environmental impacts of new property developments will be explored. 5.5.7 Encourage partnerships for effective management of areas not under formal protection, especially freshwater ecosystem priority areas, critical biodiversity areas, ecological support areas and threatened ecosystems. 5.5.8 In the medium-term, expand existing gene banks to conserve critically endangered species that show increasing vulnerability to climate change trends. 5.6 Human Settlements – Urban Settlements More than 60% of South Africa’s population live in urban areas, which cover only 1.5% of South Africa’s surface area. The average growth rate for urban areas is consistently higher than the population growth rate. Urban areas are functionally more efficient, with lower per capita costs of services and land requirements for human settlement, but urban areas consume more resources and have an impact far beyond their urban boundaries. Urban sprawl reduces biodiversity and it pollutes land, water and air. Informal settlements are vulnerable to environmental and health risks because dwellings are in areas prone to disasters and that lack basic services. Urban human settlements face the following climate change challenges: • Climate change may exacerbate the problems caused by poor urban management. For example, poor storm water drainage systems and urban-induced soil erosion result in flash flooding. Increased storm intensity due to climate change would exacerbate such problems. • Cities are particularly vulnerable to climate change because they are slow to adapt to changes in the environment and they have entrenched dependencies on specific delivery mechanisms for critical services. • The effective management of the interface between urban residents and their surrounding environment producing sustainable social-ecological systems needs to the addressed. Similarly the concept of climate resilience in the context of urban social-ecological systems needs to be further developed. • South Africa’s cities still reflect apartheid planning with the poorest communities tending to live far away from services and employment. Our cities are relatively spread out and these two factors contribute to increased transport emissions. 5. Adaptation
  • 23. 22 • Water demand in urban centres is growing rapidly, placing undue stress on water supply systems. Investment in waste water treatment works has not remained in line with the growth in demand and use. • Informal settlements are vulnerable to floods and fires, exacerbated by their location in flood- or ponding-prone areas and on sand dunes; inferior building materials; and inadequate road access for emergency vehicles. • Cities and dense urban settlements consume large amounts of energy. In response to these challenges, South Africa will: 5.6.1 Investigate how to leverage opportunities presented by urban densification to build climate-resilient urban infrastructure and promote behavioural change as part of urban planning and growth management. 5.6.2 In the implementation of low-cost housing, ensure access to affordable lower-carbon public transport systems, incorporate thermal efficiency into designs and use climate-resilient technologies. 5.6.3 Develop effective information, monitoring and assessment tools to evaluate the resilience of our cities and towns to climate change and assist urban planners in identifying priorities for scaling-up climate change responses. Strengthen and enhance decision support tools and systems such as the Toolkit for Integrated Planning and develop geographic information systems that include, but not limited to, asset management components for public infrastructure. 5.6.4 Encourage and develop water-sensitive urban design to capture water in the urban landscape and to minimise pollution, erosion and disturbance. Urban infrastructure planning must account for water supply constraints and impacts of extreme weather-related events. 5.6.5 Acknowledging the current modelling limitations, encourage and support the appropriate down-scaling of climate models to provincial and, where possible, metropolitan and district levels to provide climate information at a scale that can be integrated into medium- and long-term spatial development plans and information systems. 5.6.6 Ensure that land-use zoning regulations are enforced and that urban land-use planning considers the impacts of climate change and the need to sustain ecosystem services when considering settlements and infrastructure development proposals. 5.7 Human Settlements – Rural Settlements Over nineteen million, or 39%, of South Africans live in rural areas. Eighty percent of rural areas are commercial farming areas with low population densities, and 20% are former “homelands” where the agricultural sector has been undermined, settlements are often densely populated, and people are poor and largely reliant on urban remittances and social welfare for their livelihoods. Small-scale and homestead food production are practiced in rural areas on both high potential and marginal agricultural land, with roughly 1.3 million small-scale farm units. Seventy percent of the country’s poorest households live on small-scale farms and few of them produce enough food to feed themselves throughout the year. Rural human settlements face the following climate change challenges: • Small-scale and subsistence food production is particularly vulnerable to climate variability, relying mostly on dryland food production with limited capital to invest in soil fertilisation, seed and weed, pest and disease control. • Climate change, in particular changes in production systems and climate change-related damage and crop failures, is likely to negatively affect employment in rural areas. • Spatial planning needs to address historical inequalities in land distribution without compromising the ability of the agricultural sector to contribute to food security. • Rural communities with the highest dependence on natural water sources are in KwaZulu-Natal, the Eastern Cape and Limpopo. The former two will probably experience more flooding and water contamination. In addition to these, Limpopo will probably experience more droughts. These are areas with some of the poorest communities and under-resourced municipalities with limited capacity and skills to adapt to changing conditions. 5. Adaptation
  • 24. 23 • Rural areas are under-represented in the climate monitoring network despite the fact that they are likely to be the soonest and most greatly negatively affected by climate change. In response to these challenges, South Africa will: 5.7.1 Educate subsistence and small-scale farmers on the potential risks of climate change, and support them to develop adaptation strategies with on-farm demonstration and experimentation. Adaptation strategies will include conservation agriculture practices including water harvesting and crop rotation, and will prioritise indigenous knowledge and local adaptive responses. 5.7.2 Empower local communities, particularly women who are often primary producers, in the process of designing and implementing adaptation strategies. 5.7.3 Design and implement economic and livelihood diversification programmes in rural areas. 5.7.4 Within the country’s research and development system, prioritise technologies for climate change adaptation within rural areas, including low water-use irrigation systems, improved roll-out of rainwater harvesting strategies, and drought-resistant seed varieties. 5.7.5 Target adaptation programmes to build resilience among the most vulnerable sections of the rural population and ensure that disaster management architecture includes the provision of safety nets for rural communities most vulnerable to the impacts of climate change. This includes enhancing their knowledge of sustainable environmental conditions and optimising the ecosystem services that these provide. 5.8 Human Settlements – Coastal Settlements Coastal human settlements are the most vulnerable to an increase in sea-level rise due to climate change. Coastal areas provide habitation, work, and recreation to approximately 40% of the South African people. A significant proportion of South Africa’s metropolitan areas, including numerous towns and smaller settlements, are situated along the coastline. These areas also host high volumes of local and international tourists annually. A network of infrastructural installations and communication links along the coast, built by public and private enterprises, service the needs of the inhabitants, tourists and other entities in the coastal zone. The attraction of lifestyle and development opportunities in coastal area is leading to significant migration to the coast, with additional settlements and services in areas that are not immune to the impacts of climate change. The 3,650 km South African coastline is generally exposed to moderate to strong wave action and provides little natural shelter to storms from the sea. With climate change expected to increase both the frequency and intensity of storms, the South African coastline will become increasingly vulnerable to storm surges, coastal erosion, sea-level rise and extreme weather events. A continual assessment of coastal defences, particularly at harbours, estuaries and lagoons, and along low-lying coastal land, will be needed to reduce damage in high risk areas. In addition to the climate change impacts listed for urban and rural areas above, further impacts for coastal areas include: • Flooding and coastal erosion that result in the loss of coastal infrastructure (including breakwaters, roads and public amenities), habitat and ecosystem goods and services. Predicted rises in sea level may further exacerbate these impacts. • Increased frequency and intensity of coastal storms, which includes seasonal cyclone activity on the east coast. Estuaries are particularly vulnerable. Increased coastal development and inappropriate land and catchment management will exacerbate these impacts. In response to these challenges, South Africa will: 5.8.1 Ensure that national, provincial and municipal coastal management plans incorporate relevant climate information and geographic information systems and adopt a risk-based approach to planning that anticipates the consequences of the continued migration of communities into high risk coastal areas. 5.8.2 Take account of the potential impact of sea-level rise and intense weather events, such as storm surges, on infrastructure development and investment in coastal areas, particularly in terms of the location of the high-water mark and coastal set-back lines 5. Adaptation
  • 25. 24 that demarcate the areas in which development is prohibited or controlled. Government will review and amend the legislation to deal with adjustments of coastal set-back lines that affect the status of existing public and private infrastructure. 5.8.3 Protect and rehabilitate natural systems that act as important coastal defences, such as mangrove swamps, offshore reefs and coastal dunes. 5.8.4 Develop Disaster Risk Management plans that take into account the potential consequences of climate change along the coast, particularly the increased incidence of extreme weather events. 5.8.5 Support ongoing research to determine the impacts of climate change on artisanal fishing communities and livelihoods in coastal areas that are directly connected to coastal and marine resources and identify appropriate responses. 5.9 Disaster risk reduction and management Disaster risk reduction and management are short-term adaptations to climate change because both address vulnerability to climate change-related impacts. Resilience to climate change-related extreme events, such as heat waves, floods, droughts, wildfires and storm surges, will be the basis for South Africa’s future approach to disaster management. Extreme weather events often cross country borders and impact on the region as a whole. As such a region-wide approach to disaster management is often needed. South Africa’s Disaster Management Act sets out a comprehensive approach to disaster management and it identifies the roles and responsibilities of key institutions and disaster management agencies. In addition, the Act establishes a National Disaster Management Centre whose role is to address disaster prevention, coordinate disaster management agencies and capacity across government and to ensure that critical information is disseminated speedily. Climate change will require more effective disaster management to deal with the increased number of extreme weather events. The increase in extreme events will strain public resources due to the need to declare and support disaster areas in an immediate crisis as well as during long-term recovery. In response to these challenges, South Africa will: 5.9.1 Continue to develop and improve its early warning systems for weather and climate (especially severe weather events) and pest infestation events and to ensure that these warnings reach potentially affected populations timeously. To this end, we will investigate and implement plans to use the mass media and appropriate information and communication technologies to alert vulnerable populations. 5.9.2 Seek to collaborate with our neighbouring states to share early warning systems with regional applications and benefits. 5.9.3 Continue to promote the development of Risk and Vulnerability Service Centres at universities, which will, in turn, support resource-constrained municipalities. 5.9.4 Facilitate increased use of seasonal climate forecasts among key stakeholders such as those in the water and agricultural sectors. 5.9.5 Maintain, update and enhance the SARVA as a tool that provinces and municipalities may use to inform their climate change adaptation planning. 5.9.6 Collaborate with social networks such as community organisations, non-governmental organisations (NGOs), women and farmers’ organisations, and the Adaptation Network to help raise awareness and to transfer technology and build capacity. 5.9.7 Develop mechanisms for the poor to recover after disasters, including micro-insurance. 5. Adaptation
  • 26. 25 6. Mitigation 6.1 Overall approach to mitigation South Africa’s approach to mitigation is informed by two contexts: first, its contribution as a responsible global citizen to the international effort to curb global emissions; and second, its successful management of the development and poverty eradication challenges it faces. The National Climate Change Response is intended to promote adaptation and mitigation measures that will make development more sustainable, both in socio-economic and environmental terms. South Africa recognises that stabilisation of GHG concentrations in the atmosphere at a level that prevents dangerous anthropogenic interference with the climate system will require effective international co-operation. We therefore regard mitigation as a national priority and are committed to actively engaging in international negotiations under the UNFCCC and its Kyoto Protocol, which South Africa has ratified. As a responsible global citizen and as a global citizen with moral as well as legal obligations under the UNFCCC and its Kyoto Protocol, South Africa is committed to contributing its fair share to global GHG mitigation efforts in order to keep the temperature increase well below 2°C. In this regard, on 6 December 2009, the President announced that South Africa will implement mitigation actions that will collectively result in a 34% and a 42% deviation below its „Business As Usual’ emissions growth trajectory by 2020 and 2025 respectively. In accordance with Article 4.7 of the UNFCCC, the extent to which this outcome can be achieved depends on the extent to which developed countries meet their commitment to provide financial, capacity-building, technology development and technology transfer support to developing countries. With financial, technology and capacity-building support, this level of effort will enable South Africa’s GHG emissions to peak between 2020 and 2025, plateau for approximately a decade and decline in absolute terms thereafter. To this end, the key elements in the overall approach to mitigation include: 6.1.1 Setting the performance benchmark – Using the National GHG Emissions Trajectory Range, against which the collective outcome of all mitigation actions will be measured. Section 6.4 contains more information about the emissions trajectory. 6.1.2 Identifying desired sectoral mitigation contribut­ions – Defining desired emission reduction outcomes for each sector and sub-sector of the economy within two years of the publication of this policy-based on an in-depth assessment of the mitigation potential, best available mitigation options, science, evidence and a full assessment of the costs and benefits. Where appropriate, these desired emission reduction outcomes will be cascaded to individual company or entity level; 6.1.3 Defining Carbon Budgets for significant GHG emitting sectors and/or sub-sectors – Adopting a carbon budget approach to provide for flexibility and least-cost mechanisms for companies in relevant sectors and/or sub-sectors. The initial Carbon Budgets for significant GHG emitting sectors and/or sub-sectors will be drawn up and adopted within two years of the publication of this policy and revised as required based on monitoring and evaluation results, technological advances or new science, evidence and information. A mechanism and process to translate the Carbon Budgets for each relevant sector and/or sub-sector into company level desired emission reduction outcomes will be developed and implemented within three years of the publication of this policy for companies above a minimum emissions threshold. Section 6.5 contains more information about the carbon budget approach. 6.1.4 Mitigation Plans – Requiring companies and economic sectors or sub-sectors for whom desired emission reduction outcomes have been established to prepare and submit mitigation plans that set out how they intend to achieve the desired emission reduction outcomes. 6.1.5 The use of different types of mitigation approaches, policies, measures and actions – Developing and implementing a wide range and mix of different types of mitigation approaches, policies, measures and actions that optimise the mitigation outcomes as well as job creation and other sustainable developmental benefits. This optimal mix of mitigation actions will be developed to achieve the defined desired emission reduction outcomes for each sector and sub-sector of the economy by ensuring that actions are specifically tailored to the best available solutions and other relevant conditions related to the specific sector, sub-sector or organisation concerned; 6. MITIGATION
  • 27. 26 6.1.6 Using the market – Deploying a range of economic instruments to support the system of desired emissions reduction outcomes, including the appropriate pricing of carbon and economic incentives, as well as the possible use of emissions offset or emission reduction trading mechanisms for those relevant sectors, sub-sectors, companies or entities where a carbon budget approach has been selected. 6.1.7 Monitoring and evaluation – Establishing a national system of data collection to provide detailed, complete, accurate and up-to-date emissions data in the form of a Greenhouse Gas Inventory and a Monitoring and Evaluation System to support the analysis of the impact of mitigation measures. Section 6.7 contains more information about emissions data collection and section 12 expands on the proposed Climate Change Response Monitoring and Evaluation System. 6.2 South Africa’s emissions South Africa has relatively high emissions for a developing country, measured either per capita or by GHG intensity (emissions per unit of GDP). By any measure, South Africa is a significant emitter of GHGs. The energy intensity of the South African economy, largely due to the significance of mining and minerals processing in the economy and our coal-intensive energy system, has resulted in an emissions profile that differs substantially from that of other developing countries at a similar stage of development as measured by the Human Development Index. Since coal is the most emissions-intensive energy carrier, South Africas economy is very emissions-intensive. Furthermore, emissions from land-use change (primarily deforestation) contribute a significantly smaller share to our emission profile than for many other developing countries. In 2000, average energy use emissions for developing countries constituted 49% of total emissions, whereas South Africas energy use emissions constituted just under 80% of total emissions. Even in some fast-developing countries with a similar reliance on coal for energy, energy use emissions are lower than South Africa. In terms of South Africas latest Greenhouse Gas Inventory (base year 2000), the majority of South Africas energy emissions arose from electricity generation, which constituted around half of South Africa’s energy emissions and just under 40% of total emissions in 2000. Transportation and energy used in industry contributed just under 10% each of total emissions and industrial process emissions constituted around 14% of total emissions. Emissions from agriculture and land-use change in South Africa constitute only around 5% of emissions, compared to an average of 44% in developing countries as a whole. 6.3 Mitigation potential Currently available analyses indicate that, unchecked by climate mitigation action, South Africa’s emissions could grow rapidly by as much as fourfold by 2050. The majority of South Africa’s emissions arise from energy supply (electricity and liquid fuels) and use (mining, industry and transport), and mitigation actions with the largest emission reduction potential focus on these areas. The cost of mitigation actions varies significantly, and published analyses of these costs is likely to require further refinement, especially at sectoral, sub-sectoral and individual organisation levels. Unlike in other developing countries, South Africa has limited opportunities to cut emissions by tackling deforestation, a sector in which near-term emission reductions are more easily achieved through regulatory policies and enforcement type measures and are therefore relatively inexpensive. While opportunities for mitigation of emissions from non-energy sources do exist, large mitigation contributions will have to come from reduced emissions from energy generation and use. The main opportunities for mitigation consist of energy efficiency, demand management and moving to a less emissions-intensive energy mix, with consequent economic benefits of improved efficiency and competitiveness as well as incentivising economic growth in sectors with lower energy intensities. Policy decisions on new infrastructure investments must consider climate change impacts to avoid the lock-in of emissions-intensive technologies into the future. However, in the short-term, due to the stock and stage in the economic lifecycle of existing infrastructure and plant, the most promising mitigation options are primarily energy efficiency and demand side management, coupled with increasing investment in a renewable energy programme in the electricity sector. In addition, in the short term, the emergence of bio-fuels and a suite of non-energy mitigation options, such as afforestation, are also important. 6. Mitigation

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