Your weekly green news round-up.
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Dear <<First Name>>

Evidence is mounting that our civilisation is not responding fast enough to climate change. We need to sharpen our pens and become much more urgent in our actions. We know that a number of climate change tipping points have been passed and that they can start interacting with each other any time, which spells nothing good for humanity, let alone the other species.

I have been following the work of Prof Guy McPherson, who is currently traveling Europe to share the evidence we don’t really want to see. It is no good ignoring the difficult truths. This planet now demands people with the courage to be brave and responsive. View his talk yesterday in Konstanz, Germany here.

Climate action is required from every intelligent person. We are part of African Climate Reality, who is gathering a special coalition of all environmental organisations to join hands for this most important work. Please join the Climate Coalition by emailing This Coalition is focused on ensuring our government, and President Zuma, honours his Copenhagen commitment at COP21 in Paris to SA running on  40% renewable energy by 2030.

COP21 will be focusing on 8 countries that have the biggest impact on greenhouse gasses – and South Africa is one, due to our very high dependency on fossil fuels. Of course our continent is also the most vulnerable in terms of consequences of climate change. So we are sitting in a very significant position to play a crucial role.

In June the world will once again celebrate Live Earth ( concerts. In our country this happens in Durban. Their aim is to reach 100 million to 100 billion signatures for a simple petition for Climate Action – to be presented at COP21 in Paris. Everyone can organise viewing parties in your area.

From an environmental point of view xenophobia seems to stem from a scramble for resources, and to my mind an escalation of the ‘separations sickness,’ which landed this planet in trouble in the first place. Once we got disconnected from Nature and the ecology that supports us, that was when we lost the plot. Assuming our separation, we also assumed our superiority and dominance … and the rest is history. Nothing levels the playing field as beautifully as our environmental inter-dependence. We need to look after that which looks after us. We need each other – across races and borders and continents. We can heal, but only if we can truly embrace the terminal nature of our dis-ease.

And so arrives Earth Day tomorrow, 45 years after it first started in 1970. Have we listened? What is it going to take?

As always we honour those who care enough to DO life and business differently. Not able to share all stories via the website, please read more on Facebook. I don my hat this week also to 2 beautiful events we attended – the work of the Watershed Project, who showed documentaries in the mist on the lush fields of the Green Point Urban Park to create awareness of the real-time battle for life once the water dries up. See more about their work here.

And then lastly the moving tribute to our threatened rhinos at the Rhino Disharmony concert with Zolani Mahola of Freshlyground  and concert pianist and composer, Tian Jiang (photographed above) in an artistic medley of music, trapeze artistry, painting and sculpture at the Landbank in Cape Town. What an eerie moment it was when this passionate Chinese concert pianist publicly apologised on behalf of the Chinese nation for their contribution towards the hastening extinction of this ancient species, followed by an apology on behalf of all of mankind. Piano and indigenous voice filled the old banking hall with the song of our vulnerable earth, evoking the ancestors who honoured the land. Finally, we reach across continents to lament our fragile time. Read more about this worthy initiative here.

Enjoy the read and please don’t keep this to yourself. Help spread the message.

With love from
Elma and the team

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HOW TO SERIES PART 1: How to go off the grid with solar

How do we take our environmental footprints into our own hands and radically reduce our negative impact on the planet we hope to leave behind to our children in a liveable state?

Concerns abound over amended Fuleni coal mine application


Is it a good idea to develop an anthracite coal mine right on the boundary of the world-renowned Hluhluwe-iMfolozi Park?

Rural Acornhoek kids taught to love their environment


Children who have never seen wildlife struggle to draw pictures of them. This is in a rural township wedged between the affluent tourist regions of the Greater Kruger and the Blyde River Canyon.

SA top of world clean energy investment!


For once SA is tops in the world with the rapid rise in our country’s clean energy investment.

Clean-up crews help keep Two Oceans world’s most beautiful race


All the waste from the recent Two Oceans marathon was quickly collected, sorted into categories and sent for recycling.

How oil spills can literally break fish hearts


There is a new plight to hit our shores – that of the baby fish altered for life by the oil spills off the Gulf of Mexico.

Arctic sea ice reaches lowest annual maximum on record


This year’s maximum Arctic sea ice extent was the lowest in satellite record and occurred 15 days earlier than the average date for the period from 1981 to 2010, reported NASA and NSIDC.

First three months of 2015 were warmest on record


March this year was the third hottest month in global climate records, according to reports from NASA GISS.

You can heal your life and be happy!

Danish integrative medical doctor Søren Ventegodt is heading our way to run workshops in quality of life and happiness in Cape Town and Johannesburg this May.

Bringing eco education to the leaders of tomorrow


Check out the exciting Youth Environmental School (YES) programme, which aims to conserve, protect, nurture and care for our environment through environmental education.

Giant news organisation to divest from fossil fuels


The owners of one of the world’s most respected and influential news organisations have begun the process of divesting themselves of fossil fuels.

New reserve possible game-changer for the Amazon


An ambitious project is underway to create the largest environmental reserve in the world, protecting 135 million hectares of Amazon forest.


Confessions of communicating scientist Prof Nox Makunga


Plant biotechnology expert Prof Nox Makunga spoke to a group of 60+ scientists and science communicators at Stellenbosch University last month.


Biotech company employed entire department to “discredit” scientists


Dare to publish a scientific study against Big Biotech, and Monsanto will defame and discredit you.

100 Mayors adopt Seoul Declaration for sustainable cities


Over 100 Mayors and elected leaders have adopted the “Seoul Declaration,” one of the major outcomes of the ICLEI World Congress 2015 – the biggest gathering of urban sustainability leaders worldwide.

O + H2 = the greatest treasure


The greatest treasure on this planet is not actually gold, diamonds or a rare painting by Picasso. Our greatest wealth and our most prized possession is… water.

Join the River Rehab Revolution


The Green Beings River Rehab initiative has kicked up a notch this year and all nature-loving residents are invited to join in on the fun.


Solving the Eskom problem and poverty simultaneously


Instead of paying 1 trillion rand to foreign companies to build nuclear power stations, why don't we spend it on equipping the very poorest households in SA with locally designed and built rooftop photovoltaic panels, solar geysers and wind generators?


New Joburg plant to recycle bottles into bottles


A state of the art bottle-to-bottle recycling plant is coming to Wadeville, Johannesburg to turn soft drink, bottled water and other forms of PET packing into bottles again.

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