Cape Town - Amid the outcry for proactive climate change mitigation and adaptation efforts, particularly in the agriculture industry, the portfolio committee on environment, forestry and fisheries opened comments for the Climate Change Bill this week.
The bill seeks to enable the development of an effective climate change response and a long-term, just transition to a low-carbon and climate-resilient economy and society for South Africa.
It stated that anthropogenic climate change represented an urgent threat to human societies and the planet, and therefore it required an effective, progressive and incremental response especially as South Africa was particularly vulnerable to its impact.
The bill detailed the need for urgent and appropriate adaptation responses, and required the minister of Environment, Forestry and Fisheries to implement an effective nationally determined climate change response that encompassed mitigation and adaptation actions that represented the country’s fair contribution to the global climate change response.
Western Cape Department of Environmental Affairs and Development Planning (DEA and DP) spokesperson Rudolf van Jaarsveldt said officials would be commenting during this round of consultation on the Climate Change Bill.
“As a Western Cape Government, we have recently concluded a co-created Climate Change Response Strategy: Vision 2050, expressing ambition and rooted in building partnerships across all stakeholders critical to the delivery of the implementation framework,” Van Jaarsveldt said.
Van Jaarsveldt said they were also committed to achieving Net Zero by 2050 and various government teams were working to align concerns regarding energy security with the opportunities that a transition to a low-carbon energy future could bring.
When it came to climate change, DEA and DP MEC Anton Bredell said society and all its parts needed to transform, and this transformation required a level of urgency similar to the Covid-19 response.