Stellenbosch University to launch new School for Climate Studies
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STELLENBOSCH University (SU) has launched a new School for Climate Studies, which will be officially open in June 2021.
The inception of the school follows the university’s determination to fight against climate change.
“The school will create transdisciplinary capacity to combine the climate-related knowledge systems of SU’s faculties, the public sector’s climate policies and initiatives, the private sector’s climate redress and innovation capacities and the social impact mission of SU in both academic and applied ways – all in support of the transition to a climate-resilient society and a low-carbon economy,” the university’s statement said.
A part of of its core responsibilities is to conduct research, co-ordinate curriculum development and facilitate postgraduate training, advice and consultancy as well as technology transfer in the multiple fields of climate studies
The university’s visions for the school to be a world-class institution for interdisciplinary and transdisciplinary climate and related studies in and for Africa. It also wishes to see research partnerships with other entities, both nationally and internationally.
SU’s deputy vice-chancellor: Research, Innovation and Postgraduate Studies, Professor Eugene Cloete said the school would be the first of its kind in South Africa.
He added: “South Africa is a major contributor to greenhouse gases on the African continent. It has become essential to move towards a greener economy. Stellenbosch University has the expertise to lead the way through research and innovation, and has already done cutting-edge research on, for instance, renewable energy. Stellenbosch is also leading the field in the move towards a carbon-neutral university.”
Cloete said SU was also in the process of developing a Master’s degree in climate studies to build high-level capacity in this field.
“South Africa and the African continent desperately need human capacity to deal with climate change, from policy-making level in government to the implementation of practical solutions to mitigate climate change. The move towards a green economy will create many new careers in engineering, manufacturing, agriculture, renewable energy, and research into the fundamental drivers of climate change. Virtually every industry will be affected.”