Hosted by Dr Michelle Audouin,CSIR Senior Researcher
Global change drivers such as population growth, climate change, and urbanisation, are putting ever-increasing pressure on natural resources. It is critical that resource management balances the growing socio-economic needs with the sustainability of the natural resource base, as well as environmental health considerations. Water scarcity, for instance, remains a critical issue, potentially restricting the development options for South Africa. Additional drivers, such as increasing demand for water and failing public services, are resulting in increased competition for this resource. Covid-19 has further underlined the need for clean water and adequate sanitation. There are many options for addressing environmental and water-related challenges such as, for example, effectively protecting South Africa’s Strategic Water Source Areas – the 10% of the land that supplies 50% of the surface water and the strategic groundwater areas. The proper management, and restoration where necessary, of ecological infrastructure is vital for securing and protecting these water resources in the face of development pressures and climate change. The CSIR brings together a panel – inclusive of stakeholders from both the private and public sectors – to discuss the role of ecological infrastructure in addressing environmental challenges in support of sustainable development.
Dr Michelle Audouin, CSIR Senior Researcher (Host). Ms Marlene Laros, Director: Biodiversity and Coastal Management, Western Cape Government, Environmental Affairs and Development Planning; Ms Carla Hudson Programme Manager: Mine Water Coordinating Body; Ms Kerri Savin, Sustainability Manager, Nedbank; Dr Ilse Kotzee, CSIR Researcher; Dr Lindie Smith-Adao, CSIR Senior Researcher; Dr David le Maitre, CSIR Principal Researcher