Call for Response: National Climate White Paper

Call for Response: National Climate White Paper


Climate change is a major potential threat to sustainable growth and development in South Africa and to the achievement of the Millennium Development Goals. The potential impacts of climate change, in terms of diminished natural resources, increased flooding and drought, reduced agricultural production, worsening food insecurity and spreading diseases, are already evident in our country, with many of our poor communities with the fewest choices and least access to resources bearing the full brunt of these challenges. The potential risks and challenges of climate change for the country and future generations are potentially colossal; needing urgent mitigation and adaptation measures. The need for all South Africans to have a shared understanding of climate change and the mechanisms for transforming its threats into opportunities for sustainable development cannot be over-emphasised, particularly as South Africa has the unique opportunity to host the 17th Conference of the Parties (COP17) to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), in November /December 2011, in Durban.

The Portfolio Committee on Water and Environmental Affairs of the Parliament of the Republic of South Africa held public hearings, in March 2011, on the National Climate Change Response Green Paper 2010 that was released for written comment by Ms. Ednah Molewa MP, the Minister of Water and Environmental Affairs, in Government Gazette 33801 Notice 1083 of 2010, dated 25 November 2010.  The substantive insights offered at these hearings provided departmental officials an opportunity to incorporate substantial changes to the Green Paper and formulate an informed and improved White Paper.

Invitation to Public Hearings
The Portfolio Committee invites all interested stakeholders to submit written comments on the National Climate Change Response White Paper by not later than 16h00, on 20 October 2011. Public hearings are targeted for October/November 2011 and will probably commence around 25 October to 11 November 2011, with the Departmental briefings taking place on 18 and 19 October 2011.

Kindly note that the Portfolio Committee on Water and Environmental Affairs retains the right to regulate its own proceedings, including the right to decide whether to allow oral representations in respect of any submission, and the format, procedure and duration of any oral representation.

For professional assistance with facilitating submissions and participation in the public hearings, kindly please contact ETHICORE Parliamentary on the details provided.

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