Archive: Air pollution


Explainer An electric vehicle (EV) charging on a street

Lower running and maintenance costs mean EV ownership can prove an excellent investment, particularly as more affordable models become available.

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Air pollution is the world’s most critical environmental health risk. South Africa’s use of fossil fuels produces hundreds of millions of tonnes of emissions annually.

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“There are no jobs on a dead planet!” goes the old slogan. Environmental degradation is a serious risk to economic growth.

Explainer Electricity pylons against landscape

Coal’s dominance in South Africa’s electricity mix – totalling 90 per cent of electricity generation – means the rising price of coal is making bills more expensive.

Explainer Lorry body containing compressed methane

Hydrogen is a fuel source that is a possible alternative to fossil fuels. It can be used in fuel cells and to create heat, and its only by-product is water, meaning it does not release any greenhouse gases when burned.

Explainer Wind turbines in South Africa

A wind turbine works by harnessing the power of the wind to create wind energy. The wind turns large blades around a rotor. This, in turn, powers a generator, which creates electricity.

Explainer Yellow digger mining coal in large open cast coal mine

South Africa is a coal-dependent country. Coal makes up 74 per cent of the country’s total electricity supply. In the first quarter of 2021, 81.8 per cent of South Africa’s electricity came from coal.

Explainer Natural gas pipelines and gas 'flaring' flame emitting black smoke

Since 2006, the amount of gas in the atmosphere has increased, according to NASA. The oil and gas industry has caused the majority of methane gas emissions since 2006, NASA says.

Explainer Close up of a liquefied natural gas carrier on water

Currently, South Africa is neither a large exporter nor importer of LNG. However, there are now plans in the country to develop this fossil fuel industry.