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26 March 2018 Photo Pixabay
Back to the drawing board to save water
We’ve managed to damage nature’s ‘filter’ with air, ocean, and soil pollution, and by destroying wetlands.

Dr Cindé Greyling, a University of the Free State (UFS) DiMTEC (Disaster Management Training and Education Centre for Africa) alumni, studied drought mitigation with a strong focus on communicating important water-saving information. 

Can we run out of water?
Yes, and no, says Dr Greyling. “To our knowledge, water is not ‘leaking’ through our atmosphere. We have what we have, but that doesn’t mean we will have enough clean, fresh water forever. Nature has a magnificent way of purifying water through the water cycle. We, on the other hand, must use a lot of money and energy to purify water. Also, we’ve managed to damage nature’s ‘filter’ with air, ocean, and soil pollution, and by destroying wetlands. The other problem is a simple supply and demand scenario. More people will need more water, but not only that, population growth calls for industry development and increased food supplies – all of which require more water.”    

A war over water
Besides some Hollywood impressions, it is difficult to imagine a war over water, but it is possible. “Some experts are convinced that we are heading there, and others claim that such tensions already exist. Personally, I don’t favour these kinds of shock tactics (or truths) – social research has shown us that it rarely leads to behavioural changes. We can learn a lot from what was has been done in Cape Town. Although we all think people were bombarded with ‘Day-Zero’-scares, they were actually encouraged to adapt their behaviour with a communication campaign that hardly ever used the term ‘Day-Zero’. This approach mobilised citizens to reach record lows of water usage.” 

Adapt a new normal
Dr Greyling encourages the “new normal” set in motion by Capetonians. “Water consciousness is needed, even when the rain comes again. We’ve taken water for granted for too long. As consumers, we have the power to turn this situation around – drop for drop. Be aware about the amount of water you use, how you use it, and for what. Keep in mind that any wastage and pollution (of ‘dry’ things) also wastes and pollutes water. Generally, we need to behave better regarding consumption.”  

News Archive

Islam. Boko Haram. Terrorism. Prof Hussein Solomon offers insight.
2014-09-04

 

 Photo: en.wikipedia.org

Prof Hussein Solomon introduction: video

When it comes to politics, there are lots of negative talk, but without any action or solutions.

However, with Prof Hussein Solomon, Senior Professor at the UFS’s Department of Political Science, there is not a lot of talk without solutions, but great activity regarding research work published on Islam, the Middle East, Boko Haram and environmental issues in Africa.

Prof Solomon’s most recently published article, Five Lessons Learned from Ejecting Islamists in Mali, was published in the Research on Islam and Muslims in Africa (RIMA) Policy Papers on 1 September 2014.
(https://muslimsinafrica.wordpress.com/2014/09/01/five-lessons-learned-from-ejecting-islamists-in-mali-professor-hussein-solomon/ ).

“The terrorist threat is mounting with each passing day in Africa with Islamist terror groups exploiting the ungoverned spaces, the availability of weapons, porous borders, an incompetent security apparatus and corruption in the political establishment,” Prof Solomon writes in this paper.

“It is therefore important, to explore cases where attempts have been made to dislodge the Islamists with a view to learn lessons so that future interventions do not repeat the failures of the past. This paper explores the intervention and lessons which could be learned from French and Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) attempts to oust Islamists in northern Mali in 2013.”

Prof Solomon holds a DLitt et Phil (Political Science) from the University of South Africa (UNISA). In 2011, he was Visiting Professor at the Osaka School for International Public Policy (OSIPP). In 2007 and 2010 he was Visiting Professor at the Global Collaboration Centre at Osaka University in Japan and in 2008 he was Nelson Mandela Chair of African Studies at Jawahrlal Nehru University in New Delhi, India. In 1994, he was Senior Visiting Fellow at the Department of War Studies, King’s College at the University of London. He is currently a Visiting Fellow at the MacKinder Programme for the Study of Long-Wave Events at the London School of Economics and Political Science in the United Kingdom.

He is also a Senior Associate for the Israeli-based think tank Research on Islam and Muslim in Africa and a Senior Analyst for WikiStrat.

More articles by Prof Solomon:

Boko Haram and the case of the abducted school girls
http://muslimsinafrica.wordpress.com/2014/05/14/reinvigorating-the-fight-against-boko-haram-professor-hussein-solomon/

Australian Broadcasting Corporation interview on Boko Haram
http://www.abc.net.au/radionational/programs/counterpoint/boko-haram/5657882  

Reflections on Inga 3 and Beyond
www.saccps.blogspot.com  

Nile and Okavanga River Basins (pdf)
 
Nigeria’s Boko Haram: Beyond the rhetoric (pdf)

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