Latest News Archive

Please select Category, Year, and then Month to display items
Years
2017 2018 2019 2020
Previous Archive
04 June 2019 | Story Valentino Ndaba | Photo Charl Devenish
Prof Cathryn Tonne
Air pollution not only costs lives, it costs money too. Pictured is Prof Cathryn Tonne presenting a guest lecture on air pollution at the Bloemfontein Campus.

Health effects associated with ambient air pollution (AAP) have been well documented. Subsequently, the relationship between pollution and financial outcomes have also become a focus for case studies globally. An Environmental Research journal article revealed that “low and middle-income countries are disproportionately affected by the global burden of adverse health effects caused by AAP”. 

A high price to pay

In 2012, high concentrations of air pollution caused 7.4% of all deaths, costing South Africa up to 6% of its Gross Domestic Product. According to the recent International Growth Centre study conducted by senior University of Cape Town researchers, this is a direct consequence of the country’s heavy dependence of fossil fuels, a source of health-damaging air pollution and greenhouse pollutants.

Stunted human and economic growth

These South African statistics are attested to by Prof Cathryn Tonne who recently presented a guest lecture on air pollution which was hosted by the University of the Free State (UFS) Business School.

“Air pollution can affect economic development through several pathways, and health is an important one. Air pollution is linked to shorter life expectancy, chronic disease, asthma exacerbation and many other health outcomes that result in absenteeism from work and school. These have large direct costs to the health system.” 

Prof Tonne says that air pollution exposure in children is linked to reduced cognitive development, with important impacts on human capital. As a result, children are not reaching their full potential in terms of neurodevelopment, which has an effect on their income prospects and the economy as a whole. 

Resolving a looming disaster

Technology may be employed to radically clean the air. Cities need to lead in the reduction of air pollution by promoting renewable energy, using active transport such as walking or cycling, and investing in infrastructure to make this safe and attractive. 

With researchers playing a major role in strengthening the case for aggressive air pollution control, the government needs to implement policies in order to control sources of air pollution. This global health and economic issue also requires individuals and communities to play their part to improve air quality.

News Archive

Unit for Students with Disabilities impresses
2012-08-10

MUT learns from UFS: From the left, back: Ms Hetsie Veitch, Head of the Unit for Students with Disabilities at the UFS; Mr Rudi Buys, Student Dean at the UFS; front: Mr Mthoko Ntuli, Student Development Officer; Ms Lindiwe Chamane, Student Guidance Officer; and Dr Sibongiseni Ngcamu, Coordinator of Organisational Development (all from the MUT).
10 August 2012

Staff of the Mangosuthu University of Technology (MUT) in KwaZulu-Natal visited the Bloemfontein Campus of the University of the Free State (UFS) to gain insight into the working of the Unit for Students with Disabilities. They visited the campus on recommendation of the Deputy Minister of Women, Children and People with Disabilities, Ms Hendrietta Ipeleng Bogopane-Zulu.

In the interaction between the two institutions, it was agreed that the Unit for Students with Disabilities would assist the MUT in drawing up a policy for students with disabilities, as well as on how to make residences more accessible and to manage support services for the students. The two institutions also agree to closer collaboration of student governance and leadership development as well as international students.

Ms Hetsie Veitch, Head of the Unit for Students with Disabilities, said this was not the first time that the UFS was used as a benchmark. She said the UFS is held in high regard because every disabled student’s needs were specifically addressed. “We follow a holistic approach so that students with disabilities have the same student life and experience as any other


 

We use cookies to make interactions with our websites and services easy and meaningful. To better understand how they are used, read more about the UFS cookie policy. By continuing to use this site you are giving us your consent to do this.

Accept