Draft Climate Change Plan
Key Climate Hazards
The figure below shows projected changes in annual average temperatures, highlighting increasing temperatures throughout the district for the period 2021-2050 under the RCP 8.5 scenario. By 2050, the district is projected to be affected by higher annual average temperatures, which will adversely affect water and food security. Evaporation rates will also likely increase and agricultural outputs may reduce.
Increasing rainfall variability
The figure below shows projected shifts in annual average rainfall throughout the district between 2021-2050 under the RCP 8.5 scenario. Annual average rainfall amounts vary across the district. There is uncertainty regarding projected future rainfall.
Increasing storms and flooding events
The figure below shows projected changes in the annual average number of extreme rainfall days throughout the district over the period 2021-2050 under the RCP 8.5 scenario. Increases in the number of rainfall days are likely to result in an increase in intense storms, and flooding events across the district.
The current delineation of biomes is depicted in the figure below, with the predicted shift in biomes shown in the following figure based on a high-risk scenario. The biomes have varying sensitivities to the projected impacts of climate change which are further exacerbated by issues such as the fragmentation of natural areas and unsustainable water usage rates.
Climate Change Vulnerability
A climate change vulnerability assessment is a way of identifying and prioritising impacts from climate change. The IPCC defines vulnerability as:
"Vulnerability to climate change is the degree to which geophysical, biological and socio-economic systems are susceptible to, and unable to cope with, adverse impacts of climate change"
Summary of Climate Change Response Plan
A vulnerability assessment lets you identify these adverse impacts of climate change that are most important to your area. The climate change vulnerability assessment process that is used in this toolkit identified the following indicators in the table below.
Adaptive Capacity Comment
|Agriculture||Change in grain (maize, wheat & barley) production||Yes||Much less||High||Production is very low due to reduced rainfall and a rise in temperature.||Low||0|
|Agriculture||Change in Sorghum production||Yes||Much less||High||Winter production taking off due to high winter temperatures.||Low||0|
|Agriculture||Increased risks to livestock||Yes||Less grassland||High||Less grassland biodiversity meaning that the District Municipal Area is less suitable for cattle farming, than for wild animal (game) farming.||Low||0|
|Agriculture||Reduced food security||Yes||The effect of low production is reduced food security in the District Municipal Area.||High||Total and fatal health education on employment.||Low||No existing interventions.|
|Biodiversity and Environment||Loss of High Priority Biomes||Yes||Grassland biomes||High||Changing from Grassland to Savanna biome||Low||0|
|Human Health||Increased water borne and communicable diseases (e.g. typhoid fever, cholera and hepatitis)||Yes||Cholera due to poor waste water treatment in the entire District Municipal Area, e.g. Ngwathe and Mafube.||High||No issues have been reported. However, people could contract the disease from another area.||Low||There are no programs in place|
|Human Settlements, Infrastructure and Disaster Management||Loss of industrial and labour productivity||Yes||National Petroleum Refiners of SA (NATREF) |
Industry is a significant employer.
Secure high GDP and income.
|Low||No policy or programme in place.|
Disaster Management Plan exists for the DM, however, no plans for industries.
|Human Settlements, Infrastructure and Disaster Management||Increased impacts on strategic infrastructure||Yes||Rail infrastructure is already affected.|
Drainage systems are blocked and some areas have no drainage.
|High||R59 Certified to carry hazardous substances like fertilizers.||Low||No policy or programme in place.|
Partnership with SANRAL and spill companies. Metsimaholo mutual aid forum in place.
|Human Settlements, Infrastructure and Disaster Management||Decreased income from tourism||Yes||Revon Park, the Dome, Vaal River and the Vaal Dam.||High||Tourism is significant is the Vaal River and Vaal Dam areas.||Low||Tourism assets like dams - if they do not have water, they lose value as tourist attractions.|
|Water||Decreased quality of drinking water||Yes||There is a LTF (forum) in the area that discusses issues of water quality. |
There is a lot of salt concentrations and discharges which affects the water quality.
Maintenance of infrastructure has a water quality impact.
|High||The average blue drop score for the District Municipal Area is 45.79%.||Low||Policies and plans are not there. Lack of infrastructure capacity.|
Lack of resources and coordination.
|Water||Decreased water quality in ecosystem due to floods and droughts||Yes||Same as above. Waste water discharge in barrage (Case study).||High||The average green drop score for the District Municipal Area is 39.5%; in Metsimalo it's 61.7%, Moqhaka is 40.8%, Ngwathe is 46.3% and Mafube is 9.5%.||Low||Poorly maintained and aging infrastructure.|
|Water||Less water available for irrigation and drinking||Yes||The Vaal Dam is at around 28% full due to no rain and lots of evaporation. Water restrictions are in place.||High||The District Municipal Area has a rate of 2.4 incidences per 1000 children.||Low||No plans to deal with drought. |
Poorly maintained and aging infrastructure.
The CSIR Greenbook has also developed and refined a vulnerability assessment framework by collating relevant data into composite vulnerability indicators. Four local municipality level vulnerability indices were computed and are shown spatially below.
Social inequalities are the factors that affect the susceptibility and coping mechanisms of communities and households. Indicators for social vulnerability attempt to consider the sensitivity, response and recovery from the impacts of natural hazards. The CSIR Green Book has developed a socio-economic vulnerability index that is measured on a scale from 1 (low vulnerability) to 10 (high vulnerability). The map below shows the Socio-Economic vulnerability score of each municipality in the district visually.
Environmental vulnerability describes the vulnerability and risk to the natural environment and the impacts on the ecological infrastructure of which surrounding settlements are dependent. The environmental risk of an area includes ecosystems, habitats, physical and biological processes (reproduction, diversity, energy ﬂows, etc). The CSIR Green Book has developed an Environmental Vulnerability Index that is measured on a scale from 1 (low vulnerability) to 10 (high vulnerability). The map below shows the environmental vulnerability score of each municipality in the district visually.
Physical vulnerability describes the physical fabric and connectedness of settlements (buildings and infrastructure) and focuses mainly on the conditions that exist before a hazard occurs and the expected level of resulting loss. The CSIR Green Book has developed a physical vulnerability index that is measured on a scale from 1 (low vulnerability) to 10 (high vulnerability). The map below shows the physical vulnerability score of each municipality in the district visually.
Economic vulnerability describes the potential risks posed by hazards on economic assets and processes. Potential hazards can include job losses, increased poverty and interruptions in business activities. The CSIR Green Book has developed an economic vulnerability index that is measured on a scale from 1 (low vulnerability) to 10 (high vulnerability). The map below shows the economic vulnerability score of each municipality in the district visually.
- CSIR. 2019. ‘Green Book | Adapting South African Settlements to Climate Change’. Green Book | Adapting South African Settlements to Climate Change. 2019. www.greenbook.co.za.
- Le Roux, A, E van Huyssteen, K Arnold, and C Ludick. 2019. ‘The Vulnerabilities of South Africa’s Settlements’. Green Book. 2019. https://pta-gis-2-web1.csir.co.za/portal/apps/GBCascade/index.html?appid=280ff54e54c145a5a765f736ac5e68f8.
SANParks. 2011a. ‘CCAB - Current Biome Delineations 2011 [Vector Geospatial Dataset]’. Available from the Biodiversity GIS website. http://bgis.sanbi.org/SpatialDataset/Detail/484
SANParks. 2011b. ‘CCAB - High Risk Scenarios - Biome Delineations 2011 [Vector Geospatial Dataset]’. Available from the Biodiversity GIS website. http://bgis.sanbi.org/SpatialDataset/Detail/486.