Draft Climate Change Plan

The table below provides a list of drafted climate change plan documents that are available for download for the Ehlanzeni District Municipality.
File Name
Year
Size (MB)
Type
Download
Ehlanzeni District Municipality CC Presentation201612,980Power PointDownload
Ehlanzeni District Municipality CC Response Plan20161,013WORDDownload

Key Climate Hazards

Increasing temperatures

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.

Figure: Projected changes in annual average temperatures throughout Ehlanzeni over the period 2021-2050 under the RCP 8.5 scenario (CSIR 2019)

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.

Figure: Projected changes in annual average rainfall throughout Ehlanzeni over the period 2021-2050 under the RCP 8.5 scenario (CSIR 2019)

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.

Figure: Projected changes in the annual average number of extreme rainfall days throughout Ehlanzeni over the period 2021-2050 under the RCP 8.5 scenario (CSIR 2019)

Changing Biomes

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.

Figure: The current delineation of biomes in Ehlanzeni (SANParks 2011a)
Figure: The predicted shift in biomes in Ehlanzeni using a high-risk scenario (SANParks 2011b)

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.

Theme
Indicator Title
Exposure
Exposure Comment
Sensitivity
Sensitivity Comment
Adaptive Capacity
Adaptive Capacity Comment
AgricultureChange in grain (maize, wheat & barley) productionYesSubsistence Farming and Commercial FarmingHighBarberton and Mbombela
More subsistence farming
Food security
Job opportunities
Livelihoods (food security)
LowBoth Subsistence farmers and commercial farmers have been highly impacted by the current drought.
AgricultureChange in other crop production areas (e.g. vegetables, nuts, etc.)Yes0High0Low0
AgricultureIncreased risks to livestockYes0High0LowNeed to consult with Agriculture to understand the type of measures that have been put in place to assist communities (Ehlanzeni rural development draft report).
Biodiversity and EnvironmentLoss of High Priority BiomesYesGrasslandsHighPredominantly grassland BiomeLowHotspot areas in Nkomazi Area
Human HealthIncreased heat stressYesEhlanzeni
Nkomazi, Mbombela and Bushbuck Ridge
HighImpacts on infants and elderly is high
High for 2015/2016
LowNo prior research on impacts
Human HealthIncreased Occupational health problemsYesAcross the districtHighDue to migration and high unemploymentLow0
Human Settlements, Infrastructure and Disaster ManagementIncreased isolation of rural communitiesYesSphelanyaha
Badfontein
HighPredominantly ruralLowNo mechanisms or strategies to address the isolation of rural communities
WaterDecreased quality of drinking waterYes0HighThis will depend on whether or not a municipality is a Water Service Authority.
Municipalities that may be affected:
Thaba Chweu
Nkomazi
Bushbuckridge
LowDue to the drought currently experienced, and the effluent discharged back into the system, the standards are not being complied with.
WaterDecreased water quality in ecosystem due to floods and droughtsYes0HighAll local municipalities are water service authorityLowInfrastructure maintenance and refurbishment and budget of operations

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.

Socio-Economic Vulnerability

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.

Figure: Socio-economic vulnerability per local municipality in Ehlanzeni (Le Roux, van Huyssteen, et al. 2019)

Environmental Vulnerability

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.

Figure: Environmental vulnerability per local municipality in Ehlanzeni (Le Roux, van Huyssteen, et al. 2019)

Physical Vulnerability

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.

Figure: Physical vulnerability per local municipality in Ehlanzeni (Le Roux, van Huyssteen, et al. 2019)

Economic Vulnerability

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.

Figure: Economic vulnerability per local municipality in Ehlanzeni (Le Roux, van Huyssteen, et al. 2019)

References