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||Production along the major rivers, dependent on water availability and run off. Therefore less runoff. Potential to grow grain in Norvalspont, Colesberg, Vanderkloof, Petrusville, Hopetown, Douglas, Prieska and Marydale.||High||Only towns near the Orange River are dependant on grain production.|
|Low||Climate Change Toolkit; Agri Co-operations (e.g.. GWKOVK)|
|Agriculture||Increased risks to livestock||Yes||Droughts, less grazing, increased livestock mortality. Sheep, cattle, goats and game are present in the District Municipal Area.||High||Commercial exports |
Small scale subsistence farmers
|Low||Farmers, GWK (agribusiness), Department of Rural Development and Land Reform.|
Support programme run by Department of Agriculture for all farmers.
Support programme run by Department of Rural Development and Land Reform for small scale farmers.
|Biodiversity and Environment||Increased impacts on environment due to land-use change||Yes||Solar, Square Kilometre Array (SKA), Fracking. Urbanisation.||High||Continuing of land change as point of renewable energy corridor.|
Expansion of SKA site.
Groundwater contamination possibility.
|Low||State of Environment Report.|
Strategic environmental assessment (SEA) for renewable energy corridor.
|Biodiversity and Environment||Loss of Priority Wetlands and River ecosystems||Yes||Hanover, Colesburg area (Orange River), Riet ,Vaal River.||High||Community around these wetlands are dependant upon them - they are ecological support areas.||Low||RAMSAR Site|
Working for Water and Working for Wetland programmes (to be confirmed)
|Human Health||Health impacts from increased storm events||Yes||Loss of life (Humans and animals), relocation of families, damage to informal structures and households; and mental issues (such as depression).||High||Douglas|
Overflow of water treatment plant.
|Low||South African Police Service, Department of Health, Northern Cape Department of Cooperative Governance, Human Settlement and Traditional Affairs (COGHSTA), Disaster Management Unit.|
|Human Health||Increased vector borne diseases from spread of mosquitoes, ticks, sandflies, and blackflies||Yes||Increase in mosquito and tick population; Increase in skin irritation; Increase in midges||High||Due to domestic farming within residential areas within the district there are high cases of tick bites.||Low||SA Weather Service, Department of Health, Statistics SA, Department of Agriculture. Not enough Environmental Health Practitioners. No commonage land.|
|Human Health||Increased water borne and communicable diseases (e.g. typhoid fever, cholera and hepatitis)||Yes||Negative impact of human health due to polluted water. Increase in mosquito and tick population; Increase in skin irritation; Increase in midges.|
Multidrug-resistant tuberculosis (MDR-TB).
|High||Contamination of water sources- Waste water treatment plants.|
Illegal water pipe connections.
|Low||SA Weather Services, Department of Health, Statistics SA; Department of Agriculture.|
|Human Health||Increased Occupational health problems||Yes||Increase in temperature leads to decrease in productivity.|
Agricultural sector, mines, construction all work outside.
|High||Most work is outside which requires people to be active outside.||Low||SA Weather, Department of Health, Department of Agriculture, Statistics SA|
|Human Settlements, Infrastructure and Disaster Management||Increased impacts on strategic infrastructure||Yes||Cracks in roads cause car accidents, damage to bridges and loss of life. |
Vaal River overflows - Douglas.
Flooding of water bridge and fly over - De Aar.
|High||If the bridges flood, the town is not accessible.|
|Low||Department of Transport, Safety and Liaison.|
Require financing to implement the disaster management plan.
Disaster management policy is outdated.
Lack of institutional capacity
|Human Settlements, Infrastructure and Disaster Management||Decreased income from tourism||Yes||Less access to tourism hotspots. Less interest in water recreational facilities (Swimming, fishing, river rafting) in the Gariep and Vanderkoof dams.|
Branding, marketing, nature reserves, historical monument garden of remembrance, rock art and the Square Kilometre Array (SKA).
|High||Accommodation, roads and dams.||Low||Department of Tourism; Northern Cape Department: Environment and Nature Conservation; and Northern Cape Tourism Authority (NCTA) are all under capacitated.|
No plans or finance developed.
|Water||Decreased quality of drinking water||Yes||Increases in salt concentration, turbidity, and groundwater dependence are due to decreases in available water, and increases in pollution and sediments. Impacts of Fracking as lower parts of Karroo will be affected. Exploration||High||District Municipal average. Water quality and stress already occuring in the District: Specific Municipalities. Asbestos contamination of groundwater. No recharge and dilution from rain and other sources.||Low||Department of Water and Sanitation, Climate Change Toolkit, Blue Drop, general knowledge, Municipal studies. |
Reverse osmosis process.
|Water||Less water available for irrigation and drinking||Yes||The whole district area is arid, therefore the impact is higher. Orange River 100km away. Highly dependent on ground water in De Aar. High salt content. Vier West, Vosburg, Loxton, Van Wyksvlei.||High||Very frequent cases of diarrhoea. Water quality is a causal factor. Water treatment plants don’t chlorinate due to financial constraints.||Low||Department of Water and Sanitation, District Integrated Development Plan (IDP), Municipal Feasibility Studies, District Environmental management framework (EMF). |
Boiling water alert system.
Regular (monthly) water testing.
Environmental Health Practitioners in each Municipality.
These projects are however insufficient to bring about the significant change that is required within the sector.
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.