Every Thursday on MCL is (good) green news day. It’s when I give doom and gloom the beady eye by sharing a selection of the latest feel-good stories that have helped warm the cockles of my increasingly green heart (and which are inspiring me to live a better, greener life).

Leading sustainable seafood programme expands into Southern Africa

Kalk Bay fishThe world’s fish stocks are running very low, and need careful management if they’re to remain a sustainable resource.  That’s why it’s good news that South Africa’s getting a bit of help to pull it off:

“The Marine Stewardship Council (MSC) has opened an office in South Africa and hired new staff to implement its fishery certification and seafood eco-labelling programme for wild capture fisheries in the Southern Africa Development Community.

“Working in partnership with the seafood industry, the MSC’s aim is to use its eco-labelling and fishery certification programme to help transform how the world’s seas and oceans are worked, and to influence the choices people make when buying seafood, so that responsible management is rewarded and the seafood industry contributes positively to the health of the oceans. “

According to the article, the eco-labels could “potentially increase export returns and thus help raise peoples’ standard of living” – meaning it’s not only better for the ocean, but also for the fishing community.

Cobhouse in GreytonNew ‘green’ rating system to launch

In the hopes of encouraging the construction of more eco-friendly buildings, the Green Building Council of SA (GBCSA – previously mentioned here) plans to launch a Green Star rating tool next month.

Why rate the greenness of a building?  Because people just love being graded (some things never change), and being able to say just how very utterly green their swanky new building is.  Grade me! Grade me!

So, why should we be building green?  Well, because of this:

“40% of the world’s energy is consumed by buildings, either through direct consumption or through the use of products which consume energy to produce and transport. The implementation of ‘green’ buildings can effectively reduce consumption by 30 – 70%. This is particularly important in SA, where the bulk of electricity comes from coal and is therefore ‘dirty’ energy. “

Buildings will be awarded points according to various criteria, including architectural design, waste management and, in particular energy-usage.  What with our current energy crisis, this can’t be a bad thing, wot…

And in other good green news:

  • Madagascar, France join hands for green drive‘ – Madagascar and France sign an agreement allocating $20-million (about R160-million) to preserve Madagascar’s rich biodiversity.  (iol.co.za)
  • Backsberg wins Mail & Guardian award‘ – Backsberg Wine Estate wins the Mail & Guardian Greening the Future award for energy efficiency and carbon management. (sarocks.co.za)
  • Developers go green‘ – South Africa’s power crisis has an upside: developers wanting to have their projects approved (earlier this year, Eskom issued a moratorium on new developments) are getting creative and finding ways to drastically reduce their energy usage. (mg.co.za)
  • Many feet make lights work‘ – Engineers in Britain have come up with a way to generate electricity from the footsteps of people walking across floors. (treevolution.co.za)
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