A challenge to corporate SA to boost the green value chain

It's often said that thirsty invasive plants are sucking South Africa's rivers dry, something a drought-prone country can ill afford.

It's an issue social entrepreneur Jules Newton is passionate about addressing.

The programme director of Green Business Value Chain, she aims to link formal and informal economies to help rural communities thrive and also to address the country's water crisis.

I mean, literally, you can see riverbeds that are empty , children digging deep down into those riverbeds to fetch water and up in the catchment above there is just wattle.

Jules Newton, Programme director - Green Business Value Chain

In Matatiele, we are working with some very effective small NGOs there to help them (the community) understand.

Jules Newton, Programme director - Green Business Value Chain

According to Newton education is vital to help communities understand that removing invasive plants will not only bring their water back, but can provide an income.

In those settlements where older community members are still knowledgable, she says, progress is quicker. In one example elders knew that driving cattle through a cleared area would deposit dung to restore the land.

When you cut those trees down nothing grows back, the soil quality is gone... In one of those communities some of the old people said let's drive the cattle through here.

Jules Newton, Programme director - Green Business Value Chain

Within 18 months - a completely restored landscape. A beautiful community solution.

Jules Newton, Programme director - Green Business Value Chain

Newton points out that corporate South Africa has a huge risk exposure to water and needs to get involved in solving the problem at grassroots level.

I am wanting to challenge corporate South Africa to say, look, you are full of incredibly talented humans... put the dots together with your clever young managers and get them to start solving some of these environmental challenges with economic solutions.

Jules Newton, Programme director - Green Business Value Chain

She also urges consumers to become activists and use their buying power to force large retailers to use more eco-friendly products. She says this will help boost the production of products that can be gleaned from cleared alien trees.

Take a listen for more on the future of social entrepreneurship


Recommended

by NEWSROOM AI
Read More
Could latest allegations spell the end for ANC's Ace?

Could latest allegations spell the end for ANC's Ace?

A report on Tuesday claims the ruling party will investigate its secretary-general for alleged involvement in formation of ATM.

Arms deal review: 'Crucial evidence ignored, witnesses not allowed to testify'

Arms deal review: 'Crucial evidence ignored, witnesses not allowed to testify'

EWN reporter Clement Manyathela and activist Terry Crawford-Brown look at the arguments brought by civic organisations.

'A child without a car seat doesn't stand a chance in a crash'

'A child without a car seat doesn't stand a chance in a crash'

Wheel Wells founder Peggie Mars discusses keeping children safe on and near our roads.

Release full Ramaphosa-Bosasa report, DA tells Public Protector

Release full Ramaphosa-Bosasa report, DA tells Public Protector

Opposition chief whip John Steenhuisen refutes allegations the party's interest is to get ammunition against the president.

Wilhelm Verwoerd grateful to South Africans for inviting him on mutual journey

Wilhelm Verwoerd grateful to South Africans for inviting him on mutual journey

The author says his book is part of challenge young black South Africans set him to do 'white work' about effects of apartheid.

Pets and sectional title scheme rules

Pets and sectional title scheme rules

A specialist attorney explains the process of trying to change a no-pet rule and how to address problems with 'nuisance' animals.

Popular articles
Journalist explores what could go wrong with the new street cameras in Joburg

Journalist explores what could go wrong with the new street cameras in Joburg

Daily Maverick's contributor Heidi Swart says service providers that install surveillance monitors need to be responsible.

Beware pneumonia-causing bacteria lurking in your geyser (and how to kill it)

Beware pneumonia-causing bacteria lurking in your geyser (and how to kill it)

Stellenbosch University's Dr Jo Barnes says Legionella can only survive the water temperature up to 50 degrees.

[WATCH] Mabena's lack of agility has social media in stitches, we are Mabena!

[WATCH] Mabena's lack of agility has social media in stitches, we are Mabena!

Khabazela shares tweets and Facebook posts that have gone viral.

'President Ramaphosa won Reserve Bank fight 6-0'

'President Ramaphosa won Reserve Bank fight 6-0'

Faction fighting will continue, but President Ramaphosa is stronger than he was 18 months ago, says political analyst JP Landman.

SA engineer Neo Hutiri cuts waiting time for medicine from hours to seconds

SA engineer Neo Hutiri cuts waiting time for medicine from hours to seconds

He came up with the idea for "Pelebox" after contracting tuberculosis and having to queue for medicine at a state hospital.

[WATCH] 11-year-old cancer survivor gets AGT judge Simon Cowell's golden buzzer

[WATCH] 11-year-old cancer survivor gets AGT judge Simon Cowell's golden buzzer

Khabazela shares tweets and Facebook posts that have gone viral.

SA’s richest woman opens up about being a refugee and becoming a billionaire

SA’s richest woman opens up about being a refugee and becoming a billionaire

Magda Wierzycka – Sygnia’s renegade CEO – on her attitude toward money (hopes and fears, successes and failures, etc.).

Meet Sandile Shabalala, CEO of black-owned and controlled TymeBank

Meet Sandile Shabalala, CEO of black-owned and controlled TymeBank

TymeBank has no branches and no monthly fees. Most transactions are free. Bruce Whitfield interviews its CEO.