Shuffle for Mandela Day

President Mandela loved children. All children, for race was not a barrier to him. I remembered how he loved young voices singing, “Twinkle, twinkle little star”. How he loved to join in. And even, on occasion, providing a solo. I remembered how he loved to shuffle to all kinds of music. So, how about spending […]

Whereto the Rainbow Nation?

May 10th marked the anniversary of President Nelson Mandela’s Inauguration. Reading his speech twenty-eight years later was sobering. Whereto the rainbow nation? I wondered. His dreams, for what he coined our rainbow nation, seemed realistic aspirations. “Our daily deeds as ordinary South Africans must produce an actual South African reality that will reinforce humanity’s belief […]

Johannesburg: Urban Agroforest?

Highveld Grassland Biome

One of the unexpected consequences of COVID has been a growth in urban farming. As more South Africans take up the challenge of growing their own food will Johannesburg’s urban forest will Johannesburg eventually become an urban farm? Or an urban agroforest? If it is to become a farm, it would be best that it […]

Mandela Day 2021: Protecting Our Soil

Mandela Day 2021

Mandela Day 2021 takes place in the midst of a third wave, financial sabotage and exceptionally high levels of unemployment. How can tomorrow be different? This post contains some suggestions.

Amazon and the Quintuple Bottom Line

Amazon provides an opportunity to grow our economy. Not just in theory, but in reality. In this article Archaela presents possible strategies for an eco-social sustainable outcome. While it is in the interests of local stakeholders to object to the River Club redevelopment it is also in their interests to welcome Amazon. On ethical terms.

My World-Class African Suburb?

Is Orange Grove a ‘world class’ African suburb? It most certainly is buzzing with life. While it is a cosmopolitan suburb, attracting a growing number of people, it is steadily deteriorating. Can this trend be reversed?   What is a world-class city? Essentially all the world class cities are in the northern hemisphere. They include […]

Livelihoods and Climate Change/COVID19

Heritage Tree Stump Oaklands

What do sustainable livelihoods look like?  In the drama created by COVID-19 there is a tussle between saving lives and saving livelihoods. Many people across the world have got to the point where saving their livelihoods is how they save their lives. In panic mode they want to save all jobs and all businesses. Regardless […]

The Freedom Charter: Banks, Bayer and Life

Heirloom seed broccoli

I am alert to specific speeches our president makes. The short clip I listened to today, celebrating the 65th anniversary of the Freedom Charter gives me an opportunity to raise three issues that are vital for a vibrant agricultural sector. These are, firstly, the role of the banks in providing access to people ordinarily excluded […]

Black Livelihoods Matter Too

Wetlands at Blue Crane Restaurant, Nieuw Muckleneuk

George Floyd’s murder In broad daylight Captured on video Has changed my perspective I have revisited my own racism Reconnected with the racism of my ancestors As I watched Rhodes falling In the popular British imagination Along with other British imperialists As some statues were taken down; A world aware of the evil of apartheid […]

Sustainability: Five Firewood Trees

Hardwood logs

A blustery cold front made using the lovely wood burning fireplace in my lounge desirable.The batch of hardwood I bought in 2017 has proved enough for three years. Yet given that trees for firewood are being overharvested by individuals as well as businesses, what five trees would make the firewood industry sustainable? For a little […]