I have never been one to enjoy golf. I think it is boring like London weather. The one good thing about golf, though, is that it is an excellent barometer for the state of the economy - the more golf players on the golf course, the more encouraging the state of economic activity in the country. But our golf courses are starting to appear dejected and forlorn with the scarcity of visitors.
Our Summer rains here in Gauteng earlier this year brought us more than our fair share of flooding. Damage once more occurred and, despite the disputes that the insurance companies are known to engage in not to pay out, agreements were eventually concluded and we all went on our merry ways again.
The debate around hydraulic fracturing in the Karoo is an issue of national and public interest. Shale gas extraction has the potential, some say, to change the face of the country's power industry and improve the lives of millions of South Africans. Public opinion, however, is a powerful force well known to have hampered the nuclear industry in the past
We approached Dr Chris Herold, past chairman of the SAICE Water Engineering Division, for his comments on the EE Publishers article in particular, and on the fracking issue in general. These are a few of his thoughts.
Construction Quality Assurance (CQA) would appear to be a relatively misunderstood concept in the South African civil engineering fraternity, specifically with reference to the construction of solid or liquid waste containment facilities incorporating geosynthetic lining systems. Civil engineers are comfortable with conventional construction monitoring activities, which may be carried out on a part-time or resident engineer basis, but is the true meaning and value of independent Construction Quality Assurance really understood?
It is generally accepted that disasters are having an increasing impact on our lives, property, environment, infrastructure, and economic and social activities. Globally, severe weather and other natural phenomena, as well as human activities, are exacting a heavy toll on us and the environment we depend on. The results of disasters are human suffering, and damage to the resources and infrastructure on which humans rely for survival and quality of life. In the aftermath of a disaster, it is critical to rapidly determine the exact nature of the impacts and what will be required to restore the situation, or preferably to improve the situation by reducing vulnerability to future impacts.
S&P JV - a joint venture between PD Naidoo & Associates, and SSI - is nearing completion on a multi-million rand contract awarded in 2007 by the City of Cape Town to launch one of the first greenfields wastewater treatment works to be constructed in Cape Town for many years. The total cost of the project is around R150 million.
Many environmental impact assessment (EIA) reports are lacking in science and technology, in that they contain more description than scientific calculation. EIA reports, which are vital tools for decision-makers, involve specialised studies in specialised fields, many of which are based on environmental engineering.
The vision for South African transport is of a system which will:
"Provide safe, reliable, effective, efficient, and fully integrated transport operations and infrastructure which will best meet the needs of freight and passenger customers at improving levels of service and cost in a fashion which supports government strategies for economic and social development whilst being environmentally and economically sustainable." (White Paper on National Transport Policy 1996)
There is no denying that the state of public transport in South Africa is in a terrible state and definitely does not support the above transport vision. Public transport in South Africa is expensive, unreliable and ineffective. These are some of the challenges faced by commuters, many of whom are from the poorest of the poor.
In February 2010, Aurecon was awarded a contract by the Provincial Government of the Western Cape to establish a Programme Implementation Unit (PIU) within the Western Cape Education Department (WCED) to assist in the implementation of school infrastructure projects.
The City of Cape Town realised that unsatisfactory maintenance conditions prevailed in their housing stock of 43 500 units. As a start 7 775 rental units were identified in eleven areas across the Cape Metropole in a pilot project programme for basic upgrade refurbishment in terms of the Community Residential Unit (CRU) Programme of the National Government. In August 2008 Aurecon was appointed as implementing agent for the upgrade of 3 840 units (R506 million). The areas included Hanover Park, Heideveld, Ottery (Marble Flats), Kewtown (Athlone) and Elsies River (The Range).
In 2007 the light steel frame system was introduced in the Southern Cape under the guidance of the Southern African Institute of Steel Construction (SAISC). Shortly thereafter two manufacturing plants opened their doors, one in George and the other in Mossel Bay.
On Monday 11 October 2010, possibly the largest ever (area-based) single-pour post-tensioned (PT) slab on ground pavement was completed at Toll-Intermodal's container storage facility in Laverton, Victoria, Australia. At 5 824 m2 it incorporated over 50 tonnes of post-tensioning cable and required some 1 590 m3 45 MPa concrete. The 260 mm thick slab is the largest single pour area of post-tensioned concrete ever constructed in Australia.
Imagine a world where dustbin overflow no longer exists, and where no waste is being blown around the countryside. Th is ideal can become a reality with Translift's underground waste collection and storage systems, which are not only able to handle increased amounts of waste, but can keep waste out of sight by taking it underground.
During the storms of June 2008, more than 100 mm of rain fell during a 15-minute period in the Amanzimtoti area, causing a flash flood that sent water through an old age home adjacent to the N2 national route, across Kingsway Road and down the 80 m high dunes, taking with it some 60 000 m3 of material and leaving a trail of damaged houses and roads in its wake.