Journal of Public Administration - Volume 50, Issue 1, 2015
Volumes & issues
Volume 50, Issue 1, 2015
Green economy and local government : towards resource efficient and climate responsive African settlements : editorialSource: Journal of Public Administration 50, pp 1 –5 (2015)More Less
The multi-disciplinary nature of Public Administration is an important platform for the scholarly engagement on issues of multi-, inter- and trans-disciplinarity (MIT). Common problems confronting modern governments worldwide require scholars to facilitate high level engagements on these issues to consider their different dimensions. This MIT focus therefore could serve as a necessary dimension for enriching scholarly discourse on pertinent issues. This edition of the journal focuses on one of these discourses, climate change in the context of green economy transition, and the manner in which municipalities need to weigh their options in their regulatory function.
Understanding of the current practices, challenges and opportunities of the green economy in Limpopo ProvinceSource: Journal of Public Administration 50, pp 6 –31 (2015)More Less
The paper investigates the current practices of the green economy, and challenges and opportunities in the Limpopo Province of South Africa. The paper is based on a baseline study designed to gather data from key informants in Limpopo provincial, district and local municipalities. Twenty-three key informants in the province were interviewed. Primary data collected from key informants was supplemented by secondary data from document reviews. Descriptive statistics were used to analyse data on the current practices of green economy, and challenges and opportunities in the province. Findings from the study suggest that there is generally significant awareness of the green economy concept across the provincial district and local municipalities in Limpopo Province. However, there are gaps in terms of information gathering, storage and sharing on green economy activities in the district municipalities, provincial and national departments. The main barriers constraining the implementation of green economy initiatives in the municipalities include lack of information; shortage of workers with full knowledge on green economy; shortage of training programmes on green economy; and costs of implementation. The main recommendations from this research include the need to improve awareness of green economy activities across all levels in the province, especially with communities' need for evidence-based research to demonstrate the potential of green economy activities that can contribute to job creation and poverty reduction; and training of officials on how the green economy can contribute to addressing developmental challenges such as service delivery, job creation, local economic development and poverty reduction.
Green growth transitions through a green infrastructure approach at the local government level : case study for the Gauteng City-RegionSource: Journal of Public Administration 50, pp 32 –49 (2015)More Less
The risks associated with rapid urbanisation and climate change have highlighted the need to reconfigure the growth and development trajectories of cities and economies both internationally and locally. Cities around the world are exploring opportunities, such as the green growth agenda, to achieve sustainable development through innovative approaches to planning and delivering urban infrastructure and services. The concept of green infrastructure (GI) has emerged internationally as a way to foster economic growth and development using natural or man-made assets to provide resources and environmental services. GI is a set of natural and man-made ecological systems that provide services to society, such as flood attenuation, water and air filtration, and microclimate regulation, which can be used as an alternative, or partner to traditional infrastructure. As infrastructure policies are central to the implementation of a successful green growth strategy, GI offers a new approach for providing cost-effective and efficient infrastructure while meeting green growth objectives. This paper explores the potential for GI to meet green growth commitments in the Gauteng City-Region (GCR). The research includes a desktop analysis of how the concept of green growth has permeated policy and planning in South Africa and how GI can be used to operationalise green growth concepts. These concepts have been unpacked through a GI CityLab - a platform of engagement that draws together insights from government officials and academics - that collaboratively explores how GI can be applied to government planning in the GCR. The CityLab findings highlight that while there is potential for GI to help deliver infrastructure and services in a more sustainable and cost-effective way, there are significant barriers to the uptake of this approach. The paper concludes by positing that to overcome these barriers, local case studies and suitable GIS databases need to be developed to facilitate the incorporation of GI into policy and planning in the GCR.
Source: Journal of Public Administration 50, pp 50 –69 (2015)More Less
The study sought to determine the extent to which green procurement is practised in South African metropolitan municipalities. The study found that there are mainly two categories of metropolitan municipalities namely, the older and younger ones. The older metropolitans use different policies to convey the green procurement discourse. Such policies include the Supply Chain Management Policies of the City of Cape Town and eThekwini; the Environmental Policy of the City of Cape Town, City of Tshwane and Ekurhuleni; Waste Management Policy of the City of Cape Town; and the Energy and Climate Change Policy of Ekurhuleni. Two metropolitans that had made significant strides in the area of green procurement are the City of Cape Town and Nelson Mandela Bay Metropolitan. The City of Cape has developed an Information Guide on the Implementation of Green Public Procurement and the Nelson Mandela Bay has also developed the Green Procurement Strategy to be implemented by the city. Whereas the older metropolitans have made efforts to include green procurement in selected policies, the younger metropolitans are yet to do so. Regardless of the policy status accorded to green procurement by the older metropolitans, the study found that the implementation of green procurement through tender decision, call for tender and the actual procurement is not imminent as evidenced by over 70% of the respondents. This indicates a gap that exists between policies and implementation.
Local government and green jobs creation : exploring opportunities in selected metropolitan municipalities in South AfricaAuthor T. MoyoSource: Journal of Public Administration 50, pp 70 –89 (2015)More Less
In response to the challenges posed by climate change, the South African government has developed strategic frameworks in order to guide national, provincial and local government interventions. Some of the key strategies include the National Strategy for Sustainable Development and Action Plan (NSSD), the National Development Plan (NDP), the National New Growth Path (NGP) and the Industrial Policy Action Plan (IPAP), and the Green Economy Accord. Metropolitan municipalities are the focus of the study because of their central role, both as contributors to the climate change problem as well as their potential as solutions to the challenge. Because most of the nation's industrial activities are also located in these metros, they are largely responsible for the high carbon emissions that contribute to climate change. At the same time, their legislative status in terms of their being one of the three spheres of government empowers them to adopt policies and strategies towards mitigation of and adaptation to climate change. The paper explores how four metro municipalities have responded to the government's green economy agenda. It also attempts to identify opportunities for green job creation. Based on a desk study, the paper finds that although most of the selected metros have already developed visions and strategic plans that integrate the green economy agenda into their integrated development and spatial planning processes, and although they have scored some significant successes on aspects of those plans, implementation of their green strategies largely remains limited. However, the green activities that they have embarked on indicate that there are prospects for the creation of green jobs. The paper also recommends institutional, technical and financial support to metros in order to improve on the implementation of their green strategies. They also need to improve reporting on progress on green jobs creation.
Source: Journal of Public Administration 50, pp 90 –107 (2015)More Less
The advent of climate change and green economy has created a need for policies and strategies that address these issues. In South Africa the national government and some local government authorities formulated policies seeking to ensure a smooth transition into a green economy. However, formulating policies differs markedly from the successful implementation of the same policies. The article examines the implementation of green economy policies using a case study approach. The 5-C framework used in the paper recognises five variables in the implementation process as (1) content, (2) commitment, (3) capacity, (4) clients and (5) coalitions, which act together, often simultaneously and synergistically, but always in a complex fashion, to create both opportunities and challenges in policy implementation. The research reveals that a number of initiatives, such as green buildings, green transport (A Re Yeng Bus Rapid Transit System) and green procurement have been implemented. The authors argue that although there is demonstrable capacity and commitment by the City of Tshwane to transition to a green economy, there is a need for more related initiatives to ensure significant change is attained.
Blue in the green economy : land use change and wetland shrinkage in Belvedere North and Epworth localities, ZimbabweSource: Journal of Public Administration 50, pp 108 –124 (2015)More Less
The blue in the green economy is an emerging term that speaks of the importance of water and wetlands in the green economy. The research sought to assess the extent of wetland degradation with respect to land use change, particularly housing and agriculture developments in Belvedere North and Epworth, Harare, Zimbabwe. The research made two important findings. Firstly, both the Belvedere North and Epworth wetlands have been severely degraded by anthropogenic activities, with housing developments and urban agriculture as the major contributors of this degradation. The development of residential properties in the wetlands results from the high demand for residential space in Harare. Secondly, the research found that wetland degradation was closely linked to the lack of clear wetland policies both at national and local levels. The study concludes that an integrated land use approach has the potential of minimising wetland loss and degradation.
Implications of climate change risks on rural-urban agricultural and food flows in Blantyre City, MalawiSource: Journal of Public Administration 50, pp 125 –142 (2015)More Less
The study explores rural-urban linkages in order to address temporal and spatial dynamics of vulnerability to climate change at the scale of local government, focusing on Blantyre City. The study sought to assess how different groupings of urban consumers access their food and how they are impacted by climate change risks. The study established that food consumed in Blantyre City largely originates from rural areas of Blantyre District (e.g. 80% maize), some districts in the southern region, other parts of Malawi, and other countries. The food is mostly accessed through market purchase and partially own production in surrounding rural areas.
The high inter-annual rainfall variations and prolonged dry spells, which pose a major challenge for agricultural production in rural areas, affect food supplies and prices in urban markets. The occurrence impacts different urban groupings in different ways, with the disadvantaged groups being the most vulnerable because of high food costs combined with mobility constraints in searching for food. The study also established that household food security assessment at the local government level mostly links quantities of food in markets with household stocks, regardless of variations in the purchasing power of different categories of urban food consumers. The study recommends that the local government should recognise the significance of urban people's vulnerability to climate change and variability linked to rural-urban agricultural and food flows and that city development policies should cushion food insecurity at local levels.
A pro-poor strategy for the emerging green economy : a case study of Marubini multi-purpose women's co-operative biogas project in Maila, Limpopo, South AfricaSource: Journal of Public Administration 50, pp 143 –156 (2015)More Less
The greatest challenge facing many governments is the improvement of the levels of socio-economic development in their respective countries, providing better life and improved standard of living to their people. Energy plays a central role in development and the reduction of poverty. The emerging green economy is therefore envisaged to bring about changes in the patterns of production and consumption, in order to lower damaging environmental consequences, while addressing poverty and inequality. The objectives of this paper are, firstly, to review South African policies relevant to the green economy and show the extent of social development considerations and secondly, to illustrate through the case of Maila how a pro-poor, socially-inclusive renewable natural resource-driven green economy initiative may be achieved for rural communities. The methods employed in this research include policy review and a case study of biogas project implementation and evaluation. Review of the policies reflects a commitment towards a socially responsive green economy. The Maila case study, on the other hand, shows a significant saving on gas and firewood. Through targeted interventions driven by rural women, it is possible to take advantage of the emerging green economy to address social development issues.
Author W. KalanziSource: Journal of Public Administration 50, pp 157 –171 (2015)More Less
Wetland resources in Uganda are estimated to occupy 10% of the total area of the country. The Government of Uganda is a signatory and a contracting party to the Ramsar Convention on Wetlands, which requires governments to conserve and sustainably use these resources. In order to ensure effective conservation of all environment resources, local governments were mandated to protect and regulate the environment resources within their jurisdiction. However, it has been observed that in districts such as Wakiso, most wetlands have been reclaimed and put under intensive cultivation, excavation and construction. They have been destroyed through the creation of farmlands, and mining of clay and sand for building and construction purposes. This paper seeks to examine the contribution of local governments in the conservation of wetlands in Uganda, using Wakiso District Local Government as a case study. The paper also aims at identifying the challenges faced by local governments in the management of these resources. The findings revealed the following contributions made by Wakiso local government in the conservation of wetlands: screening of development projects, training in natural resource management, community sensitisation, and establishment of wetland management committees, and the formation of wetland user groups. The challenges faced in the conservation of wetlands in Wakiso include the question of wetland ownership, policy failure, population pressure, and demand for agricultural land. The paper recommends the following strategies: strict enforcement of laws and policies, continuous environmental education at community level, vigorous appraisal of technical proposals on wetlands, harmonisation of the tenure system on wetlands, and demarcating of wetland.