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SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT

The City of Cape Town is committed to tackling climate change challenges.

Globally climate change causes drought, floods, storms and sea surges and heat waves. These have a destructive impact on people’s health, homes, food security, natural assets and livelihood support networks. This results in social dislocation and large-scale financial loss. The first people to usually suffer these consequences are the poor, who are most likely to live in areas at risk.

How is Cape Town affected?

  • A decrease in annual average rainfall and changed seasonality of rainfall, negatively affecting water resources and biodiversity: Cape Town is currently experiencing severe drought/water scarcity conditions – these drought conditions have never been seen in Cape Town before – which means that water conservation and demand management has become a priority for everybody in Cape Town;
  • An increase in mean annual temperature: higher maximum temperatures, more hot days, and more frequent and intense heat waves;
  • An increase in average wind and maximum wind strength; and
  • An increase in both the intensity and frequency of storms: short, high intensity rainfall events and increased size and duration of coastal storms. As a city with one of the longest coast lines, we also face extreme vulnerability to rising sea levels and the associated impact on low-lying urban and coastal environments

How is Cape Town affected?

The City of Cape Town is committed to tackling climate change challenges, contributing to global efforts to reduce GHG emissions and building a more resource-efficient and resilient future for our city.

The City has a long and well recognised past as a leading city in South Africa in local energy and climate planning and action, being the first African city to complete a State of Energy Report in 2001 (updated in 2007, 2011, 2015) and adopt an Energy and Climate Change Strategy (2006). The City has also adopted the Energy and Climate Action Plan (2010), the Climate Change Policy (2017) and made associated institutional changes. The City actively engages in international climate networks and reporting platforms.

In 2015 the City of Cape Town adopted the Cape Town Energy2040 Goal, with its associated energy and carbon reduction targets. The Energy2040 Goal, which models a more resilient, resource efficient and equitable future for Cape Town, commits the City to diversifying Cape Town’s energy supply, becoming significantly more energy efficient and reducing carbon emissions.

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