Thobisa Simelane

The War On Whaling

War on Whaling

Often in international news it is reported that not-for-profit organisations such as Greenpeace and Sea Shepherd were in an altercation with Japanese whalers at sea. Organisations such as these make it their business to protect whales from being killed by human beings. Talking to my sister and her friends the other day, I realised that not many people understand the importance of eradicating whaling. In actual fact, many are much more prepared to brand these activist organisations as whale cultists. Whales form a very important part of marine life, such that senseless killing of these sea mammals must be prevented…. read more

Taking Advantage of Rain

Heavy rains in Africa

Summer is upon Swaziland, and summer rains are in abundance with rains experienced five days in a week on average. This article is dedicated to the many Swazi homes that have made a change and decided to take full advantage of the season. Many Swazi homes in both rural and urban areas have installed external water tanks for water recycling purposes. It seems that the average Swazi has heeded the call to save tap water by using tap water for domestic purposes that do not necessarily require tap water. These water tanks are strategically placed where the roof gutter deposits rain… read more

Land Preservation Critical

Town development in Africa

The importance of land as an environmental medium cannot be overstated. Land is the platform upon which every living thing primes its existence on. It brings forth the food we eat, and it provides good foundation for building shelter. It is therefore that land be protected by any means necessary. The government of Swaziland has recognized the importance and necessity to preserve land, particularly prime arable land. In the Manzini region there is an area known as Malkerns, this area is well known for its fertile land and the fact that it is well drained. Recognizing that owners of that… read more

Still Reliant on Nature

Travelling for traditional medicine

Traditional medicine is still used in many African communities in the present day. The blending of numerous herbs is usually a science not recorded in text books, but passed on from one traditional healer to another through either apprenticeships or informal training. Although western medicine is available in most communities, there are still people who prefer to use traditional medicine for many reasons including religious beliefs and economic circumstances. As mentioned above, traditional healers generally do not have any form of formal training. However the process of blending the medicine they use is quite complex in that it involves a… read more

Responsible Fireworks Use

Responsible Fireworks

The year is almost over, and if the Mayan prophecy is wrong we will soon be celebrating the dawn of the impending New Year. There are many ways in which different cultures of the world celebrate this event, relevant to this article is the universal use of fireworks. Fireworks are a beautiful spectacle to observe, the fire showers that light up the sky bring a feeling of happiness and excitement to spectators. However, we need to consider the impact that fireworks have on the environment. The first concern in this regard is the effect that fireworks have on animals, the… read more

Recycled Water Debate

Recycled water

Water is a commodity necessary to sustain life on earth. Without it the world would come to an abrupt dead halt, which is why considerable efforts are invested into water conservation methods because it has become common knowledge that fresh water is a depleting resource in many territories worldwide. Recycled water is one of most controversial topics in environmental law and policy formulation, as it is also a viable alternative to mitigating fresh water consumption. There is often resistance towards integrating recycled water into drinking water. Recently, the people of Ethekwini (otherwise known as Durban) in South Africa are one… read more

Noise Pollution

Noise pollution affects animals

Noise pollution is a phenomenon that is least understood by lay persons because human beings have a higher tolerance for noise than animals. What may be normal to a human being may be discomfort for animals in the wild, which is why we need to raise awareness to noise pollution vis-a-vis wildlife. Swaziland has a number of game and nature reserves spread throughout the country. These reserves are home to a variety of animal species, which if left unprotected would be under threat of extinction from hunting and disease. In and around the reserves, there are road signs that caution drivers… read more

Exploiting Nature’s Gifts

Resource conservation

There is no doubt that we live in an age rich with possibility and opportunity is in abundance. The ability to generate a significant amount of income in a short period of time has led to the unprecedented levels of consumption that the world is experiencing currently. High levels of resource consumption are largely to blame for the resource shortage that the world is experiencing today. Exploiting the gifts brought forth by nature in an unsustainable manner robs the future of any hope for human, plant and animal survival. When one considers the effects of resource shortage today, it becomes… read more

Prepaid Electricity Bills

Benefits of prepaying electricity bills

For the longest time, the Swaziland Electricity Company has used the traditional billing system whereby the company sends a monthly electricity bill to consumers through the postal service. Recently, the utility company embarked on a countrywide project in which it completely abandoned the aforementioned system for prepaid electricity. Prepaid electricity brings much needed hope in energy conservation and alternative energy sources in that, consumers no longer have the luxury of grace periods which allowed them to compound or accumulate a bill while continuing to consume electricity. The consumer is now forced to be vigilant and careful as to the amount… read more

Green Engineering

Development in Africa

Swaziland like most African states is a developing economy with ambitions of attaining first world country status in the future. These ambitions are pursued in numerous ways, one of which is the improvement of infrastructure in the country. The improvement of infrastructure includes numerous construction and excavation projects throughout the country. Currently, the iron ore deposits are being mined, a new international airport is under construction, new tarred roads are being built, electricity is being made accessible to remote areas, and water pipes are being installed to ensure that rural communities also have access to water. All these projects are meant to increase the economic standing of the… read more