Articles Posted in the Green News category

Safe to swim? Durban puts water quality info online

August 5, 2008
Posted in Green News

North Beach © eThekwini Municipality

Earlier this year, four of Durban’s beaches lost their Blue Flag status because of unacceptable faecal pollution readings. But the eThekwini Municipality appears to be working to reassure beach bunnies who may be worried about whether the beaches are safe for swimming. Water quality information at 26 beaches is now available on the municipality’s website.

The water at these beaches is tested weekly for Escherichia coli (E. coli) and Enterococcus, which are both indicators of faecal contamination, and the results are posted on the site along with a comment on whether the results are poor, moderate, good or excellent.

Beaches with excellent water quality are marked with a happy little fish logo, which appears next to 17 of the 26 beaches listed. Read more

Toyota spends millions on solar power in Durban

April 29, 2008
Posted in Business, Renewable energy, Transport

Toyota‘s manufacturing plant in Durban is installing solar energy in a R3.5-million project that is expected to save the company R95,000 a month on energy costs, according a media release.

The car manufacturer had already installed 150 solar panels by June 2007 and has plans to install another 120 of them. So, by the end of 2008, Toyota will have installed 270 solar panels into its Durban plant, says the release.

It does not specify how much electricity the solar panels will generate or what percentage of the plant’s total electricity consumption the solar power will replace. But it does say that “the company’s Prospecton plant in Durban used electricity and gas to heat water, it will now use energy converted from the sun as a source of heat.”

The solar panels will allow the car manufacturer to lower its carbon dioxide emissions by about 1,350 tons a year.

It will also help to reduce the impact of Eskom’s “load shedding” on the company’s operations.