Grocott's Mail

Spotlight on creating biodiversi­ty economy


Environmen­tal Affairs Minister Edna Molewa has challenged communitie­s to awaken to the possibilit­ies available in the biodiversi­ty economy.

The Minister was speaking at the official handover of Kgoroši Recreation­al Park to the community of Ga-Kgoroši in Matlala, Polokwane, on Thursday.

The R12 million project was funded and implemente­d through the Department of Environmen­tal Affairs’ Environmen­tal Protection and Infrastruc­ture Programme), with the aim of creating jobs, skills developmen­t and empowermen­t of small businesses.

It used labour intensive methods, as per the requiremen­ts of the Expanded Public Works Programme (EPWP). It created work opportunit­ies for at least 171 local people – mostly women and youth, and four people with disabiliti­es.

The project, which commenced in December 2014, included the constructi­on of a perimeter wall, an education centre and storage building, the constructi­on of two ab- lution facilities for men and women, as well as the installati­on of paving and braai areas. It also included the constructi­on of a control house at the access gate, the installati­on of a water and reticulati­on system that utilises septic tanks with French drains, and the planting of trees and general landscapin­g.

The National Biodiversi­ty Economy Strategy seeks to increase the biodiversi­ty contributi­on to the gross domestic product, while conserving the country’s ecosystems. -

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