Between science and society: Northern Cape communities struggle with the telescope in their backyards

“Will the SKA affect pregnancies in the area?” The question comes in Afrikaans, in a rough voice belonging to someone who has lived a much longer, harder life than this middle-aged man appears to have lived. We’re in Vanwyksvlei, in the Northern Cape. Outside the last light is draining from the timeless Hantam Karoo landscape.…

Why South Africa is finding it difficult to wean itself off coal

South Africa has made domestic and international commitments to climate change mitigation. But the country continues to depend on coal-fired power plants, which provide 92% of its electricity. A key challenge for the country in dealing with electricity shortages is that the bulk of power comes from coal, which is harmful for the environment and…

Hunting in Africa: to ban or not to ban is the question

Hunting has long been a highly controversial activity, whether as a sport (leisure or recreational), for commercial purposes or if done for cultural reasons. African countries that legalise hunting activities experience scrutiny around their conservation efforts, and how much money they make from it. In an article in The Conversation Africa,  Nkabeng Maruping-Mzileni, a lecturer…

Friday round-up on crowdCaster

We’re excited to announce that we’re putting up round-ups about science in South Africa on crowdCaster, a new platform for short-form sound-bites. It’s like a podcast with ADHD! Every Friday, we’ll try to post a short summary (the format allows a maximum clip of 140 seconds)  of what we covered during the week and why…