DURBAN (Reuters) – Almost 200 nations began global climate talks on Monday with time running out to save the Kyoto Protocol aimed at cutting the greenhouse gas emissions scientists blame for rising sea levels, intense storms, drought and crop failures.
Countries have been at loggerheads for years and hopes are slim of any major progress, despite increasingly dire warnings from climate scientists. Diplomats also wonder whether host South Africa is up to the challenge of brokering the tough negotiations that run until December 9 in Durban.
JOHANNESBURG (Reuters) – South Africa’s state-owned power utility Eskom wants to greatly expand its grid beyond its borders, bringing energy security to fast emerging southern Africa by building lines and plants and tapping the region’s vast green energy sources.
But first, it must take care of problems at home that include building new power stations for Africa’s largest economy and reducing its carbon footprint by ending an almost exclusive reliance on coal, its CEO Brian Dames said on Friday.
MAPUTO (Reuters) – The board of Brazil’s Vale (VALE5.SA: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) has approved a $6 billion expansion of its Moatize coal project in Mozambique to lift output to 22 million tons per year from the 11 million tons it expects to mine initially, a company official said.
Marcelo Matos, general manager for marketing and sales at Vale’s coal unit, told a coal conference in Maputo on Tuesday that first production from the expanded mine is forecast for the second half of 2014.
MAPUTO, Nov 22 (Reuters) – Mozambique is “happy” with
the strength of the metical, the world’s best-performing
currency this year against the dollar, and has no plans at the
moment to weaken it, Finance Minister Manuel Chang said on
Chang also told Reuters the war-scarred southern African
nation was considering launching a debut international bond to
fund an ambitious infrastructure programme, although external
conditions were not favourable at the moment.
JOHANNESBURG (Reuters) – South Africa’s environment minister does not expect countries to agree on a legally binding climate deal in Durban at the end of the month but does expect the talks at least to help retain the Kyoto protocol framework and move discussions forward.
South Africa will host international negotiators in the port city between November 28 and December 9 to work on a new global climate pact to succeed the Kyoto protocol, but expectations are low as rifts from previous summits continue.
JOHANNESBURG, Nov 3 (Reuters) – Higher electricity, raw
material costs and weaker sales pushed ArcelorMittal South
Africa into a third-quarter loss, but the unit of the
world’s top steelmaker forecast some improvement in
the current three months.
Weakening demand and high input costs have been pressuring
the $500 billion a year global steel industry, along with
tightening monetary policy in China and the threat of a
recession in developed markets in Europe and the United States.
JOHANNESBURG, Oct 26 (Reuters) – South Africa’s logistics
group Transnet has been moving coal to the Richards
Bay Coal Terminal at record rates in recent months, showing the
market that it may be turning the corner and reversing years of
Chief Executive Brian Molefe said on Wednesday that the
company had recently managed to move 1.6 million tonnes of coal
per week and expected to keep up the pace, while exports from
the terminal had been around 1.4 million tonnes.
JOHANNESBURG, Oct 25 (Reuters) – South Africa’s National
Union of Mineworkers (NUM) agreed with Xstrata to
resolve within seven days a dispute, over a share ownership
plan, that has disrupted production of coal and alloys for more
than a week, the union and the government said on Tuesday.
Thousands of workers have been on strike at the company’s
South African operations, demanding equal compensation under the
proposed employee share ownership programme, regardless of rank.
Xstrata’s plan was to compensate employees based on their level.
LONDON/JOHANNESBURG, Oct 21 (Reuters) – A U.N. committee has
completed the draft design of a fund to help developing
countries tackle climate change, paving the way for its launch
in 2013, the U.N.’s climate chief said on Friday.
Last year, countries agreed to create the ‘Green Climate
Fund’ to channel up to $100 billion a year by 2020 to help
developing countries fight climate change.
LONDON (Reuters) – A U.N. committee has completed the draft design of a fund to help developing countries tackle climate change, paving the way for its launch in 2013, the U.N.’s climate chief said on Friday.
Last year, countries agreed to create the ‘Green Climate Fund’ to channel up to $100 billion a year by 2020 to developing countries to help fight climate change.