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Africas
Outside it has become night. In front of the windows of one of Abuja’s grandest hotels, the pool shines turquoise blue. Finally, the phone rings. It is the hotel’s front desk, announcing a guest. The man who comes into the room, hours late for the scheduled appointment, is named Umaru Potiskum. He is an art...
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COMMENT Africa faces an energy crisis, with a 2019 report estimating that 44% of its 1.35-billion population does not have access to electricity.  This is concerning, especially when one considers that alternative energy sources, such as solar energy, which could be a viable solution for the continent, started gaining global mainstream popularity since 2005.  Despite...
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It’s the best part of Dr Els Vermeulen’s year: three days, up in an Airbus ECI20B, counting southern right whales in South Africa’s coastal waters.    “The views are beautiful,” says the research manager of the whale unit at the University of Pretoria about the annual aerial survey of southern right whales between Nature’s Valley and...
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Cabbages and Kings is a novel written more than a century ago by O Henry, in which he coins the phrase “banana republic”. Originally, the phrase described a country controlled by foreign companies that exploit its natural resources and the working class. Over the years, it has developed to mean any country that is led...
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South Africa’s gross domestic product (GDP) has fallen for the fourth consecutive quarter, putting the country in a severe recession, Statistics SA announced on Tuesday. The GDP fell by just over 16.4% between the first quarter and second quarter of 2020, resulting in an annualised growth rate of -51%.  The plummet has been attributed to...
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South African president Cyril Ramaphosa’s despatch of envoys to Zimbabwe in a bid to defuse the latest crisis, in which the government has engaged in a vicious crackdown on opponents, journalists and the freedoms of speech, association and protest, has been widely welcomed. Such has been the brutality of the latest assault on human rights...
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COMMENT Reducing the environmental impact of the energy value chain through lower methane (CH4) emissions is a key component of the International Energy Agency’s (IEA) sustainable development scenario 2018-2030. The international oil and gas industry accounts for one fifth of methane emissions caused by humans and the global warming potential of one tonne of methane...
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