Responding to the State of the Nation Address delivered by President Zuma this evening Greenpeace Africa has said:

 “It is disheartening that the President continues to show a complete lack of leadership in adequately tackling the key environmental issues plaguing South Africa. During the State of the Nation Address, President Zuma failed to provide sustainable solutions to combat the severe drought that is currently decimating our already water scarce country. The President did not mention the obvious connection between the looming water crisis facing South Africa and the country’s continued dependence on coal, or the effect that coal power is having in driving extreme weather events such as the current drought. The Government’s continued denial of the real and everyday impacts that the drought is having on South Africa is both worrying and aberrant, as South Africa’s leadership continues to ignore the everyday struggles of the country’s citizens. What South Africa desperately needs now is leadership that will turn away from fossil fuels and set the country on a path towards a 100% renewable energy future, which does not compromise the country’s scarce water resources.

Greenpeace further believes that the President’s commitment to forge ahead with nuclear is indicative of the short-sightedness of the current leadership. Greenpeace Africa once again calls on the President to show leadership by ensuring that the necessary cost analysis, environment impact assessment and suitability of the technology are reviewed instead of plunging South Africa down a dead end to nowhere with nuclear.”

Notes to the Editor:

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 Mbong Akiy Fokwa Tsafack, Senior Communications Manager, Greenpeace Africa: [email protected], 0716881274

Angela Karnein, Media Officer, Greenpeace Africa: [email protected]: 0725608700