Collective exploration of the impact of restoration in the Baviaanskloof through the lens of the Water, Energy, and Food Nexus

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Liezl le Roux

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The Baviaanskloof catchment in the Eastern Cape of South Africa encompasses the Kouga and Baviaanskloof mountains and is comprised of private farms surrounded by the largest wilderness area in South Africa. The catchment is a source of water for the agriculturally significant Gamtoos Valley as well as the Nelson Mandela Bay municipal area. As part of the Cape Floristic Region, it boasts an enormous botanical diversity and forms a meeting place of different biomes. Decades of overgrazing from goat farming has led to massive vegetation loss and soil erosion. We employ the 4 returns framework for large scale ecosystem restoration: each restored area provides inspirational, social, and natural returns to bring down the risks for a sustainable financial return. This transformative model combines ‘restoring’ people’s inner drivers and purpose seeking to concrete ecosystem restoration on the ground, based on business cases, using a landscape zoning approach and the Theory U (Otto Scharmer) as a stakeholder management tool. We aim to address ecological challenges such as water retention, social challenges such as effective governance and economic challenges such as diversification of income. Through participation in this session we will further explore the impact of our work in the Baviaanskloof through the Food, Energy, and Water Nexus lens. We will share examples illustrating the benefits and avoided the costs of restoration interventions, highlighting the interlinkages we have observed within the Food, Energy and Water Nexus.

Resource Type:
Audio/Video, Conference Presentation, SER2019

Society for Ecological Restoration