Deputy Minister Thomson announces winers of R18 Million rand prizes for Greenest Municipality Competition

14 August 2018

The Deputy Minister of Environmental Affairs Ms Barbara Thomson has unveiled the winners of the 8th  Greenest Municipality Competition (GMC), with the City of eThekwini Metropolitan Municipality and the Swartland Local Municipality being crowned the greenest municipalities in South Africa, after winning the overall prizes in the Metro and Local categories, respectively.

The overall winners will receive R3.5 million; first runners up R3 million and the second runners up R2.5 million each, which will be given through funding of infrastructure projects aimed at protection of the environment. The prize is tied to implementation of Waste, Climate Change and Green Economy related projects that also create job opportunities for local communities.

Speaking at the awards ceremony on Tuesday night, Deputy Minister Thomson acknowledged the important role of municipalities in providing service delivery through public transport service, provision of electricity and waste management.

The Department of Environmental Affairs has identified was sector as key role player in achieving the goal of economic upliftment through job creation. It is for this reason that the Department is currently implement the National Waste Management Strategy, which aims to grow the waste economy in South Africa.

It is through the National Waste Management Strategy that government is geared to divert waste from landfill sites. “Moving waste away from landfills provides considerable social, economic and environmental opportunities as we take steps to adapt to climate change, job creation and enterprise development. This will not only provide access to valuable resources through development of the Circular Economy, but provide benefits such as reducing the environmental and social impacts of waste,” said Deputy Minister Thomson.  

“I am encouraged by the fact that more and more South African municipalities are embracing the green economy by implementing long term sustainability policies and strategies in partnership with local communities. This is an important development for our country because it demonstrates an increasing awareness and realization that our prosperity as a country is inextricably connected to the wellbeing of our environment,” said Deputy Minister Thomson.

The awards ceremony was preceded by clean-up activities which aimed to raise awareness about the impact of plastic pollution on the environment and oceans. It was during the clean-up activities that Deputy Minister Thomson called on all South Africans to lead a healthy life in a clean environment that will not harm wellbeing, by keeping the environment in a good state for the benefit of the current and the future generations.

Deputy Minister Thomson was joined by the Mpumalanga MEC for Agriculture, Rural Development, Land and Environmental Affairs Mr Vusi Shongwe and the Mayor of eThekwini Councillor Zandile Gumede.


eThekwini Metropolitan Municipality First prize R 3.5 million
City of Cape Town Metropolitan Municipality Second prize R 3 million
Nelson Mandela Bay Metropolitan Municipality Third prize R 2.5 million
Swartland Local Municipality First prize R 3.5 million
Tzaneen Local Municipality Second prize R 3 million
Umlazi Local Municipality Third prize R 2.5 million

Download » Deputy Minister's speech to the GMC award ceremny.

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