It takes many people to satisfy the needs of a community. The EcoCity Trust and the City of Johannesburg would like to thank the following supporters for their continued commitment and contributions to the Johannesburg Initiative and its ongoing programme of providing ecologically and economically sound solutions to the problems of the developing world.
- Anglo American Young Managers Fund
- ARUP Engineering
- Bioregional UK
- Canada Fund for Local Initiatives
- City of Johannesburg departments and utilities
- COPAC (Co-operatives and Policy and Alternative Centre)
- DBSA (Development Bank of South Africa)
- Department of Environmental Affairs and Tourism (DEAT)
- Department of Transport
- Department of Welfare
- DFID (Department for International Development)
- Dome Space
- Earthcote Paints
- EarthLife Africa
- Food and Trees for Africa
- Global Forest Products
- Green Inc
- Greenhouse Project
- IIEC (International Institute of Energy Conservation)
- Johannesburg Development Agency
- Johannesburg Property Company
- Kaytech Engineered Fabrics
- Lafarge Cement
- Recycle UK
- Rupert Family Foundation
- SEED (Sustainable Energy Environment Development)
- Sustainable Energy and Climate Change Partnership (SECCP)
- Swiss-South African Co-operation Initiative
- Technikon of the Witwatersrand
- The Body Shop
- UNDP - Life
- WWF (World Wide Fund for Nature)
- Photographs by: Cedric Nunn and Peter McKenzie/TWASA
Johannesburg mayor Amos Masondo calls EcoCity a unique example of sustainable development. And the city also recognises that what the project provides is a way forward. “EcoCity is located in one of 89 informal settlements in the city,” he says. “It has wider implications for the rest of the city.” EcoCity, with its partnership approach, offers a way for the mayor to replicate the manner in which it merges green and brown imperatives in a time when public resources are limited, but needs seem infinite. Green issues refer to ecologically friendly ways of living, while brown issues describe the economic elements which underpin wellbeing, including economic development and job creation.
The two sets of issues are often presented as mutually exclusive, while EcoCity shows this needn't always be the case. “It's pioneered among the poorest of the poor,” explains the mayor, who has been a regular visitor to Ivory Park, the community in which the project is based. Johannesburg is a core supporter of EcoCity and gives the project office space — making concrete the private partnership between the NGO sector, community and the council. The city’s support gives the EcoCity project the political weight necessary to draw in support from provincial and national spheres of government.
Because EcoCity is an NGO, it also maintains links with the community. What EcoCity provided the city with, says Masondo, was a commitment and idea that was homegrown and which the administration could support. Such co-responsibility is essential for any successful development plan. “Government as government alone would never be able to do this. Government working alone can never address the great needs of our people,” says the mayor. Ultimately, co-ops should be a key means of ensuring food security, a vital element of sustainable development.
The Johannesburg EcoCity programme is located within the Department of Development Planning, Transport and Environment. This is an excellent place within which to house such a programme as it cuts across all aspects of development. “The concept of the EcoCity looks at development in a different way, a way that allows us to address both economic growth and ecological sustainability at the same time,” says Flora Mokgohloa, the Director of Environment in the Department. In particular she is pleased with the way the programme promotes women when jobs are created and the focus on the youth is of paramount importance to the City.