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Community perceptions about climate change in iLembe district municipality.

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The country has experienced significant climatic shocks over recent years. Water is the primary medium through which the impact of climate change is going to be felt in South Africa. As one of the world’s top CO2 emitters, this reflects a political commitment to ensuring that the country transitions to a low-carbon economy. Successfully navigating this transition will require a nuanced understanding of public opinion and behaviour, in order for policy processes to take account of individual preferences, concerns, and lived realities. This study used political ecology, and the stakeholder engagement theory into understanding and examine the phenomenon of climate change and considered the link between governance. This was highlighted in order to reveal the missing mechanisms of governance that would help public organizations and other stakeholders to take on joint responsibility for the impacts of climate change. The study also focused on the relationship between beliefs about climate change, concerns about climate change as well as personal norms and efficacy beliefs. An investigation into the Ilembe District has been provided and served as a departure point from which to critically examine the governance around water management and climate change attitudes in Noodsburg, Ilembe district municipality. The study employed a qualitative research design. New data on this topic was collected via focus groups which consisted of South Africans 18 years and older living in ward 6 Noodsburg. Face-to-face semi-structured interviews were conducted with ILembe District municipality officials in the environmental and planning units. The study provides insights into the understanding of Noodsburg community members’ attitudes toward climate change. The findings revealed that the community members in Noodsburg identified a range of expected adverse effects over the coming decades, particularly water shortages and drought, food shortages, and higher temperatures. These findings have relevance to climate change communication in the country, and matter for ongoing policy interventions that are striving to minimise the human development consequences of climate change. The study concludes with a discussion of the implications of these findings and recommendations for crafting effective climate change frameworks and policy interventions in South Africa in the coming years.


Doctoral Degree. University of KwaZulu-Natal, Durban.