Industries in the North West province now have access to a more sustainable waste disposal option, which promises to provide small companies with business opportunities stemming from these waste streams. This is as the province witnessed the launch the Industrial Symbiosis (IS) programme on Wednesday, 28 February 2024.

As of 2011, South Africa is estimated to generate 108 million tonnes of waste, with 98 million tonnes (or 90%) being disposed of in landfills. IS is a globally recognised methods that promotes circularity, diverts waste from landfills and creates entrepreneurship opportunities by facilitating synergetic relationships between companies with underutilised resources and those requiring these resources for producing other goods.

In 2022, an estimated 215 000 tonnes of waste were diverted from landfills through IS initiatives in South Africa. The waste is used by other entities, often small and micro enterprises, as inputs for various products and processes.

Victor Manavhela, the NCPC-SA National Programme Manager, said, “Building a circular economy through IS is crucial for achieving a just, equitable and sustainable society, as well as for levelling the playing field for start-ups and small companies.”

“The NCPC-SA is currently implementing this innovative reuse and recycling solution in seven provinces: Gauteng, KwaZulu-Natal, Limpopo, Northern Cape, Free State, Mpumalanga and the Eastern Cape. Each programme has demonstrated its value, bolstering provincial economies, fostering partnerships between government and industry, and cultivating new industries and emerging entrepreneurs.”

Companies who wish to participate in the programme can contact ncpc@csir.co.za.