Description: The South Durban Basin Multi-Point Plan (SDB-MPP) was established in 2000 to deal with air pollution management at the local government level. R30 million was invested in this project. The objectives of the project were to determine the health risks and environmental risks of the area and formulate a plan to reduce dirty fuels with the help of a policy review and within a legal framework. The project's success was based on taking a multi-stakeholder approach, including the community, local business, and different departments of government at the local, provincial and national levels. This partnership included funding from all levels of government, as well as business and international institutions.
Innovation: One of the most effective results of this project was the approach taken, whereby data was collected, interpreted and solutions acted on, on an ongoing basis. This allowed adjustments to be made while the project was progressing and resulted in it achieving success quickly and efficiently. The establishment of a website, which details the statistics and results of the project, has been set up to make the important information available to range of interested parties. The multi-dimensional approach adopted by this project is particularly innovative.
Effectiveness: The greatest testament to the success of the project was that it laid the foundation for the Air Quality Management Act of 2005. The project's major achievement has been a 45% reduction in sulphur dioxide emissions. This has seen improved health conditions for the surrounding neighbourhoods and improved environmental conditions for the Durban area at large.
Poverty Impact: The improved air quality has helped reduce potential health problems for poor households. During studies done before the projects inception, many ailments linked to dirty air conditions were found. The improvements made due to this project reduce potentially high medical expenses and loss of productivity due to ailments such as asthma and other problems related to poor air quality.
Sustainability: This project has created a unique institutional sustainability by training a new group of scientists and technical staff, who are equipped to carry out this and other such projects. This was not previously a reality. The financial security of the project is continually being attended to and they will not only receive local funding in the years to come but also from the international institution DANIDA.
Replication: This project has established a very good framework for replication. All activities have been documented and a very scientific methodology has been adopted. If similar funding and staffing capacity is established elsewhere, this project can be replicated.