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The Green Book

Adapting South Africa's settlements for the future

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Council for Scientific and Industrial Research

25 March 2021



Willemien van Niekerk


Council for Scientific and Industrial Research


A growing number of South Africans in cities and towns are set to be exposed to the adverse impacts of weather-induced natural hazards, which threaten livelihoods, increase vulnerability, and undermine hard-earned development gains. To address this growing challenge, contribute to proactive disaster risk reduction and reduce the losses experienced from climate disasters, the Green Book was established as an open-access online planning support tool and made public in March 2019.

The Green Book provides scientific evidence, tools and resources in support of local government’s pursuit to plan and design climate-resilient, hazard-resistant settlements. Mainstreaming and embedding this rich and dense source of information and tools into local government planning policies, plans, processes and systems requires up-take, buy-in and extensive capacity development.


The Green Book contains a range of tools and resources that demonstrate the likely impacts that climate change and urbanisation will have on South Africa’s cities and towns. These include:

     1. Story Maps

     2. The Municipal Risk Profile Tool

     3. The Adaptation Actions Tool

     4. GreenBook MetroView


To ensure the Green Book is utilised to its fullest extent, a new partnership between the CSIR, Santam, the Department of Environmental, Forestry and Fisheries and the National Disaster Management Centre, has been established to support the testing, roll-out, training and uptake of the Green Book in municipalities. The Green Book partners call upon the relevant industry and public sector departments to join this initiative and secure a more resilient future for all South Africans.




Website References


Built environment

Climate Change/Resilience

Disaster mitigation

Environmental impact

Environmental management

Environmental protection

Green Book

Human settlements


Natural environment

Settlement planning

Settlement regions

South Africa



Urban areas

Urban development

Urban growth

Urban population


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