Green Economy – Circular Economy – Secondary Resources Economy…. Are We Talking About the Same Thing

Moderator: Mr Sibonelo Radebe, The Conversation

Panelist: Prof Ervin Balazs

Panelist: Prof Diane  Hildebrandt, Unisa

Panelist: Dr Lauren Basson, GreenCape

Panelist: Mr Pat Pillai, LifeCo Unltd

The concepts of a Green Economy, circular economy and secondary resources economy have gained global traction in recent years. Many countries have developed green economy strategies to respond to this initiative and use it as a means of addressing low carbon or climate change interventions. In recent years the concept of a Circular Economy has also come to dominate the environmental discourse. Circular economy refers to closing the loop and being more resource efficient, and has mostly been applied in the management of solid waste. Similarly, the Secondary Resources Economy is a popular concept, which refers to what is perceived as waste actually being seen as a resource with economic value. On closer inspection these three concepts are very similar and may in fact only be words expressed differently but having the same meaning and leading to a similar outcome. This session will seek to: – Understand these concepts and there similarities and differences – Understand the value that this concepts provide in a South African context – Assess how South Africa is internalising these concepts in practise

Mr Sibonelo Radebe, The Conversation

Sibonelo Radebe has been a journalist for about 20 years with a greater focus on business and economy areas. He has worked for national titles in South Africa such as the Business Day, Financial Mail and The New Age and was intimately involved in the establishment of niche new media titles like ProBonoMatters, and SATopShops. Prior to joining The Conversation Africa, he worked for the National Empowerment Fund, a South African development finance institution.


Dr Lauren Basson, GreenCape

Manager: Technical and Knowledge

Lauren Basson is GreenCape’s Manager: Technical and Knowledge. In this capacity she provides strategic and technical support to GreenCape’s energy, water, waste and agriculture programmes, and co-ordinates their knowledge generating activities. In addition, Lauren’s role is to broker links to knowledge and innovation institutions to support GreenCape activities and those of its member companies. Lauren holds a BSc and MSc degrees in Chemical Engineering from the University of Cape Town, South Africa and a PhD in Chemical Engineering from the University of Sydney, Australia. Prior to joining GreenCape in 2013, Lauren worked industry and academia in South Africa, Australia and the United Kingdom



Mr Pat Pillai, LifeCo Unltd

Pat Pillai is a businessman and entrepreneur.

Born and raised on the Cape Flats, he’s been an entrepreneur since he was a teenager – both in the private and social sectors. Today he has interests in property and private venture capital, built over 25 years.

As a social impact entrepreneur (Ashoka Globalizer Fellow), he established LifeCo UnLtd SA 20 years ago. LifeCo UnLtd is a founder member of GSEN (50+ member nations<> ). LifeCo has an asset base of $10m, has distributed just over $10m in impact capital and has a $5m Impact Fund. It has interests in Renewable Energy Projects, Green Architecture and Social Venture Capital. It tackles inequality and believes in growing social capital. It was voted among the top 10 most trusted and admired Social Enterprises in South Africa by Ask Africa.

LifeCo UnLtd has benefited over 112 000 beneficiaries in SA (5000 are Young Entrepreneurs; 124 are established entrepreneurs, of those 76 are impact/social entrepreneurs).<>

Pat has also worked in media management and as a News Anchor for SABC 3 and ETV News – over a collective 15 years.

He is father to Vaughn.

By | 2017-12-05T14:27:50+00:00 October 9th, 2017|