Ecoleges is a small, but robust privately-owned environmental consultancy based in Mpumalanga.
The founding of Ecoleges at the time of fundamental environmental legislative changes in 2006 was no coincidence. The founders saw an opportunity to be more than ambassadors of the environment, and actively implement the principles of sustainable development.
Its members compounded their scientific understanding and experience of ecosystem functioning within the legal framework and international standards, such as the ISO 14001: 2004 EMS, to formulate a holistic and comprehensive consultancy that adds value and best practice to any project.
Since 2006, Ecoleges has endeavoured to provide cost-effective services, whilst offering the same peace-of-mind as a larger consultancy.
The latter is maintained through:
- professional affiliations (the Southern African Auditor and Training Certification
Association – SAATCA; the Grassland Society of Southern Africa – GSSA; the
International Association for Impact Assessment – IAIAsa Mpumalanga),
- professional registrations (the South African Council for Natural Scientific Professions – SACNASP)
- professional indemnity, and
- continual professional development (CPD)
Co-founder of Ecoleges and Senior Consultant
Justin Bowers holds a Masters degree in Nature Conservation, as well as completing various other courses in the field of environmental management and aquaculture. Justin spent 6 years at the Mammal Research Institute of the University of Pretoria based in the Kruger National Park (KNP), and was involved in research on the effects of Bovine Tuberculosis (BTB) in the KNP Buffalo population.
Justin also worked for SANParks’ KNP Scientific Services for a year, assisting various scientists in their respective research fields. He spent three years in the Sabi-Sand Game Reserve primarily involved in habitat management.
Justin undertakes Water Use License Applications and environmental assessments (EAP), monitoring (ECO) and auditing (Auditor), specialist studies (Ecologist) and planning (Consultant) including Rehabilitation and Environmental Management.
Plans/Programmes (EMP/EMPr). His background in Bovine Tuberculosis research provides valuable insight into the compilation of buffalo disease management reports. Justin is a registered practitioner with the South African Council for Natural Scientific Professions and serves on several committees including: The International Association for Impact Assessment (IAIAsa) – Mpumalanga (Provincial Chair), Elands River Catchment Water Users Association (ERCWUA) (Committee Member), Mpumalanga Trout Forum (MTF, an affiliate member of the Aquaculture Association of Southern Africa (Environmental Management Sub-Committee) and, the Grassland Society of Southern Africa (GSSA) (Professional member). Justin manages the Machadodorp
Member and Senior Consultant
Shaun MacGregor completed his Masters degree in Grassland Science at the
University of Pietermaritzburg, in 2000. His research on the effects of drought and elephant on the dynamics of semi-arid African savannas culminated in two publications in recognised Journals.
His studies conjured a career in guiding for Singita Private Game Reserve. Family commitment and a desire to learn business brought Shaun to Nelspruit where he familiarised himself with all aspects of running a small business, before joining ECOLEGES in 2007. Shaun brings his experience and scientific aptitude to ably perform the role of an Environmental Consultant.
Shaun has completed courses in Environmental Management Systems (EMS) based on ISO (International Organization for Standardization) systems including ISO 14001 (Lead Auditor), ISO 19011 and ISO 17021. In addition to environmental monitoring (ECO) and auditing (Auditor) Shaun also undertakes environmental impact assessments (EIA’s) as an Environmental Assessment Practitioner (EAP), specialist studies (Ecologist) and planning (Consultant) including Rehabilitation, Emergency Preparedness, and Environmental Management Plans/Programmes. Shaun is a registered practitioner with the South African Council for Natural Scientific Professions.
Senior Environmental Control Officer
Philip Radford, holds a BSc degree in Environmental Science from the University of Plymouth, United Kingdom (UK) and a Post Graduate Diploma in Environmental Protection from Salford University, UK. Philip has completed a variety of other courses in environmental management, waste management and pollution prevention.
Philip spent most of his career in the United Kingdom working for the Environment Agency as an Environment Officer dealing with environmental audits, compliance inspections and enforcement of illegal waste operations. He relocated to South Africa in 2009 to work as an Environmental Consultant in Nelspruit before joining Ecoleges in 2011. Philip carries out environmental monitoring and auditing (ECO and Auditor) and has prospects for developing an Integrated Waste Management Planning division within Ecoleges Environmental Consultants.
Philip is a member of the Waste Management Institute of Southern Africa, IAIAsa and a committee member of the Wildlife Society of South Africa (WESSA). He is also in the process of registration with the South African Council for Natural Scientific Professions.
Junior Environmental Consultant
Hlengile is a mature and independent South African, born in Bethal, and schooled in Carolina, Mpumalanga. Apart from holding a National Diploma in Environmental Science from the Tshwane University of Technology, Hlengile has completed two other courses in Environmental Impact Assessment and is in possession of a Safety Management Training Course Certificate (SAMTRAC). After successfully completing her internship with Ecoleges, Hlengile was invited to become a valuable and indispensible part of the team.
Hlengile has gradually taken on more responsibilities as her experience and confidence has grown. Apart from performing several crucial administrative functions, Hlengile is actively involved in our Water Use License Applications and Environmental Impact Assessments. Although her focus has traditionally been on the Public Participation Process, Hlengile’s supportive role and participation in site assessments and report writing has reinforced her position as a capable and reliable junior consultant.
Hlengile is the secretary of the IAIAsa Mpumalanga branch and is in the process of registering as a Candidate EAP with the Environmental Assessment Practitioners Association of South Africa.
Environmental Compliance Support Officer
Riaan has a BSc Honours in Environmental Management & Development as well as 9 years of professional consulting experience within the Mining, Industrial and Conservation arenas; after 3 years within the mining and metals processing industry, Riaan completed a highly instructive tenure with the South African Green Fund as an Environmental Analyst stationed at the Development Bank of Southern Africa.
Riaan is currently based in the Sabi Sand Wildtuin (SSW) as an Environmental Compliance Support Officer and is responsible for, among others, supporting the SSW management in the interests of pro-active environmental management to avert non-compliance, maximise environmental performance and achieve best practice.
Assistant Environmental Officer
Georgina Wilson completed a Masters Degree in Zoology at the University of Pretoria in 2017. Her Masters project investigated connectivity within Mpumalanga’s grassland biome by using the presence of alien and invasive plant species as a broad indicator of the quality of the corridor network.
Georgina worked for Ecoleges as a Junior Site Environmental Officer on a pipeline project in Steelpoort in 2015. After a two year break to complete her Masters, Georgina returned to Steelpoort in 2018 as a Site Environmental Officer.
As the project approached completion, Georgina moved to the Sabi Sand Wildtuin, Mpumalanga to provide the services of an Environmental Compliance Support Officer and concurrently complete a short course in Environmental Law through the Centre for Environmental Management. Georgina assisted the land owners of the Sabi Sand Wildtuin with aspects of environmental management, conducted screening assessments for proposed developments within the reserve and drove the “Green Assessment” project to encourage lodges to move towards greater compliance and better environmental management practice.
Family commitments required Georgina to move to Johannesburg in 2019, but she continues to be a loyal and valued member of the Ecoleges team, currently providing administrative support for the Steelpoort pipeline project.
Site Environmental Officer
Thabiso Mathopa achieved a Bachelor of Science (BSc) in Community Water Service and Sanitation at the University of Limpopo. He then completed his BSc Honours in Environmental Management through UNISA in 2017.
Thabiso is currently working on our pipeline project in Steelpoort in his capacity as a Site Environmental Officer. He has proven to be a self-disciplined individual with a high level of commitment to his work.