College of Agriculture, Engineering
and Science (CAES)

Ensuring Earth’s Sustainability Through Research

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Mr Abdul Aziz Yakubu has always been aware of the effects of climate change and its effects on the earth and its inhabitants.

Motivated by the fact that climate change poses a serious threat to the survival of humanity, Yakubu decided to base his Physics Master’s research on the activities of climate change, specifically in relation to cloud formation and rainfall due to their importance in the sustainability of human. His study was focused on the effect of atmospheric pollution in the event of low rainfall and water shortages in South Africa.

‘The fact that my research afforded me a chance to search for answers to some of the challenges faced by humankind is what motivated me to pursue this topic,’ he said.

He possesses a BSc Honours (Physics) and National Diploma (ND) in Electrical/Electronic Engineering. He worked in academia and industry for several years before deciding to pursue a Master’s degree which was primarily fuelled by his passion for terrestrial and space weather.

When asked why he chose to pursue his Master’s degree at UKZN, he said, ‘I chose UKZN because of its reputation within the field of research globally. UKZN also offered me the opportunity to study in an institution full of cultural and ethnic diversity and inculcated within me a mind-set of feeling at home while enjoying the conducive and stable learning environment with the hope of being inspired to greatness’.

Yakubu is happy that his research for his Master’s degree is socially responsible and will ultimately make an impact in society since it will serve as an important tool for government, policy makers, institutions and other stakeholders in addressing some of the most important challenges faced by humanity such as extreme weather condition, food and water scarcity, poor health conditions as well as environmental degradation.

He is presently preparing for his PhD studies and is gearing up towards becoming a renowned atmospheric and space weather scientist in the near future. Through his research, he also hopes to make contributions to policies that will keep Earth habitable.

Words: Swastika Maney

Photograph: Rajesh Jantilal