Report by Willem Snyman fresh.ngo
On Saturday morning we removed 40 bags of plastic from the litter trap below the lake. We were a small band of volunteers joined by an enthusiastic group of young people from an eco club called ‘those Eco people’ - all worked very hard under these highly polluted conditions.
It was shocking to see how quickly the trash had accumulated, this being just rubbish thrown directly into the river during the past week - but at least now for the first time we are able to start fighting back against the pollution from this litter trap. With the coming rains in mind we also cleaned another 20 meters more of the blocked grid trap, digging into the thick pitch black sludge that has been built up here.
We removed some of the hyacinth to slowly start re-establishing a bit of a flow again. The rotten blackness here is truly shocking and shows how much sewage and sludge is still being dumped into our river and has accumulated in the winter months now waiting to all be washed downstream. Massive amounts of plastics are still lying in the wetlands of Tembisa and Olievenhoutbosch, where nets are needed to catch the trash near source before it all gets washed down and spread along the banks. We’re dreading the coming rains and need to get the ARC litter trap upstream functional as a matter of urgency. The small forest of trees planted here last weekend are looking well and we managed to give all the thirsty trees some good water.
A great thanks to all who participated in this cleanup.