Sewage Pollutes Rivers and Sea

Posted by: Saving Water SA (Cape Town, South Africa) – partnered with Water Rhapsody conservation systems
27 January 2010

Dangerous and rising levels of bacteria and other contaminants have been reported in many rivers around the country in recent years, particularly in KwaZulu-Natal, the Free State, Eastern Cape and Gauteng.

Sewage spill in Port Alfred. Photo from Talk of the Town.

Reports have also pointed to badly-managed wastewater treatment plants – which discharge into either rivers or the sea – as one of the main culprits.

The consequences of the extremely high levels of pollution in our water bodies are many, varied and serious, and Government’s continuing delay in the publication of the “Green Drop” report on the state of South Africa’s wastewater treatment plants may indicate its shocking content.

The department of water affairs announced in 2008 that it would carry out a national assessment of wastewater treatment plants, to determine which were in line to be awarded Green Drop status, signifying they complied with relevant regulations, norms and standards.

“It appears, from information currently available to us, that only 32 of South Africa’s approximately 970 wastewater treatment works comply with requirements for safe discharge,” Democratic Alliance water affairs spokesperson Annette Lovemore said in a statement.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *