Specialising in
Grey Water
and
Rainwater Harvesting systems in South Africa .

Water Awareness Event – Wildevoelvlei

Posted by: Saving Water SA (Cape Town, South Africa) – partnered with Water Rhapsody conservation systems – 30 March 2011

Issued on behalf of: Liesel James: Founder of Little Green Fingers

On 26 March 2011 a Water Awareness Event focusing on a local issue took place at Blue Water Café, Imhoff’s Gift. The community of South Peninsula, City of Cape Town and Wastewater Treatment Works (WWTW) were invited to discuss the ongoing eutrophication causing toxicity in Wildevoel Vlei and insisting on finding a successful solution.

The blue-green bloom in December 2010. Locals were warned to keep their pets and visitors away from the water.

50 people including local residents, environmental organizations and volunteer groups attended.

The Wildevoelvlei wetlands form an integral part of the wetland systems in the Noordhoek Valley. Originally the vlei was seasonal and dried out over the summer months. Rainfall, groundwater seepage, stormwater run-off and spring tides regulated the water level.

In 1977, the Wildevoelvlei WWTW was commissioned and the vlei became a permanent water body due to the treated effluent being discharged into it.

Wally Peterson founder of Kommetjie Environmental Awareness Group (KEAG) who was previously involved in trying to resolve this problem gave a comprehensive history of Wildevoelvlei at the event.

He said, “WWTW was upgraded in 1996, but the development in the valley has way exceeded the expected population growth as predicted in the EIA. This placed WWTW under huge pressure through an increase of treated effluent entering the vlei, and through an increase in quantity and decrease in quality of the nonpoint stormwater run-off discharged into the vlei.” Continue reading Water Awareness Event – Wildevoelvlei

South Peninsula residents to tackle toxic water issue

Posted by: Saving Water SA (Cape Town, South Africa) – partnered with Water Rhapsody conservation systems – 17 March 2011

Issued on behalf of: Liesel James: Founder of Little Green Fingers

Spurred on by rapid urbanisation and climate change, water is set to be the world’s next major resource crisis – an issue World Water Day is drawing attention to on 22 March, 2011.

Blue-Green algae deposits.

With its theme of Water for cities: responding to the urban challenge it hopes to incite governments, businesses, communities and individuals to engage and address this growing issue and is something a group of passionate South Peninsula residents have taken significant heed of.

Motivated by a legacy of water issues that affect the Kommetjie, Ocean View, Capri and Noordhoek communities, the group aims to raise awareness about persistently high toxicity levels in Wildevoelvlei among the public at an event at Blue River Café, Imhoff’s Gift on 26 March.

Liesel James, Little Green Fingers founder and environmental activist says, “The concerns about Wildevoelvlei’s toxicity levels aren’t new. In fact, a warning was issued by the City of Cape Town in December 2010 advising public to stay away from affected areas, including Noordhoek beach.

However, the issue still persists and we want to pin-point its cause as well as discuss sustainable solutions as Wildevoelvlei used to be a pristine estuary but has degraded over the last two decades.”

It is alleged that the culprit is the effluent released from the Wildevoelvlei Wastewater Treatment Works (WWTW) into Wildevoelvlei – after it has been treated. Continue reading South Peninsula residents to tackle toxic water issue

SA tap water could be undrinkable in 19 years

Posted by: Saving Water SA (Cape Town, South Africa) – partnered with Water Rhapsody conservation systems – 09 March 2011

Tap water in SA could be undrinkable in the next 19 years if the country does not change the way it uses water, or how it treats used water, scientists say.

Already, some of the tap water in SA contains poisons.

Blue-green algae produce toxins that rob water bodies of oxygen.

Poor quality water will negatively affect the economy, curbing the manufacturing sector directly and indirectly, says limnologist Bill Harding. Limnology is the study of freshwater bodies.

Despite Water Affairs Minister Buyelwa Sonjica promising a turnaround in the parlous state of wastewater treatment almost a year ago, there has been no visible action taken to curb the risk from semi-treated water discharged into SA’s rivers and reservoirs, the scientists say.

Last year’s Green Drop (wastewater quality) report showed that only 32, or 3%, of SA’s estimated 850 wastewater treatment works complied with requirements for safe discharge. The report noted that only 449 of the works had been assessed, with the rest either ignoring, or being unable to comply with, the call to submit to scrutiny.

Only 32 (7%) complied with the Green Drop criteria after being measured for E. coli bacteria, nitrates, phosphates and ammonia and other nasties.

The national Green Drop Programme was launched in 2008 and was meant to cover all wastewater treatment works so as not to harm the water bodies into which they discharge their product. Continue reading SA tap water could be undrinkable in 19 years

Go green with a grey water solution

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

Only a minute share of water in our planet (2.5%) is potable, and most is locked up as ice while only one per cent is available in lakes, rivers and underground water tables for […]

Wildevoelvlei goes toxic – again

Posted by: Saving Water SA (Cape Town, South Africa) – partnered with Water Rhapsody conservation systems – 16 December 2010

In 1997 there was a catastrophic poisoning of the Wildevoelvlei, one of the Noordhoek Valley Wetlands. A highly toxic blue-green bloom formed on the surface of the lakes as a result of wastewater overflowing from […]