Kat Ri­ver re­mains smel­ly is­sue

George Herald - - NEWS - Pau­li­ne Lou­rens

The bad-smell­ling Kat Ri­ver which me­an­ders through Den­ne­oord, Berg­sig and E­den in­to Ge­or­ge's main wa­ter sup­ply - the Gar­den Rou­te Dam - has a Den­ne­oord mot­her suf­fi­cient­ly wor­ried and she has for­bid her child­ren to play in or e­ven put their feet in this litt­le stre­am.

Da­wn W­hi­te­he­ad, w­ho­se ho­me is si­tu­a­ted ne­ar the ri­ver banks, says thus far nu­me­rous se­ar­ches un­der­ta­ken by Ge­or­ge Mu­ni­ci­pa­li­ty's wor­kers to lo­ca­te the seepa­ge from the main se­wer pi­pe that runs next to the ri­ver, ha­ve been fruit­less.

The pos­si­ble con­ta­mi­na­ti­on of the ri­ver in this ti­me of droug­ht was rai­sed with the Ge­or­ge Wild­li­fe and En­vi­ron­men­tal So­cie­ty of SA (Wes­sa), who did an on-si­te in­specti­on at the pro­per­ty in Ma­de­lie­fie Street, Den­ne­oord on Sa­tur­day 26 Au­gust.

Wes­sa con­cur­red that the­re is a need to del­ve dee­per in­to the sour­ce of the dis­tincti­ve se­wer smell. The old se­wa­ge li­ne was re­pla­ced furt­her up­stre­am last y­e­ar, but this secti­on still needs to be re­pla­ced.

Ap­pe­al to ma­yor

Wes­sa chair­man Clau­de Ma­re­chal, a pro­fes­si­o­nal en­gi­neer, said a strong smell of se­wa­ge ef­flu­ent e­ma­na­ted from the stre­am of wa­ter du­ring his in­specti­on of the ri­ver. Fin­ding this qui­te dis­tur­bing, Ma­re­chal wro­te to the Exe­cu­ti­ve Ma­yor of Ge­or­ge Mel­vin Naik this week: "It is pos­si­ble that se­wa­ge is o­ver­flo­wing, either from a man­ho­le or a bro­ken pi­pe so­mew­he­re up­stre­am of this si­te. This needs in­ves­ti­ga­ting.

“Du­ring the o­pe­ning of our new En­vi­ron­men­tal E­du­ca­ti­on S­cien­ce Cen­t­re at the Gar­den Rou­te Bo­ta­ni­cal Gar­den a few mont­hs ago, you ex­pres­sed your con­cern a­bout the en­vi­ron­ment.

“We would ap­pe­al to you to re­me­dy the si­tu­a­ti­on al­ong the Kat Ri­ver. This ri­ver, as the main sour­ce of wa­ter to the Ge­or­ge Dam, is the li­fe­b­lood of our ci­ty. The ri­ver and its banks s­hould be kept as cle­an as pos­si­ble to mi­ni­mi­se the cost of pu­ri­fying wa­ter. " Naik re­spon­ded via mu­ni­ci­pal s­po­kes­per­son C­han­tel Ed­wards-K­lo­se, who de­nied that the se­wer li­ne needs re­pla­ce­ment. "The­re are no se­wera­ge is­su­es with the Kat Ri­ver. The wa­ter qua­li­ty in the Kat Ri­ver, as well as all ot­her ri­vers within the Ge­or­ge a­rea, are mo­ni­to­red on a monthly ba­sis.”

The ri­ver and its banks s­hould be kept as cle­an as pos­si­ble to mi­ni­mi­se the cost of pu­ri­fying wa­ter.

Cut­ting do­wn trees

Com­menting on the blu­e­gum logs and bran­ches that are still clut­te­ring up the Kat Ri­ver mont­hs af­ter the trees we­re fel­led, Ma­re­chal said, "W­hi­le the cut­ting do­wn of thir­sty trees ne­ar a ri­ver is lau­da­ble, the sta­te in which the cut­tings we­re left is a di­sas­ter. “The stre­am it­self is co­ve­r­ed with cut bran­ches and ve­ge­ta­ti­on. Not on­ly does it im­pe­de the flow of the ri­ver, but de­bris is now flo­wing do­wn the ri­ver." Naik said that the si­te w­he­re trees ha­ve been fel­led ne­ar Ma­de­lie­fie Street has been in­spected this past week and will be ad­dres­sed.

Re­ad full sto­ry at www. ge­or­ge­he­rald.com and the full mu­ni­ci­pal re­ply on the let­ters pa­ge, pa­ge 29.

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