Kat River remains smelly issue
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.