Locals will be happy to know that after a long struggle lasting more than a decade the Olifants River Estuary near Lutzville will officially be declared a nature reserve.
Many have been concerned at the prospects of mining expected to take place in the area and decided to rally against this possibility and move to have the area named a nature reserve to preserve its natural beauty.
This last week an agreement was reached by relevant authorities to have the important biodiversity in the area preserved by consolidating the land and properties located on the land into a provincial nature reserve.
Meaning the estuary will become the centre of a larger conservation area bringing conservation authorities and people in the surrounding areas into a co-operative management agreement. This move is also expected to boost local economy and provide more opportunities for fishing, salt mining and recreation activities on a small-scale as well as ecotourism.
Along the West Coast the Olifants River estuary stands out as one of the last remaining ‘natural oases’ unharmed by mining done over decade in search of diamonds and valuable minerals.
While the continued efforts to ramp up mining on the West Coast has residents concerned many have welcomed the decision to protect the area with open hands and look forward to seeing the estuary kept in good condition and unspoiled for many years to come.