The residents of Milnerton were relieved to find that the Green Scorpions have issued a directive essentially forcing the City of Cape Town to acknowledge and fix the multiple sources of pollution dirtying Diep River Estuary and Milnerton Lagoon.
The problems at the Potsdam plant in Milnerton have also led to the loss of drinking water. This is because the Milnerton fuel refinery, which would normally use treated effluent, has switched to municipal water because the effluent is too dirty.
The treated effluent from the Potsdam plant is used notably by Astron Energy, which operates the fuel refinery, as well as for irrigation by farmers, Century City, and MyCiTi. It also flows into Diep River, which becomes the Milnerton Lagoon before flowing out to sea.
The Green Scorpions issued a directive to the City of Cape Town on September 21, 2020 ordering it to remedy the state of the lagoon which is filled with stagnant, polluted effluent. Failure to comply is a criminal offence.
“On January 21, MEC Anton Bredell rejected the City’s appeal and confirmed the validity of the directive issued in September 2020 by the Western Cape Government’s Directorate: Environmental Law Enforcement (Green Scorpions) ordering the City to remedy the state of the Diep River Estuary and Milnerton Lagoon,” the Milnerton Central Residents Association said via Facebook.
“Minister Anton Bredell and the Green Scorpions team are to be commended for the very thorough investigation and the real commitment to see it through despite obstacles and opposition. The directive demonstrates what can be achieved when government is prepared to act effectively to enforce the law irrespective of party politics,” the Association said.
“Our heartfelt thanks to OUTA (Organisation Undoing Tax Abuse) for support with independent water testing and legal advice. OUTA’s involvement and professionalism have been game-changing bringing swift resolution after years of fighting unsuccessfully with the City for a cleaner environment. We now look forward to clean water and a return to the Lagoon’s natural beauty!”
Picture: Milnerton Central Residents Association/Facebook