Metro probe source of effluent

2013-09-16 00:00

THE eThekwini Metro is investigating an incident of environmental pollution after an unknown effluent washed into the sea in the area of Cuttings Beach and the Umzinyama Canal, south of Durban.

South Durban Community Environmental Alliance co-ordinator Desmond d’Sa said they had witnessed an oily brown substance, including what appeared to be human faeces, flowing into the sea in the ear of Cuttings Beach and Umzinyama Canal on Friday, and the substance may be a threat to marine life.

D’Sa suspected the effluent might be either from a nearby factory or the Veolio Water waste-water plant, which is also in Merebank. Durban municipal officials arrived on the scene about an hour after the spill was reported, said D’Sa.

“The fishermen couldn’t fish. This has happened quite a few times in this area in the past. It is happening because the municipality has not properly maintained or invested in infrastructure,” said D’Sa.

A municipal official said yesterday that the municipality’s pollution control unit had dealt with the issue on Friday and the matter was being investigated further.

A spokesperson for Veolio Water said there was no way that effluent could reach the sea from their plant.

There are 18 point sources that pipe sewage and industrial effluent can flow into the sea along the eThekwini Metropolitan coastline, where the waste is supposed to be degraded naturally by the sea, according to the eThekwini website.

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