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City of CT: Urban environment to blame for Black River pollution

Some residents in Hazendal believe the deteriorating state of the river is causing an influx of flies, cockroaches and mosquitoes into their homes.

FILE: The polluted Black River near Hazendal in Cape Town. Picture: Monique Mortlock/EWN.

CAPE TOWN - The City of Cape Town says the main cause of pollution in the Black River is due to the urban environment.

Some residents in Hazendal, who live alongside the river, believe that raw sewage is being pumped into the river and not only stormwater.

The residents believe the deteriorating state of the river is causing an influx of flies, cockroaches and mosquitoes into their homes.

Several residents in Hazendal, specifically in Buckner Road, the street directly next to the Black River, have been battling with a fly infestation for the past two weeks.

They’ve also noticed an increase in the number of mosquitoes and cockroaches in their homes.

They believe the river, which they say is more polluted than ever before, is the cause of the infestation.

The City of Cape Town says it’s just as concerned about the water quality and the pollution.

Councillor Xanthea Limberg says some of the main pollutants are because of the urban environment.

“The illegal dumping into canals and rivers as well as organic wastes, particularly from households, is causing the proliferation of flies.”

As for concerns about raw sewage being pumped into the river, Limberg says effluent from the Athlone Waste Water Treatment Works could be causing “elevated pollutant loads”.

But she says the plant “generally” complies with national discharge standards.

(Edited by Zamangwane Shange)

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