The recently published SuDS and WSUD guidelines were officially launched by the Water Research Commission on the 11th of February 2015.
Over the last ten years the Athlone Sewage Works has been upgraded multiple times at a cost of millions of rands. These upgrades were necessary. In mid-2000s the sewage plant was known as the Athlone ‘pong’ because of the strong toilet smell.
Constructed wetlands come in many shapes and forms, and are designed for different purposes. They are not natural systems, and most often they don’t work or at least as well as their makers would like especially if they are not managed.
The primary aim is to provide a framework plan which will guide the building of ecological and social resilience in the Liesbeek River catchment while providing an “insurance policy” in order to safeguard and enhance the Liesbeek. This framework will also aim to address the relationship between ecology and human behavior by enhancing amenity and social value of the river
The Premier, together with officials and contributors to the Western Cape Province 110% Green Campaign project, visited a number of initiatives in the Berg River catchment on Saturday 27 September. The visit to the informal settlement of Langrug, Franschhoek, the only site directly linked to the Berg River, gave Kevin Winter of UCT’s Urban Water Management research unit a chance to re-visit some unfinished business.
An extract of an article by Dr Kirsty Carden and Lloyd Fisher-Jeffes, published on the University of Cape Towns website, discussing the recent water shortages experienced in Gauteng.
On Sunday morning (28 September 2014), the Western Cape Premier Helen Zille, accompanied by an entourage of officials involved in the 110% Green Campaign, arrived on Grensplaas on the Berg River to a warm reception by canoeists and local officials. The premier was kitted out in a tracksuit ready to paddle down the Berg River! The trip formed part of a two-day excursion to showcase recent initiatives taking place along the Berg River, one of the Province’s most valuable waterways.
The South African Water Research Commission has recently released the first Water Sensitive Urban Design (WSUD) Guidelines for South Africa. The guidelines include a framework for transitioning settlements (towns and cities) in South Africa in to ‘Water Sensitive’ Settlements.
As we develop a vision, and framework for achieving a ‘Water Sensitive’ future for South African Settlements and Cities it is worth reflecting on the TEDxTalks by Prof Tony Wong and Dr Kalanithy Vairavamoorthy.
The final version of the National Water Resource Strategy – II has been published. There are a number of significant changes that have been made including an increased focus on stormwater, and the impacts of stormwater on urban water. Below are the links to the NWRS-II.
The social, economic and environmental impacts of poor water quality in South Africa’s urban aquatic systems are increasingly being highlighted by the media (see 2 examples 1 2 ). Improving urban surface water quality in South Africa will require catchment-wide strategies including the monitoring and management of point and non-point source pollution in stormwater. Significant costs may be incurred; however international experience suggests that these are outweighed by the benefits.