Fresh.ngo has been working hard to tackle the pollution washed into the Hennops after the recent Gauteng storms, the volunteers are doing a great job!

 

Centurion, South Africa – Willem Snyman has been praised for his dedication to cleaning up the Hennops River in Centurion. He started by walking along the riverside to find exactly where the pollution was coming from and was horrified by what he saw. From development sites to the nearby taxi rank, all those were contributing to the build-up of litter in the river.

Willem launched Fresh.ngo on Facebook as a way mobilised the community in helping him clean up the heavily polluted river. He also shared updates about the progress of the clean which took place over several weeks.

It has been over a year since Willem Snyman started his cause and still, he continues tirelessly to combat the endless pollution.

The recent rains pushed Willem and his team to break their own record for the longest cleanup. The never-ending pollution took them a full two weeks to get under control. Willem commented that this is just the tip of the iceberg, that the pollution caught within the last two weeks has been flowing past for years, which makes the river one of the most polluted in the country.

“For the first time the overwhelming scale of the pollution can be quantified, thirty-four eight-ton trucks, a total of 260 tons of styrofoam flotsam was removed from the litter trap net with a back-actor in a week, this after only two big storms, while 400 rubbish bags full of plastic was taken out of the grid trap, one now imagines the volumes that come down during the whole season.”

Fresh.ngo were able to install litter traps above and below the Centurion Wetland which work together to prevent pollution and litter from spreading further down the water system.

The major cleanup has been done with thanks to many volunteers. The organisation relies on its volunteers to get the pollution out of the river.

The organisation installed another litter trap to catch even more litter as it has become evident that the problem intensifies every time it rains.

“A long cable trap with floating buoys was installed in front of the grid, to span the whole breadth of the old Lake, around 200m wide, this trap will catch much of the plastic and prevent the grid from getting blocked so quickly, it should also be a lot easier to clean as the cable can be pulled out of the water.

The avalanche of trash consists mostly of household rubbish from the upstream municipalities of Jhb and Ekurhuleni, massive amounts are thoughtlessly dumped into wetland source areas and the streams of Tembisa. In areas like Kaalfontein, Ivory Park and Duduza the streams are used for trash disposal as there is often inadequate removal of rubbish near the streams, piling up into big health hazard heaps that are washed down with the rains. This cannot be allowed to continue and some form of reparation must be done by these municipalities, our water sources cannot be used as a free waterborne waste disposal.”

Willem continues to keep the community updated on all the happenings on the Hennops. He shares detailed posts letting everyone know what has been done to prevent pollution, how much has been removed from the water system and how things are going with trying to get the Government on board to make the big changes.

Follow Fresh.ngo here if you wish to get involved in their next big cleanup.


 

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Tyler Leigh Vivier
About the Author

Tyler Leigh Vivier is a writer for Good Things Guy.

Her passion is to spread good news across South Africa with a big focus on environmental issues, animal welfare and social upliftment. Outside of Good Things Guy, she is an avid reader and lover of tea.

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