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Mayco to monitor the R1,75bn Potsdam upgrade<span><p>The City’s Mayoral Committee (Mayco) will monitor the major R1,75 billion upgrade underway at Potsdam Waste Water Treatment Works (WWTW) to ensure it is fast-tracked, said Mayor Dan Plato during his visit to the plant today.</p><p>Mayor Plato inspected progress on the upgrade, which is taking place alongside critical repair work. He was joined by Alderman Xanthea Limberg and officials on a plant walkabout.</p><p>‘Critical repair work is nearing completion within one to two months, and will result in a higher quality effluent,’ said Potsdam plant manager Janet Chunderduri.</p><p>Maintenance teams are currently on-site completing urgent repairs to belt press and UV-light machinery, critical functions in the wastewater treatment process.</p> <figure class="subtopic-fullsize-img"> <img class="responsive" src="" alt="" style="width:954px;" /> </figure></span><span><p>Phase 1 of the plant upgrade was completed in January 2020, with a major demolition operation to clear large portions of the property. New technology and capacity will be progressively added to Potsdam over the next five years. This includes the installation of an upgraded belt press system within three years.</p><p>‘The plant is currently able to operate sufficiently within its 47 megalitres per day (MLD) capacity while the upgrade is underway. Potsdam’s capacity will be doubled to 100 MLD. New membrane technology will be added as part of the upgrade, enabling treated effluent that is close to potable water standards,’ said Chunderduri.<br></p> <figure class="subtopic-fullsize-img"> <img class="responsive" src="" alt="" style="width:1129px;" /> </figure>​​</span><span>​​</span><p>Mayor Plato said: ‘Working together with residents and industry we can improve water safety in the Diep River Catchment. Ultimately, we want to see a restored environment in the lower part of the estuary, and improved safety for recreational activity such as canoeing at Milnerton Lagoon, water sports at Rietvlei Nature Reserve, and swimming at Lagoon beach. Officials have assured me that robust cleansing and enforcement operations are planned for the area. This will help mitigate the societal challenge of pollution from multiple sources.’</p><p>Prior to the plant inspection, Mayor Plato joined an enforcement blitz in the Montague Gardens industrial area, aimed at cracking down on illicit discharges into the catchment.</p><p>‘Our pollution control teams are focusing on illicit discharges into the Theo Marias and Bayside canals. Businesses large and small that do not uphold our by-laws can expect a knock on the door. We also need the ongoing help of residents to mitigate pollution by reporting illegal dumping into the system and missing drain covers as these invariably lead to sewer blockages and spills,’ said Alderman Limberg.</p><p>There are multiple sources of pollution to the Milnerton Lagoon and broader Diep River catchment, one of the largest in the City at 1551km2, with its source at the Riebeek Kasteel mountains in the Swartland.</p><p>Candice Haskins, a Freshwater Ecologist for the City of Cape Town said: ‘Long term trends show that pollution is a chronic problem, particularly in the Diep River, Soet River, Kuils River, Disa River, Lotus River and Salt River catchments. Many of these are “hard-working” catchments with a number of contributing sources such as WWTW, informal settlements and dense, hardened industrial and commercial areas.’</p><p>The City conducts water quality testing at approximately 100 river and wetland sampling points in the metro. The trends for many catchments show that pollution is a critical challenge which requires a robust societal response from government, industry and residents. </p><p>‘Water quality in the environment is monitored over a long period of time to understand the underlying trends, the influence of seasonality, and contributions from different pollution sources and land uses,’ said Haskins.</p><p>The City has been working to address pollution sources from industrial areas and informal settlements in the Dunoon and Joe Slovo areas. Extensive sewer and stormwater upgrades are at various stages of completion in the broader Diep River catchment area.</p><p>The City launched its Water Strategy in late February, with the goal of transitioning to a ‘Water Sensitive Cape Town’ over the next 20 years. The strategy makes several key commitments, including safe access to water and sanitation for all.</p><p><br><strong>End</strong><br></p>2020-03-09T22:00:00ZGP0|#1d539e44-7c8c-4646-887d-386dc1d95d70;L0|#01d539e44-7c8c-4646-887d-386dc1d95d70|City news;GTSet|#62efe227-07aa-45e7-944c-ceebacca891dGP0|#424fbb2f-e27c-44db-b853-dbbdb893d37a;L0|#0424fbb2f-e27c-44db-b853-dbbdb893d37a|Water;GTSet|#2e3de6c1-9951-4747-8f53-470629a399bb;GP0|#90b49a62-96e2-436a-9c68-187c9ab33534;L0|#090b49a62-96e2-436a-9c68-187c9ab33534|Mayor;GP0|#1d5be3fa-6ace-455a-a415-51b265efce69;L0|#01d5be3fa-6ace-455a-a415-51b265efce69|water treatment plants1


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