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Pollution plume off the beachfront raises concerns
01 June 2011
Guy Rogers

A STRANGE-looking plume of discoloured water has been appearing sporadically in the bay between Shark Rock Pier and Humewood Beach, resulting in a number of calls from concerned residents, Following an initial report on May 20 by Humewood resident Elize Pretorius, and then disappearing for several days, it reappeared again this week, prompting further calls.

At low tide, the milky gunge collects in the rock pools on the edge of the water beneath the outlet of a stormwater drain diagonally opposite the Hobie Beach pub and restaurant complex and, as the tide gets higher, this gunge is flushed out into the bay.

Nelson Mandela Bay Municipality beach manager Fernando Cain said he took a sample of the material yesterday and it is being analysed by the Nelson Mandela Bay Municipality’s scientific services’ department.

“We will wait and see for sure what the results say but at this stage the thinking is that it could just be underground water that has mixed with building sand from the Boardwalk building site.

“We had a report last week from the site that they had pierced groundwater during their excavation operations and that this water had mixed with building material and flowed into the stormwater drain.”

The results of the test should be available soon and if they do not match this scenario then further investigations will be done, he said.

Last week, NMBM coastal environment unit Godfrey Murrell said another contributor could be the clay material excavated at the site that is being blown from transport trucks and which is then being washed off the roads by the recent rains, into the stormwater system. The trucks are transporting excavated rock out to Driftsands where it is being stockpiled for future use on roads.

Marine biologist and crustaceans’ specialist Prof Tris Wooldridge said even if the pollution is just suspended clay sediment, as seems to be the case, it could cause problems for crabs or other life in the rock pools.

“It could smother their gills and clog their breathing apparatus. Even if it is flushed out from the rocks with each high tide, you could well have mortalities.”



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Your Views

BrandGat 3 February 2012 5:08 am

These Tyrannical actions by this Government smack of Nazi Germany in the 1930`s,however they saw their a@se`s soon enough!…

dokhotelo 2 February 2012 1:18 pm

SECRETS OF STATE that need the common citizen ‘protected’ from its ugliness: Persistent destruction of the education system to a total chaos, Total destruction of Health system with revamping when Je…

dokhotelo 2 February 2012 1:04 pm

..PeStir: Over 50% of the money I generate goes in taxes, the same taxes supposed to keep children and adults with shoes and education and decent health, but end inside the pockets of ANC Mayors, ANC …

PStir 2 February 2012 10:42 am

How much of your salary do you donate? Or do you just comment about it?…

BrandGat 2 February 2012 3:47 am

This ‘secrecy bill’ is a slap in the face for democracy! The government seems to want “things’ swept under the carpet it has obviously much to hide. Time to get shot of them and start over again….

SharonT 31 January 2012 2:56 pm

how disappointing that this so-called journalist feels the need to include the trashy comments from a teenagers’ facebook page? the naked facts would have been enough to enlighten us to the teenagers…

dokhotelo 31 January 2012 11:35 am

…Do you know the meaning of political opportunism???? …….How about the “concerned mayor” and “concerned councillors” (if such a thing exists) donate part of their generous salaries (tax-payer p…

PStir 31 January 2012 7:55 am

So you don’t think it’s a worthy cause to get school uniforms for poor children? …

LAW 31 January 2012 7:34 am

Here we go again with the threats of load shedding. Eskom has had many years to come up and get the system running for a bigger population in SA, if its not an increase now its threats of load sheddin…

dokhotelo 30 January 2012 1:05 pm

…Ag, shame!….But with all the money he gets (“Councillors demand huge salary hikes” , “Mayors salaries to top R 1 million”), he can clown around…………