Healthy Rivers for Cape Town project

WESSA, in partnership with the City of Cape Town and with funding from The Coca-Cola Africa Foundation, has launched a new project to clear and rehabilitate a section of the Diep River in Cape Town. The “Healthy Rivers for Cape Town” project aims to remove aquatic alien invasive plants and visible rubbish which negatively impact the flow of water and severely compromise the general ecological health of the riverine systems.

The invasive species being targeted through the project are Eichhornia Crassipes which is commonly known as Water Hyacinth, and also semi-aquatic emergent weeds such as the Mile-a-Minute weed and the Asiatic dayflower. The project has created employment opportunities for 15 previously unemployed men and women who are working to clear an 18 kilometer reach of the river over a seven-month period.

One of the techniques being used by the clearing team to manage the spread of Water Hyacinth, is the creation of floating booms using nets and empty plastic bottles, sponsored by Coca-Cola Peninsula Beverages. These floating booms keep the weeds from spreading back into the cleared areas.