A major dumping hot spot in Mitchell’s Plain, along Swartklip Road, has been listed as one of the ten worst by the City of Cape Town.
Across the metro, on average, approximately R350 million is spent every year to keep pace with the volumes of dumped materials.
Xanthea Limberg, Mayco member for informal settlements, water and waste services, and energy, said everything from building rubble and broken furniture to household waste and animal carcasses was dumped across the metro.
“Cement is particularly bad as it can cling to or take the form of infrastructure such as pipes and specialised equipment, which would need to be brought in to remove the cement, for instance. This would of course drive up the costs,” she said.
Ms Limberg responded to a Plainsman enquiry after a reporter visited three illegal dumping sites in Mitchell’s Plain (“Enough of the dumping already,” Plainsman January 18).
Mitchell’s Plain residents appealed to dumpers to take pride in the area before matters spiralled out of control.
Ms Limberg said it was important for residents to use legal drop-off sites for their waste and report all instances of illegal dumping.
“Please take photographs and other information as evidence and report this immediately to the City,” she said.
“We urge residents to always keep their reference number to ensure that a service request is attended to as quickly as possible.”
The “entirely avoidable high costs” the City incurred clearing illegal dumping could better be spent on other services.
The Plainsman also checked whether residents were using the solid waste drop-off and recycling facility, in Spine Road. It is open from 8am to 8.30pm from Monday to Friday; from 8am to 5pm on Saturday and public holidays; and on Sunday from 9am to 5pm.
Between Monday and Friday, it receives about 80 vehicles a day; and on Saturdays and Sundays, it rises to an average of 140 vehicles.
The primary function of the drop-off is to minimise the waste going to landfill sites. This is done by educating users of the facility about how to sort, separate and recycle their waste.
For example, garden waste is chipped and sent for processing into compost; recyclables are put aside for sorting and reusable rubble – such as bricks, blocks and gullies – is put in bins for possible resale.
Such efforts were helping to halve the waste going into lanfills, said Ms Limberg.
“This is a great achievement, and if everyone were to pull together in making an effort in this regard, we could reduce these volumes even more,” she said.
“This is a key aspect of efforts necessary to make Cape Town a truly sustainable city.”
Residents can contact law enforcement at 021 392 7114/5 or SMS at 31373 or email wastewise@ capetown.gov.za to report illegal dumping.