Durban - Durban volunteer beach cleanup groups have lambasted the eThekwini Municipality for its complacent attitude to preventing litter from entering stormwater outlets.
Just a week after international beach clean-up Durban beaches are strewn with litter again.
Durban environmental groups said heavy rainfall over the weekend had flushed out stormwater outlets covering the beach sands with litter that was flushed out of Umgeni Estuary, the harbour and a number of stormwater outlets.
The Durbanites Against Plastic Pollution (Dapp) Facebook page has labelled this as a waste management failure.
Steven Cohen, a Dapp spokesperson, said single-use polystyrene cups and food ware carpet Durban's beaches after every moderate rain event as these littered items get flushed out the city's drains.
"This highly mismanaged type of packaging must be urgently regulated in Durban to save our marine life from harm. In the age of plastic, unprotected storm water outlets along Durban’s beachfront should be illegal," he said.
Cohen said according to research conducted the city has countless outlets between the harbour in the south and uMhlanga in the north which contribute towards the city being one of the biggest dischargers globally of litter into the ocean.
Dapp suggested that drain grates and end-of-pipe traps should be installed as part of a range of measures to prevent plastic from reaching our ocean.
Dapp said a holistic response should include:
- Banning the sale of expanded polystyrene foodware and other highly mismanaged packaging products,
- intensified anti-littering campaigns and fostering of partnerships with the private sector to strengthen waste management
- Enforcement of littering and dumping bylaws and
- Targeted municipal cleaning of litter hotspots closer to the source of pollution and along watercourses leading to the sea.
The eThekwini Municipality had not responded to an email from the Daily News at the time of going online.