PICS: Green Scorpions probe oil spill in Durban river
Durban - South Durban Community Environmental Alliance along with the Green Scorpions, the eThekwini Municipality and Transnet have taken samples along the entire Amanzimnyama River after oil sludge began flowing into the Durban harbour recently.
The samples will be used as evidence against whom ever is found responsible for releasing oil into the river that snakes around Teakwood road, Jacobs road and Clairwood areas.
This week, and after the heavy rains that pushed the oil down to the mangroves on either side of the harbour.
According to the SDCEA, All the mangrove trees are covered with oil and the sand bank nursery of birdlife and to a large variety of fish, crab, shrimp, and mollusks species has been destroyed because of this incident.
A number of birds had oil on their legs and feathers. These fish nurseries play an essential source for food for thousands of communities; it also stabilizes the coastline and prevents erosion from waves and storms.
“This has caused negative environmental impacts destroying vegetation and marine life,” a statment from the environmental lobby said.
“The Amanzimnyama canal has been a dumping river for surrounding industries and sewerage waste”.
The oil leak was first discovered on Sunday. This week, residents of the Bluff, led by Ivor Aylward accompanied members of the SDCEA, Green Scorpions, Transnet and eThekwini Municipality Water officials around the incident path in the Amanzimnyama River.
The SDCEA said there were many companies which operations face the river and some have drain outlets that enter the river.
“At this stage the most likely source has not yet been identified and most companies take advantage by dumping oil waste and other chemical substances either at night or during the weekends knowing well that no one will hold them accountable because no monitoring is done by authorities,” Desmond D’Sa of the SDCEA said.
He said they had walked the entire area to carry out a thorough investigation and taking samples of the sludge and oil at various points.
This joint investigation has been done so no area is left untouched and a proper investigation of the company including any illegal activities is captured.
“With all that has taken place we have seen immediate action from Transnet in getting the booms installed yesterday across the Durban harbor to avoid further damage and here we recognize the Durban Harbour Port manager and his officials who acted immediately in appointing Spill Tech”.
“It shows when you have active citizens and government official’s working together, it makes a huge difference because you get swift action and the problem is identified,” he said.