Gansbaai stormwater drain net: 'We will monitor brands and identify problems'

Brenda Du Toit, Public Relations and Project Support for the Dyer Island Conservation Trust, talks to Kieno Kammies about how it is employing an Australian concept to keep waste out of the ocean by placing a net over stormwater drain outlets in Gansbaai.

Gansbaai is a fishing town and popular tourist destination in the Overberg District Municipality, Western Cape.

The trust was started in 2006 by Wilfred Chivell and works to help the erosion of marine ecology and protecting the endangered African Penguin, and the breeding and calving grounds of the Southern Right Whale.

The mission to help reverse the pollution of the oceans falls squarely in the trust's ambit and the stormwater drain nets seemed like a perfect fit.

We have been cleaning up around this particular stormwater drain and it is the most difficult spot because there is a bunch of kelp that sits there and it gets incredibly dirty.

Brenda Du Toit, Public Relations and Project Support - Dyer Island Conservation trust

Because we are involved in animal rescues, we have seen the results. We had a penguin recently that was deceased with a piece of plastic in its stomach area.

Brenda Du Toit, Public Relations and Project Support - Dyer Island Conservation trust

They rescue many animals, for example, turtles, which are then sent to the Two Oceans Aquarium in Cape Town.

All those animals coming through are being affected by plastic, and Wilfred said we have to do this and why haven't we done this?.

Brenda Du Toit, Public Relations and Project Support - Dyer Island Conservation trust

She says it requires commitment, dedication, and hard work.

It has to be checked every day, especially in the rainy season, so we can check what is coming through. And we have to manage and maintain it.

Brenda Du Toit, Public Relations and Project Support - Dyer Island Conservation trust

Organisations need to work with the municipality, engineering, and environmental departments when implementing these nets, she explains.

People are so careless with their trash now, they don't realise it is going to go somewhere.

Brenda Du Toit, Public Relations and Project Support - Dyer Island Conservation trust

Students working for the trust are involved in a project to monitor the waste, says Du Toit.

We will be looking for any brands coming through, and identify what the main problems are.

Brenda Du Toit, Public Relations and Project Support - Dyer Island Conservation trust

Listen to the interview below:

Read the Dyer Island Conservation Trust statement below:


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