Gauteng and NW Province

Concerns raised over Vaal River water hyacinth pollution

Thursday 13 March 2014


There is concern about the Vaal River being polluted by water hyacinth downstream from the Bloemhof Dam in North West.  The weeks of rain have caused water levels along the Vaal River to increase significantly.

The capacity of Vaal Dam has increased to approximately 105% with several sluice gates opened. Outflow from the Vaal Dam is about 857 cumecs and about 900 cumecs flows into Bloemhof Dam.

Local Restaurant and Lodge owner, Sias Meyer, says there is concern about the river. “There’s hyacinth flowing on the water. That’s a very bad plant for South Africa. It came from, I think, Brazil. But at this stage, it has polluted all of the dams.”

Meyer adds, “In Bloemhof dam, it’s the first time that we have hyacinth. That [hyacinth] causes the fish to die because it takes out all the oxygen outside the water. But our main concern is keep the water level as it is.”


The quality of water is indeed a concern. So many dams have been polluted in South Africa by sewage spills. Estuaries have been damaged beyond repair. If we don’t conserve water, use less water, recycle water, we are heading for a real disaster. So many people have died already from polluted river and dam water, how long before it reaches your tap? Please save water, harvest your own rainwater.

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