Gauteng and NW Province

Poultry farm accused of polluting

01 December 2014

A poultry farm in Remhoogte in the Skeerpoort area is being accused of polluting the Magalies River, and subsequently the Hartbeespoort Dam.

The Blue Scorpions visited the area this month and took water samples at the outlet from the Eagles Valley poultry plant’s purification dams into the Magalies River, as well as further down, and according to Nigel Adams from the Blue Scorpions, “the results from the water tests show signs of biological pollution. We are further narrowing down our tests to identify the pollutant. We are looking at administrative and/or criminal actions,” he said.

Residents in the vicinity of Eagle Valley Poultry have been complaining for the past year about the water quality of the river and farmers, who irrigate from the river, are concerned about the impact on their crops.

Cyclists who ride trails in the area, as well as the Impi Challenge competitors have also complained about the stench in the area and expressed their concern when they have to enter the water.

According to residents they have been trying since the beginning of this year to meet with the poultry farm’s management to discuss a solution, but to no avail.

In his response to Kormorant’s enquiry Danie Coetzee, General Manager of Eagles Valley Poultry said: “Since the acquisition of Eagles Valley, management have followed all necessary procedures required in making improvements to the facility, many of which have been to ensure that all necessary regulations are adhered to and complied with. In terms of environmental authorisations, all procedures have to date been followed, and participation invited from the public (per advertisement in a local newspaper),IAPs and statutory consultees. Eagles Valley Poultry has and will continue to make every effort within its means to ensure that the abattoir is compliant and exists in harmony with the surrounding environment and its neighbours. Details of procedures and processes being followed are available in our environmental authorisation report, as well as progress with regards to ongoing measures which have been implemented.

The structure is designed to process much more than the present throughput, and our final step in the process is the pond settling system for final removal of contaminants, which is an environmentally-friendly biological process. Two months ago we commissioned the water purification system, which includes state-of-the-art equipment supplied by Save Water Solutions and operates by separating the effluent and then treating each stream with a biological catalyst.”

Unfortunately this is just one of many examples; if it’s not raw sewage being spilled (conciously or unconciously) then it’s cases like this. The end result is stil the same : water pollution. The consequences are so vast we cannot afford to continue as is. Please conserve water; harvest your rainwater and recycle your grey water.

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