Concern as Humberdale waste site fast approaches critical mass

The Humberdale waste site.

UMDONI Municipality is in the spotlight again over the overflowing Humberdale Waste Site.

An informal committee established by various members of the public concerned about the waste site feel that the municipality is not accepting responsibility or carrying out the tasks it is required to. In fact, they didn’t even show up for a recent meeting, one they are supposed to call and run themselves.

Not that long ago, the waste site was literally at maximum capacity with garbage still piling up daily.

Only when the Department of Environmental Affairs stepped in and threatened to have municipal manager Xolani Luthuli fined R10-m and/or thrown in jail for 10 years, did something actually get done about the matter.

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A new contractor was finally appointed. Although he is doing his best to maintain the site, without a consulting engineer and waste manager on site, this becomes difficult.

Adding even more frustration to the lack of accountability by the municipality is the fact that the landfill site has almost reached full capacity.

With current fill rates it is estimated that the current cell will remain operational for three more years, but this also depends on whether or not the site is properly managed.

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A new landfill cell has already been planned and its funding secured for construction.

However, questions were raised as to why construction had not started.

Construction of the new cell could take an estimated two years plus four to five months to get the water use licence approved and another year for the new cell to comply to environmental regulations.

Meanwhile, 120 workers were set to arrive on Monday, February 20, to start clearing invasive plant species as well as to carry out general maintenance.

Alas, they weren’t provided with any herbicides to ensure that the plants do not grow back.

Some good news though – Locals could soon expect a reduction in the fly population if a new method of ground control is approved.


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Juan Venter

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