AfriForum audited 153 landfill sites across South Africa this year as part of the organisation’s national project to measure the quality of landfill sites in South Africa.
Only one out of nine landfill sites that were audited in KwaZulu-Natal complied with national standards. In terms of applicable legislation and regulations, including the National Environmental Management: Waste Act 59 of 2008, all landfill sites must comply with specific requirements.
According to Eugene van Aswegen, AfriForum’s District Coordinator for KwaZulu-Natal, most of the landfill sites in KwaZulu-Natal are in a poor state. “This can be attributed mainly to poor planning and even poorer management.”
Van Aswegen says that the most common problems that AfriForum identified during the audit included the absence of landfill site licences and a complete mismanagement of sites. “It seems that this aspect of local government does not matter.”
Municipal deterioration is rampant and it is noticeable that especially smaller municipalities are subject to large-scale mismanagement.
AfriForum met with Barbara Creecy, Minister of Environmental Affairs, and her team on various occasions. Six terrains were identified that the Department will tackle in cooperation with AfriForum to bring these up to standard again. AfriForum will also focus on solving problems at certain landfill sites in the province in cooperation with the relevant municipality. The organisation will apply pressure to get these sites up to standard. AfriForum will monitor the situation closely to ensure that these sites’ standards improve sufficiently.