Thousands of Melkbosstrand, Atlantis, Table View and Milnerton residents will embrace the decision that the planned 500 hectare Western Cape Regional Landfill site between Melkbosstrand and Atlantis has been scrapped.
The vociferous objections by the public led by Willem Steenkamp have finally been heeded by authorities, so for now the site on Donkergat farm will remain undisturbed.
The man who managed to garner massive amount of support from the area, Steenkamp, informed TygerBurger of the decision by Anton Bredell, MEC of Local Government, Environmental Affairs and Development Planning.
Says Steenkamp: “This has been a seven year struggle for me personally and is indeed a victory for us as a community as well as all our neighbours in Dassenberg, Atlantis, Blouberg, Table View, Milnerton and so forth. For those that are not fully aware – our town and surrounds were threatened with the implementation of an enormous 50 metre high landfill site on the doorstep of Melkbosstrand which would have served as the new waste treatment facility for the Western Cape.”
There have been a plethora of media reports over the last few years about the proposed landfill site and those who oppose it.
Steenkamp adds that it was never a case of “not on our doorstep” argument, but rather one pointing out the fundamental flaws in the whole political process of those in power seven years ago.
Various ratepayers’ organisations, unions and residents launched the country’s biggest appeal against a Record of Decision ever and after authorities granted the appeal, a court case ensued.
It was ruled that the appeal should never have been granted and it was back to square one for the opposition.
Thousands of man-hours and rands were spent over the course of seven years, so this decision by Bredell is a weight off Steenkamp’s shoulders.
Suffice to say that chairperson of the Melkbosstrand Ratepayers’ Association, John Taylor, is also over the moon.
“Now it’s up to the City to decide what they’re going to do from here,” he says.
Taylor adds the visual impact of the proposed site would have been an eyesore, as can be seen at the Vissershok landfill site.
There’s also talk about expansion happening to the North of Melkbosstrand, and having a landfill site there would have stymied this.
Steenkamp thanked everyone who pulled together to prevent this from happening when he said: “Although it sometimes might have felt as if we were fighting a losing battle and spending so much money on a lost cause, it goes to show that persistence pays off and justice still prevails. I appreciate everyone’s tremendous support.”
Steenkamp concludes with caution: “The minister’s decision isn’t final. If it is decided that the landfill should be at the alternative site near Kalbaskraal then there is a chance that the courts might be called upon again.”
 ***DISCLAIMER: THIS ARTICLE AND PHOTO WERE PUBLISHED IN TYGERBURGER, A CAPE TOWN BASED MEDIA24 COMMUNITY NEWSPAPER. NEITHER MAY BE DUPLICATED WITHOUT ACCREDITING THE SOURCE – TYGERBURGER, MEDIA24.***
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