ENVIRONMENTAL MANAGEMENT TAKES CENTRE STAGE IN EKURHULENI
The City of Ekurhuleni leg of National Clean-Up and Recycling Week kicked off with the cleaning of the Bredell Cemetery this morning. Grass cutting and litter picking were the order of the day as municipal workers and other stakeholders rolled up their sleeves to bring dignity back to the facility.
This week a special focus will be paid to various environmental challenges in the City, including illegal dumping, litter picking, maintenance of cemeteries, and cleaning open spaces, water bodies and sidewalks. This will be over and above the daily routine work of waste collection, grass cutting and other environmental management-related services.
National Clean-Up and Recycling Week is an annual programme that serves to emphasise the importance of a cleaner environment through collaborative efforts from all spheres of government, schools, businesses, Producer Responsibility Organisations (PROs) and communities. One of the major aims is to encourage communities to take good care of the environment around them, as well as to raise awareness on proper waste management practices like picking up litter and disposing of waste at facilities intended for such.
“The week further serves to promote and encourage recycling activities through educating communities about the importance of recycling and its economic benefits. We encourage them to participate in the separation of waste at source initiatives, show support to dedicated local recycling co-operatives and SMEs, and educate those who are unaware of the environmental and financial benefits of recycling,” explains City spokesman Zweli Dlamini.
The National Clean-Up Week 2023 runs from 11 to 16 September, where stakeholders and affected parties are encouraged to commit to at least one day to hold an event that encompasses the cleaning up of selected areas of concern, which may include illegal dumps and cleaning of dirty streets, cemeteries, taxi ranks, parks and streams.
“The City has a week-long programme that includes the cleaning of identified CBDs, cemeteries and a school,” explains Dlamini. “Today we did Bredell cemetery and next on the list will be Meyer Street in Germiston, Phumlani Cemetery in Daveyton and finally Silindokuhle Primary School in Etwatwa.”
Meanwhile, clean-up week runs concurrently with Arbor month in South Africa. It is celebrated in the month of September as a nationwide campaign that encourages tree planting, conservation, education, and creating of awareness about the importance of planting trees and taking care of them, as well as promoting overall cleanliness for a healthy and aesthetically pleasing environment.
In ensuring the successful implementation and observation of both National Clean-Up Week and Arbor Month, the following stakeholders have been invited to partner with the City:
- Department of Forestry, Fisheries, and the Environment (DFFE);
- Gauteng Department of Agriculture, Rural Development and Environment (GDARDE);
- Plastics SA;
- Fibre Circle;
- Local Recycling Organisation;
- Local Environmental Organisations; and
- The Green Army.
The main event for both the National Clean-Up & Recycling Week and Arbor Month is Friday 15 September, in Etwatwa.