Wednesday, February 29, 2012

IWPA Public participation now trickling through after 11 Years


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So I wrote the so                                           thousand and one email to...
Petrus Viviers 29 February 16:16
So I wrote the so thousand and one email to the Authority and received my first response ever.

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Hi

Could we please have a response on this ... "Who can tell me what are they pumping at Jabula beach. The big hole with 2 pumps running 24 hours and wasting diesel. "
Regards
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The Reply Was as follows ... after almost a forth night. ...

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Dear Mr. Viviers,

Your email query regarding the water pump at Jabula beach was sent to us for clarity.



As part of the iSimangaliso beach upgrade, conservancy tanks are being constructed. The excavation of the tank is below the water table and therefore it is necessary to de-water. The purpose of this is to pump water out so that the tank can be constructed. Once you start construction you cannot let water back into the area until you are finished – hence the pump has pumped continuously. If this is not done the sides will collapse and people working could potentially be buried.



We have taken the liberty of adding your details to our database to receive newsflashes about all developments from iSimangaliso.

Please feel free to contact me if you have any further queries.



Your sincerely

Thandi Shabalala
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Friday, February 24, 2012

Park Authority Applied for the following Beach Permits


iSimangaliso Wetland Park Authority Yes Sodwana beach parking area; various concession areas as specified in revised RoD. Sodwana beach parking area; various concession areas as specified in revised RoD. N/A 23 April 2010 - 22 April 2015 Peter Hartley 035 - 590 1633

This begs the question what will they do on St Lucia with when they wish to manage the mouth are. Look at this application. 


APPLICANT: EXEMPTION
EXEMPTION GRANTED Y/N AREA APPLIED FOR AREA GRANTED VEHICLE REGISTRATION DURATION OF EXEMPTION RELEVANT GOVERNMENT OFFICIAL
East London Industrial Development Zone (Pty) Ltd Yes (1) From the access point at Leeches Bay, East London (coordinates 33° 03’ 55,8” S, 27° 50’ 59,9” E), for 50 metres only south-westwards and 70 metres only north-eastwards along the beach, using only the said access point to enter or exit the coastal zone; and (2) To the coastal zone from the Buffalo City Municipality abstraction point (between coordinates 33° 03’ 49.90” S, 27° 51’ 09.33” E and 33° 03” 49.03” S, 27° 51’ 10.11” E), to the gully (coordinates 33° 03’ 49.90” S, 27° 51’ 09.33” E), using only the said access point to enter or exit the coastal zone. (1) From the access point at Leeches Bay, East London (coordinates 33° 03’ 55,8” S, 27° 50’ 59,9” E), for 50 metres only south-westwards and 70 metres only north-eastwards along the beach, using only the said access point to enter or exit the coastal zone; and (2) To the coastal zone from the Buffalo City Municipality abstraction point (between coordinates 33° 03’ 49.90” S, 27° 51’ 09.33” E and 33° 03” 49.03” S, 27° 51’ 10.11” E), to the gully (coordinates 33° 03’ 49.90” S, 27° 51’ 09.33” E), using only the said access point to enter or exit the coastal zone. • One Bell B17B dump truck
• One Cat 320lme excavator
• One Bell Kato HD820E excavator
• One Cat D4H dozer
• One Komatsu D31E dozer
• One Cat 416c 4x4 TLB
• One Komatsu WB93R 4x4 TLB
• One Silla 4x4 concrete dumper
• Two 4x4 LDV’s
• One Lafarge 6 cubic metres concrete mixer truck
• One 15t hydraulic drilling rig
• One generator
• One Bomag trench compactor
10 January 2011 - 31 December 2012 Ricky Hannan 043 – 707 4015

Wonder how many operations on out beaches are contravening  NCEMA .

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Things that is wrong with Developing a Heritage Site


Public opinion is a big WORD in our constitution with little impact for the current management of iSimangaliso Wetlands Park. For years the Wild Life Custodians has fought a war against over development of coastal destinations. They visited schools and held leadership camps teaching us the importance of minimum human interference. But the current leadership of the most pristine World Heritage Site has a different view and like a rabbit dog he spoils for front page coverage and with big words making empty promises he is leading the public further and further away from having a beautiful environment.

Maybe he would have more support if he had more public participation, but his money crazy followers fend of any objection to public participation and keep on raping the environment. Developments in the small little town has gone rampant and huge luxurious lodges is popping up like mushrooms. Many people will again shout crazy man talking, but I have a few facts. Let us look at Sea Turtle Breeding Habits.

  • They use the skyline to navigate
  • They use the taste of the ocean water filled with water purculating from land to find the right coastal beaches again.
What we have here is a Authority building all sizes of structures bellow the water table altering the "taste" of the water seeping from the wetlands back into the ocean for ever. This will have a long term catastrophic effect on Breeding sea turtle population. 

The human habitation also creates a glow in the evening that also interfere with the skyline of the coast. This is such an important influence that for many years the bay at Banga Neck was lit up during Turtle Nesting Season to ensure the congregation of Nesting sites in this area. In other parts of the World they have a black out on coastal towns during the nesting season. 

Why do we allow this sort of management style that hamper Tourism Flow ... why do we belief Eco Tourism is environmentally friendly ...????   

Sunday, February 19, 2012

Storm Surges water Quality and Sediment

The Greater St Lucia Wetlands Problem
Facts and Myths about the system

From the mouth parking are facing South. This was taken standing infront of the toilets.
The water directly infront use to be 400m of beach area. 17h00 20 March 2007
St Lucia Estuary is one of the most important Estuarine systems in the World. It is a stop over to a diverse migrating animal population. It is home to many Hippo, Crocodiles and Marine species, but most off all it is the biggest Nursery North of the Aliwal Shelf. Since 2001 it has briefly functioning in 2007 but for most of the 11 years it was dormant and thousands of species had no where to breed or for the fry to grow in relative safety.

Picture of the Estuary Mouth in 1955
Pictures from way back when is circulating the Internet and creating the impression that when the two moths, iMfolozi and Estuary, are joined it will create this oasis of a fishing mecca and wild/marine life will flourish again. Sadly that is not true. For the sediment built up from the flooding iMfolozi has lead to many problems. The origin of this sediment finds its way high up in the catchment area where no soil erosion prevention is done.

Arial Photo showing the St Lucia and iMfolozi Mouths in relation
at the time  when above mentioned photo was taken in 1955

The area shown in the picture above had to be filled up with sediment from dredging operations that followed in the years to come. What prophets of the 1955 photo fails to disclose is that the 1955 photo was taken in a year of a great flood. And that the years between 1951 and 1955 the Estuary mouth was closed.
1955 and 1956 was marked by Great Floods and thus the abundance of water. 1956-1961 Mouth closed and was re-opened artificially on three occasions. 

This is agrivated by habitat destruction through Sugar Cane farming in the iMfolozi flood plains. No where for the sediment that floods down the iMfolozi River to settle except to was straight into the ocean. On the East Coast of Africa tidal movement and ocean action leads to sediment built up along the coast line and this is how the St Lucia Lake system was formed over the past 20 000 years.


Every single square meter of sediment catchment area has been drained and over run with Sugar Cane farming. Thus the proof that habitat destruction is the single most dangerous activity humans can endeavour on earth.  With out the functioning of these thousands of hectares of swamp and wetlands area the evolution of the St Lucia Estuary system has seized and no amount of Beach Driving or hard surface development can safe our Marine Echo-System. 

Some people claim that the major species lost because of St Lucia Estuary not functioning properly is the Tugela Shelf prawns species. Well it is the main source of food and is the basis of the food chain but as a youngster growing up in St Lucia we experienced hundreds of thousands of shad migrating into the system. Large 3 - 4 kilogram specimens. They never took any bait nor spoons. We sat on the boats and watch them swim past to the upper parts of the system. What for is a mystery to me.

For decades the Sport Fisherman has been blamed for the decline of the Fish populations and for decades more nature has been lost to farming and other hard surface developments. One wonders how competent are the Conservation Authorities if they have no specie list of migrating marine fish up and down the lake and concludes that beach driving is harmful to the environment?

by Petrus Viviers
081 342 7371



Saturday, February 18, 2012

New Born Hippo - St Lucia Wetlands


‎16 Febr 2012 - our newest little baby - we now have 6 babies on our two hour ADVANTAGE CRUISER hippo/croc boat cruise
HIPPO'S AND THEIR BABIES - photos ADVANTAGE CRUISER

St Lucia Estuary is a World Heritage site and the marine species is under great threat from the years of prolonged drought. The fresh water being fed in via the channel system into The St Lucia Estuary is feeding the mammals and reptiles with life giving water and they are flourishing under the current conditions. With new babies being born in the first half of the system passengers from the boat cruises has great sightings of mother baby interaction normally only seen on TV shows like Discovery.


One of these operators is Advantage Tours and Charters 

Advantage Tours and Charters is pleased to announce that our company is the first tour operator in KwaZulu Natal to have been approved by FTTSA, the Fair Trade and Tourism South Africa (Association).



by Petrus Viviers
     081 342 7371