Demonstration projects

Baynespruit Rehabilitation Project

This project is run by the Msunduzi Local Municipality, as one of the partners in the UEIP. The focus is on rehabilitating the Baynespruit River, a tributary of the Msunduzi River. The Msunduzi River is the main tributary of uMngeni River running through the city of Pietermaritzburg and receiving water from the Baynespruit. The water quality of the Baynespruit is poor due to pollution from illegal industrial waste discharge, solid waste, as well as poor stormwater and sanitation infrastructure. The activities of the project include alien plant control, rehabilitation of the river banks to reduce soil erosion, as well as citizen science and river clean-ups by schools in the area.

Save Midmar Project

This project is headed by the uMgungundlovu District Municipality with the KwaZulu-Natal Department of Economic Development, Tourism and Environmental Affairs coordinating activities to restore the ecological infrastructure within key areas around the dam. Midmar Dam supplies water to most of the population in the catchment, including the major cities of Pietermaritzburg and Durban. It is also known for hosting the most popular recreational event in the region, the Midmar Mile.  The quality of water in the dam has declined significantly due to contamination from sewerage and industrial waste, as well as nutrient inputs from agricultural activities upstream of the dam. The project focuses on repairing and constructing wastewater infrastructure, wetland rehabilitation, as well as community education and outreach.

Palmiet Rehabilitation Project

The project is led by eThekwini Metropolitan Municipality with assistance from researchers at the University of KwaZulu-Natal.  The project aims to address the deterioration of the water quality and quantity in the Palmiet River. The focus is on improved governance through developing a good relationship with catchment stakeholders to understand the socio-economic and political dynamics, particularly in the informal settlements around the Palmiet River. Challenges on this part of the catchment include solid waste management in the informal settlements, sewer leaks and illegal industrial effluent discharge.