SWIMMING BEACH CLEANING POLICY
A draft swimming beach cleaning policy was submitted at the council meeting on 18 November, with the recommendation to adopt the policy as from 3 December 2014.
In short, the aim of the policy is to keep the beaches and coastal environment free of waste material, while protecting the natural coastal processes and dynamics.
Waste material refers to:
- Rubbish (bottles, paper, plastics, cans etc.) left behind by litter bugs. Picking up litter and emptying litter bins will be according to a cleaning schedule.
- Kelp will only be removed from areas demarcated as kelp cleaning areas, as identified by the Overstrand environmental section. Kelp will be placed at kelp deposit sites in front of the fore-dunes. No kelp may be removed by anyone unless they have a permit issued by the DAFF. The frequency of removal will be determined by the operational manager of each area.
- Marine animal stranding or carcasses (to be dealt with by the Dept of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries – DAFF);
- Oil, toxic waste or pollution (to be dealt with through the Overberg Disaster Management Policy).
However, the maintenance of ablution facilities does not form part of this policy, but cleaning will be done according to a schedule determined by the operational manager of each area.
Also, pet owners must still pick up their pet’s pooh, place it in a closed packet and dump it in the litter bins.
The policy will also apply to beach cleaning initiatives undertaken by private/independent organisations, in areas outside of swimming beach areas. The report states that keeping the coast waste free, is a shared responsibility between the municipality, its citizens, user groups and external organisations.
Identified Swimming Beaches
- Kleinmond: Palmiet, Kleinmond Blue Flag beach, Betty’s Bay (Silversands), Pringle Bay (main beach), Rooi Els.
- Hermanus: Grotto Blue Flag beach, Voëlklip, Kammabaai, Fick’s Pool, Langbaai, Sandbaai, Onrus-rivier, Hawston Blue Flag beach.
- Gansbaai: Pearly beach (entrance Beach Road, Castle beach, Caravan park), Buffeljachtsbaai, Uilenkraalsmond, Gansbaai (tidal pool), Stanfordsbaai, Kleinbaai (tidal pool), Blompark beach (Romansbaai).
BLUE FLAG BEACHES
The Blue Flag Beach status periods are:
- Grotto, from 1 December 2014 – 31 March 2015.
- Hawston, 15 December 2014 – 15 January 2015.
- Kleinmond, 15 December 2014 – 15 January 2015.
The reason stated for the shorter period of the Hawston and Kleinmond Blue Flag beaches is the decline of visitors outside the peak season.