Reservoir project on Bronberg ridge suspended PDF Print E-mail
News - Aktueel
Tuesday, 23 August 2016 19:55
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The proposed Rand Water Bronberg Reservoir and associated infrastructure application has been suspended.

Louise Kritzinger from Friends of the Faerie Glen Nature Reserve said that the suspension is due to complaints made by the Friends about alleged non-compliance with environmental impact assessment regulations.

Last month we reported that Rand Water wants to build a 100 mega litre (ML) reservoir and associated infrastructure on the Bronberg ridge where the critically endangered Juliana’s golden mole lives.
Rand Water is proposing to install the 100 ML reservoir next to its existing reservoir on the Bronberg ridge on property that belongs to Rand Water. The proposed development will be on portion 18 as well as the remaining extent of Tweefontein Farm 372 JR, located between Olympus and Shere.

Site
The reservoir will provide water to areas north of the Bronberg to Mamelodi and extending to Bronkhorstspruit and Ekandustria. According to the draft basic assessment report prepared by environmental assessment practitioner, Nemai Consulting, there is no appropriate reservoir site down-stream from the Bronberg up to the hills where the Mamelodi reservoirs are.
Friends of the Faerie Glen Nature Reserve do not agree.

According to a letter written to Rand Water by the Department of Environmental Affairs, the environmental impact assessment application was suspended because in their latest correspondence, dated 22 July, Friends of the Faerie Glen Nature Reserve alleged that they have reason to suspect that Nemai has not met the requirements of independence in preparing the draft report or when conducting the public participation process in connection with it.


The access road on route one

Suspicion
The Friends’ suspicion is based on the lack of independent or reliable assessment of alternative sites and failure to provide information on alternative access routes considered.

It is also based on failure to disclose information on the southern access to the site and failure to disclose information on the overflow-drainage pipeline and alternatives as well as the focus of the draft report and bias during the public meeting.

According to environmental regulations, the Department of Environmental Affairs must investigate these allegations. No activity on the project may start if an environmental authorisation has not been granted by the department.

Second
According to Kristy Robertson from Nemai Consulting there will be a second public review period for the second draft report. She said that this is the result of the comments and concerns raised at the public meeting as well as those that have been submitted.  

“The comments and concerns for the project have to be investigated and taken into consideration. Therefore the second public review period cannot be confirmed yet. All registered interested and affected parties will be updated with regards to this second public review period. A second public meeting will also take place during this second public review period,” Kristy said.


The place on the Bronberg ridge considered for erecting the 100 ML reservoir and
associated infrastructure

Meeting
The first public meeting, which formed part of the project’s public participation process, was held on
12 July at NG Kerk Tygerpoort in Shere. An audio recording of this meeting is available to download or listen to at: https://www.dropbox.com.

During the meeting four possible routes approaching the proposed reservoir construction site were discussed. Route one approaches the site from Hans Strijdom Drive (Solomon Mahlangu) via Olympus and Leander Roads and the access road between Leander and the reservoir.

Route two approaches the site from Atterbury Road via Olympus, Achilles and Leander Roads and the access road between Leander and the reservoir. Route three approaches the site from Lynwood Road extension (Graham Road) along Struben Road.

Route four approaches the site from Lynwood Road extension (Graham Road) via Frank Avenue, Catherine Road and James Road.

Mole
According to dr Sarita Maree, who did a Juliana’s golden mole specialist assessment for the proposed development, the new routes for temporary access roads run through areas with high densities of golden moles on the northern slope of the Bronberg, which is considered a high priority area for the conservation of this species.

Dr Maree’s assessment states that the reservoir project is likely to lead to the destruction of this highly threatened red data listed species in the area where the reservoir will be erected.
Phone Louise Kritzinger from Friends of the Faerie Glen Nature Reserve at 072-275-0614. Phone Kristy Robertson from Nemai Consulting at 011-781-1730 or 072-769-2850 or send an e-mail to This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .

 

 

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