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Annexure 2: Record of latest malfunctioning of CFWWTW

19 Mar 2009 Posted by in Environment | Comments

23 October 2008 – It was noted in the minutes of a FBEP steering committee meeting that ‘the CFWWTW seemed ‘smellier’ than normal and it was queried if there were any process issues.’

6 November 2008 – Letter from Richard Cammell, Chairperson of Zeekoevlei Civic Association to Councillor Basil Lee, enquiring on behalf of Zeekoevlei residents the cause of the ongoing sewage smells. [See Annexure 3: Complaint from Zeekoevlei Civic Association]

7 November 2008 – Acknowledgement of receipt of letter by Kevin Fawcett of the City of Cape Town, Head Operations (South) who promised an investigation.

20 November 2008 – Response from City who indicated that the anaerobic digesters had gone down because of the mechanical failure of both boilers, which heat the digesters. The City acknowledged that a problem was being experienced in the sludge handling section at CFWWTW, which had given rise to the spate of odour complaints being received from the neighbouring residents. [See Annexure 4: CoCT Response to ZCA Complaint, 20 January 2009]

19 January 2009 – Mr Panday of the Pelican Park Civic Association also complained about the continuing odour

29 January 2009 – Letter to Basil Lee from Kevin Fawcett, Manager Waste Water, explaining that while ‘The problem areas reported to you in November 2008 have been largely addressed’… The operational problems currently experienced at the Cape Flats WWTW…are unfortunately still related to the sludge handling section…The mechanical failure of an integral component of the thermal sludge drying plant has resulted in this unit being out of commission for the past three weeks…As a result…it has become necessary to discharge digested sludge directly on to on site emergency sludge lagoons.’  [See Annexure 5: CoCT Response to ZCA Complaint, 29 January 2009]

30 January 2009 – Positive ROD issued by DEADP

11 February 2009 – Follow up mail from Richard Cammell of ZCA after a new flurry of complaints from residents.

3 March 2009 – Excerpt of e-mail from Dave Brook of CoCT to Michaeel Collier of the ZCA.
‘The boilers which heat the sewage sludge in the thermal conditioning process have been brought back into operation, but the sewage sludge already in the treatment tanks had lost heat and had unfortunately turned septic. This septic sludge had to be decanted onto open drying beds and it is this sludge which is responsible for most of the above normal odour levels, presently being experienced…In addition to the sludge problem one of the air -blowers, which supplies essential air to the biological process, has suffered mechanical failure. Emergency repairs to this unit are receiving urgent attention.’ [See Annexure 6: CoCT Response to ZCA Complaint, 3 March 2009]

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