George Municipality awarded first place – Eco – Logic Awards 2013

FLTR: Trevor Botha, Municipal Manager: George Municipality, Radie Loubser, Acting Manager: Parks and Recreation, Giel Goosen, Senior Manager: Environmental Services and Cllr Erasmus de Villiers, Portfolio Councillor: Environmental Affairs and Sport. Infront is Grace Notshokovu, Project Coordinator for the Greenest Municipality Competition.

FLTR: Trevor Botha, Municipal Manager: George Municipality, Radie Loubser, Acting Manager: Parks and Recreation, Giel Goosen, Senior Manager: Environmental Services and Cllr Erasmus de Villiers, Portfolio Councillor: Environmental Affairs and Sport. Infront is Grace Notshokovu, Project Coordinator for the Greenest Municipality Competition.

The George Municipality received the outstanding news that the organisation received the first place for Municipalities in the Eco-Logic Awards yesterday. Mr Giel Goosen, Senior Manager of Environmental Services attended the event in Johannesburg.

George Municipality is widely recognised as one of the best performing B-Municipalities in South Africa today. The municipality strives not only to deliver excellent quality services to its residents, but to do so in the most sustainable and environmentally sensitive manner that they practically can. George has received numerous environmental awards in recent years, and aims to continue to be an inspirational leader in the field of sustainable city management.

Mr Trevor Botha, Municipal Manager of George Municipality, said he is very proud of the achievements of the George Municipality and “specific our officials who consistently take the lead with other Municipalities.”

He thanked Grace Notshokovu, who drove the project in the Environmental Services department, as well as Goosen, Radie Loubser and Harold Basson, director: Civil Engineering Services. He said there constant work towards green projects and good services, makes the Municipality a winning team.

Councillor Erasmus de Villiers also praised the officials for their hard work. He said these good works comes from our souls because we following our vision and mission which is part of the strategic goals of the George Municipality – good governance in George, grow George, participation in George, quality services in George, keep George safe and green.

These awards, hosted by The Enviropaedia, in association with SABC 3 identify and give recognition to individuals, organisations and services that are making a real and measurable difference in creating a more sustainable world to live in.

George Municipality together with Ekurhuleni Municipality, eThekwini Municipality, Jeffares & Green /City of Cape Town and Pinnacle Conservation/Mossel Bay Municipality were finalists in the municipalities award (sponsored by Santam).

The Eco-Logic Awards have been created to enable and assist the consumer to participate in looking after our planet, through the conscious use of their consumer spending power. Every product or service purchased by a consumer has an environmental impact!

Botha said earlier the fact that the town once again is a finalist in the Ego-Logic Awards 2013 competition, is a feather in the cap for the municipality. He considers it to encourage the public to be more environmentally conscious and environmentally friendly . ” It took time to get people so far as to use the blue bag system, and now because of ongoing awareness people blame us if they don’t get their blue bags for recycling, delivered in time.

The municipality has come a long way with the beautification and greening of George. “About 10 years ago, the parks department at Community Services, started with the beautification of the towns’ entrances and traffic islands in York Street . It was later expanded to Sandkraal Road and Beach Road . The garden around the Civic Centre was also completely overhauled.”

Businesses in town took the responsibility in beautifying the middleman in York Street as part of the conservation and environmental cleanliness. Ten years ago there was an increased tree planting program , with approximately 30,000 trees being planted . 17,000 trees was planted in Thembalethu (citrus , macadamia and guava ), 4000 stone fruits ( peach , apple , pear and plum) in Conville, Lawaaikamp and Conville . Everything was planted inside people’s plots . The other trees are street trees planted in the rest of the town.
The municipality started cleaning rivers that run for about 60 km through town – it includes the Gwaiing, Schaapkop, Moolen, Black and Touwrivier.

Botha said: “We started the plantation clearing between Denneoord and the Garden Route dam in 2003 and burned the catchbergopvanggebied for better water run .
“ We started the Kaptein Dikkop amphitheater in Boomlaagte, Pacaltsdorp to beautify and maintain the area.

” The municipality has particular problems with pollution in beach areas. People was used to braaing anywhere and toilet facilities was vandalised. The council decided to limit the braaispots and only to beaches at Herolds Bay, Victoria Bay , Leentjiesklip and Gwaiing.

“With regards to waste , there is a repository for the disposal of used motor oil at the rubbish docking station at Gwaiing .
At a private institution a warehouse recycles, energy saving bulbs and other bulbs and electronic waste (e – waste) that contains heavy metals.
The municipality has also recently launched a project with Eden Waste forum where all schools in the municipal area was visited. By this visit we could ensure that schools get rid of chemicals in school laboratories in a safe manner. The municipality supports the botanical gardens trust financially and in other ways, and this gem is especially a great asset to children and the rest of the town.

We intend to close the landfill, compost green waste and recycle building material. Environmental Officers constantly gives guidance to the public on the greening and safe disposal of waste . Anti-Tabacco Week is also used to make people aware of the dangers of tobacco.

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