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2008-09-22: City Parks and Toyota partner to clean the City’s rivers to mark Arbor Month

TO MARK Arbor Month, which is hosted annually in South Africa in September, Johannesburg City Parks, the entity responsible for greening in the City and Toyota SA, the car manufacturer have teamed up to address environmental degradation of the cities river bodies.

150 people, including learners, community representatives, contractors funded by Toyota and City Parks officials will host a clean-up of Thokoza Park, along Old Potch Road in Soweto on Tuesday, 23 September 2008 at 11:00.

The aim of the clean-up is to restore the integrity of the water body along Thokoza Park which is frequented by over 10 000 people over peak weekends and to highlight the importance of communities becoming actively involved in the upkeep of open spaces.

City Parks and Toyota have previously engaged in the clean-up of the water body in Diepsloot and the Sandspruit, in Paulshof, in the north of Joburg. A more intensive river rehabilitation programme is set to be rolled out in 2009, with the Jukskei River becoming the key focus area.

“The biggest concern is the huge amounts of refuse, waste material and chemicals that are being deposited in the city’s open spaces and river bodies,” stated Councillor Prema Naidoo the Member of the Mayoral Committee (MMC) responsible for the environment in Johannesburg. Adding that, “as responsible citizens we have a moral responsibility to educate our neighbours, business and our children that this activity has major health implications on the quality of life of all who live in close proximity to these water bodies.”

Residents are also reminded that while South Africa is amongst one of the countries with the highest quality of drinking water in the world, we are still not immune to the global threats of water shortages and the concerns regarding the pollution of drinking water. Residents are urged to save water and to refrain from throwing their waste in dams and rivers.

“Johannesburg City Parks encourages business to adopt water bodies in close proximity to their offices and to encourage their employees to become part of a sustainable effort to increase the quality of our rivers”, added, Naidoo. Enquiries on tree planting and river clean-ups can be directed to 011 712-6600 or email trees@jhbcityparks.comThis e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .