Working for Water attacks alien species at Graskop Gorge Lift Co

In preparation for World Environment Day celebrated globally on 5 June, Graskop Gorge Lift Company has been hard at word ridding the area of invasive weeds.

GM Quinton Pretorius says that in keeping with the motto ‘Water is Life’, they have called in the assistance of the Working for Water High Altitude teams to eradicate the invasive plant species that threaten the indigenous forest and stream flow around the gorge.

Quinton worked for years with Working for Water and Working on Fire as national general manager of the High Altitude Teams Project, and knows the importance of not allowing alien vegetation to overwhelm fragile ecosystems.

“We understand and appreciate that our facility is based not far from the source of the Graskop Gorge river that feeds our waterfall. Whatever we do, affects the people and environment downstream from us. By eradicating the invasive Pinus, Eucalyptus and foreign Acacia species around our premises and along the riparian zones, we are securing streamflow for the future.

“Water is the lifeblood of our forest and all the living species that depend on it for their survival, including humans. What we do upstream has a direct effect on everything downstream and that is why we asked for assistance from Working for Water; they are state-sponsored experts and use the correct herbicides that will not leach or migrate into our pristine environment.

Since 1974, World Environment Day has been celebrated every year on 5 June, engaging governments, businesses and citizens to focus their efforts on a pressing environmental issue. The theme this year is biodiversity. Interestingly, invasive species are the second largest threat to biodiversity after habitat loss.

“We at Graskop Gorge Lift Company and the Big Swing wish everyone a happy World Environment Day and ask that we all respect and nurture our beautiful environment,” says Quinton.