Aquaculture sector gets a boost with EIA approval | Infrastructure news

The Aquaculture sector in South Africa is set for a major boost with the recent landmark approval of an Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) for a 440 ha Land-based Aquaculture Development Zone (ADZ) and Desalination plant in Zone 10 of the Coega Special Economic Zone (SEZ).

According to Dr Keith Du Plessis Coega Development Corporation (CDC) Manager: Project Development the approval of the EIA is a major leap towards fulfilling the Coega SEZ’s vision to locate one of the largest ADZ’s in South Africa on one geographical footprint, in the Coega SEZ and respond to the severe water shortages experienced by the Nelson Mandela Bay (NMB).

A plug and play environment

The CDC says that it has been found that failure by especially smaller companies to obtain EIA approval often result in projects never seeing the light of day.  Because of this, the aquaculture sector in South Africa is largely untapped and underperforming.

“The approved EIA relieves the financial burden from the investor as it would ordinarily take up to two years for companies seeking to establish an aquaculture facility and or a desalination plant at the Coega SEZ. This is evident of the CDC’s value proposition as a plug and play environment, where investors have shortened timeframes from when they enquire about investing to when they have access to market,” adds Dr Du Plessis.

A solution to NMBs water problems

The NMB Municipality, this month announced that the water levels of the Metro supply dams have reached an all-time low of just above 24%. The CDC now has authorisation to develop facilities for the desalination of water with a maximum capacity of 60 million litres (Ml) per day.

“This capacity, if tapped into, could provide for almost quarter of Nelson Mandela Metro’s current water consumption needs (currently at approximately 260 Ml/day).  We are a capable and potential solution to the water problems experienced in the Metro,” Du Plessis concludes.

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