A rock and a hard place

Rehabilitating landfill sites, such as Vissershok, is not just a nice thing to do – it’s vitally important. Cape Town is fast running out of open space, so the little that is left needs to be protected at all costs.

Extending the greenbelt will no doubt be a welcome relief for residents wanting to escape their increasingly congested suburbs. On the other hand, the pressing need for affordable housing will invariably see the City facing questions about whether the rehabilitated landfill couldn’t be put to better use accommodating a housing development.

Whatever the outcome, the one thing we shouldn’t lose sight of is that landfills are the hidden shame of our consumer-driven, throwaway society.

We can’t carry on burdening the earth and the ocean with all our non-biodegradable waste, hoping that out of sight is out of mind.

Maybe we’d think twice about the things we buy and the things we throw away if we all had to visit a landfill before being issued with a wheelie bin.