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Ethekwini Municipality - River management programme aids climate adaptation

Updated: Feb 7

Ethekwini Municipality - River management programme aids climate adaptation

The 7 July 2022 marked the culmination of a fruitful four-year partnership between the C40 Finance Facility (CFF) and eThekwini Municipality. The CFF has been actively supporting the Municipality to develop the Transformative River Management Programme (TRMP) that will mitigate the impacts of climate change as witnessed in the April floods.

The TRMP is an adaptation programme that builds on a range of river management projects in eThekwini, including the Sihlanzimvelo Community Stream Cleaning Programme. This programme involves utilising community co-operatives for stream management and in so doing builds enterprises and creates jobs. This programme currently has 80 co-operatives with approximately 600 people employed who manage 525km of rivers and water ways by removing invasive alien plants, litter, and debris. They are also trained in business management.

The TRMP aims to transform more than 7000 km of the City’s rivers and streams over a period of ten years as part of building a climate resilient and safe city. It has the potential to employ thousands more people as part of the green economy. The intention is to expand this programme and others to a broad range of river conditions, ecological infrastructures, land ownership and land use conditions to anchor the green economy, develop the social and economic capital of the City and build partnerships. The programme will provide a scalable and replicable model for how cities across the world can manage and maintain their waterways while maximising socio-economic benefits.

EThekwini Mayor Mxolisi Kaunda said, “Well managed ecosystems provide over R4 billion worth of services to our City and its residents annually. These waterways are not only responsible for providing water, but they also help regulate the impact of heavy rains and floods if well managed. Therefore, putting necessary resources in rivers and catchments must be central to the City’s climate adaptation response.”


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