LISTEN: The toxic water lettuce in Vaal River explained

LISTEN: The toxic water lettuce in Vaal River explained

Here is an in-depth look at everything you need to know about the very serious Vaal River situation.

Vaal River water lettuce
X: @KoosdlRey

In December 2023, the Vaal River saw an explosion of water lettuce start to take over, causing major concern among residents and other authorities.

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Unfortunately, the situation is quite dire as the water lettuce is an invasive plant and this ever-growing plant is already leading to concerns and problems.

And it is showing no sign of going anywhere anytime soon.

Water lettuce is a poisonous and highly invasive free-floating freshwater weed that is normally found in lakes, dams, ponds, irrigation channels, and slow-moving waterways in tropical, sub-tropical, and warmer regions.

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As a result of this plant growing in such a way that covers the water in South African waterways, oxygen levels in the water decrease, which leads to fish dying and the overall loss of fauna and flora diversity.

It also threatens people's livelihoods as boating, fishing and other water activities are halted, meaning a decline in income and tourism.

Rand Water has started to take the necessary steps to try to put a stop to this invasive species before things get any worse.

@jacarandafm942 Toxic water lettuce is threatening SA water ways. #JacaDrive #ExplainedWell #water #nature #news #vaal #vaalriver #vaaldam #waterlettuce #education #pretoria #tiktoksa #johannesburg #tshwane #gauteng #northwest #potch ♬ original sound Jacaranda FM

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Main image courtesy of @KoosdlRey/X

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