Dr Kevin Winter accepting the gold Eco-Logic award on behalf of the Water Hub
The Water Hub in Franschhoek, which is a research, demonstration and learning site situated in an old wastewater treatment plant, has just won a gold Eco-Logic award. The Eco-Logic Awards identify individuals, organisations, and communities that positively contribute towards a sustainable world. The Water Hub in Franschhoek is a . The research is directed by Dr Kevin Winter, from UCT’s Environmental & Geographical Science Department and the Future Water Institute.
The work at the Water Hub began in 2017, with the conversion of drying beds into biofiltration cells that use natural media, such as stone aggregates and biochar, to treat contaminated water from an informal settlement to a quality that can be reused for safely irrigating vegetable gardens. Since then, the project has expanded to include food–energy–water nexus work, dewatering of maturation ponds, cool shacks, and studies on the mobility and persistence of emerging contaminants in the water, soil, and plant uptake.
The project has multiple partners from local and international universities and the government. The Water Hub attracts multiple visitors from schools, universities, and the public with an interest in sustainable water treatment and benefits. Work on the site has helped graduate several Masters’ students and a doctoral student. A multidisciplinary cohort of students continues to conduct innovative research on the site. The award acknowledges hard work and persistence, resulting in an improved understanding of nature-based processes and water reuse.
Eco-Logic Awards showcase people/organisations/ products/ services doing good for people and planet. The 2023 Eco Logic Awards took place recently at the Two Oceans Aquarium, in Cape Town and saw bronze, silver, and gold winners awarded across 13 categories. The awards are an important national platform to showcase and promote those individuals, organisations, products, and services that are doing good for ‘people and planet’. “Each year it becomes increasingly important and effective for us as individuals to play our part and contribute to solving today’s environmental challenges, and we can do this by leveraging our consumer spending power and supporting those that are committed to building a sustainable society and environment,” says David Parry-Davies, editor of The Enviropaedia and founder of the Eco-Logic Awards.
Story: Kevin Winter