Hessequa Municipality attained third place at the recent National Greenest Municipality Awards (NGMC) held in Bloemfontein on the 29th of August 2017. This means that the municipality is the third greenest in South Africa and with that achievement will also receive R2.5 million by means of projects and infrastructure as approved by the National Department of Environmental Affairs (DEA).
This achievement bespoke of the hard work and dedication to a greener environment from all directorates within the municipality. Hessequa Municipality was automatically entered into the National Greenest Competition as a result of being awarded the Provincial Greenest Municipality in 2015. The Provincial Greenest Municipality Awards (GMC) is an annual event for which each of the 30 municipalities in the Western Cape needs to enter. The competition entails a questionnaire which is provided by the Department of Environmental Affairs and Development Planning (DEA&DP) and which needs to be completed and submitted with an associated portfolio of evidence. The questionnaire is divided into different categories each dealing with the different departments within a municipality and are evaluated by the corresponding department at provincial level who are also responsible to verify the information by means of visits to all local authorities. Marks are assigned by each provincial department and tallied by their GMC coordination office after which the process and outcomes are audited by an independent auditor.
The different categories entails the following:
- Biodiversity Management
- Coastal Management
- Climate Change and Sustainable Energy Management
- Air Quality Management
- Waste Management
- Water Management
- Leadership and Compliance
The municipal who accrued the most points will be crowned as the greenest municipality in the Western Cape and automatically then qualify for entry into the NGMC where 9 municipalities representing the different provinces compete for the top three positions. The NGMC is two years behind those of the provinces, meaning that Hessequa Municipality only entered as a result of their 2015 achievement. The other results for the 2017 NGMC is Polokwane Municipality taking first place and Govan Mbeki Municipality taking second place.