In 2007 a company called Really Useful Investments 219 (Pty) Ltd (RUI) bought a piece of land on the beach, next to the Disa River, in Hout Bay. Thereafter RUI developed the land as a housing estate. In the process, they dumped their rubble into the river. The community and neighbours became concerned about the environmental harm and brought an urgent court application. The City of Cape Town stepped in and took the developer to court.
The court made an order not only prohibiting the developer from dumping but even took it a step further: the developer has to restore the river and the area to its natural state and pay the legal costs.
This is a resounding victory for the environment and developers should take note.