Drought conditions the new normal for CT

Tuesday, July 25, 2017

The drought conditions experienced in Cape Town has become the new normal for the city as a water-scarce region.

“To adapt to the new normal, we have to change our behaviour drastically to save water while we still have water to be saved,” said City’s Mayoral Committee Member for Informal Settlements, Water and Waste Services and Energy, Xanthea Limberg.

The City of Cape Town has warned water users that failure to reduce consumption spells disaster for everyone.

The city said water usage has shot up to 643 million litres per day, which is 143 million litres above its target of 500 million litres of collective water use per day.

“Our latest consumption levels are extremely worrying as many people believe that they can go back to normal behaviour due to recent rains. These recent rains are not nearly enough as we are still in a drought crisis,” Limberg said.

Limberg said that too many people are not listening to the city’s warnings and appeals to reduce their consumption, adding that the rainfall has made a very small impact on the dam levels.

“The fact that we are still 143 million litres over our 500 million litre target per day, means that those who are not reducing consumption are playing with everyone’s future in Cape Town. The lower than average rainfall, coupled with unacceptably high consumption, will hurt us all as there are still far too many stubborn people who are not doing enough to save water so that we can build up of reserves for a terribly harsh 2017/18 summer.”

Dam storage levels are currently at 27.4%, but useable water is only at about 17.4%, which is very low for this time of the year. This time last year dam storage levels were at 47.6%, with useable water standing at 37.6%.

Limberg reiterated that the city is in a dire situation and Level 4b water restrictions require all water users to use less than 87 litres of water per person per day in total, irrespective of whether they are at home, work or elsewhere.

She reminded households who fail to reduce consumption that the start of the process that could restrict supply is firmly underway.

For information on how to adhere to the less than 87 litre usage requirement, residents should please visit the water restrictions page on the City’s website: www.capetown.gov.za/thinkwater and utilise our new water calculator: http://bit.ly/ThinkWaterCalculatorCT

Residents can also contact the city via email to water@capetown.gov.za for queries or to report contraventions of the water restrictions (evidence should be provided to assist the city’s enforcement efforts), or they can send an SMS to 31373. – SAnews.gov.za


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