South Africa 4.4.2017 04:33 pm

100 days of usable water left in CT as dam levels decline further

A screenshot of the video of the Theewaterskloof Dam. Picture: YouTube

A screenshot of the video of the Theewaterskloof Dam. Picture: YouTube

The City of Cape Town is now bringing forward ‘several emergency supply schemes’.

Dam levels in Cape Town continue to be critically low, with the City of Cape Town announcing this week that they had declined to 16.2% of usable water, which means, at current consumption levels, there are about 100 days of usable water left.

Less than a month ago, on March 13, the City warned there were only 105 days of usable water left at the then levels of consumption of 751 million litres a day, as dam levels were critically low, dropping to 30 percent, with the last 10 percent of dam water being mostly unusable.

READ MORE: Just more than 100 days of usable water left for CT

The City took to Twitter on Tuesday to call on residents to reduce their water use to about 100 litres a day.

A media statement published by the City of Cape Town Media Office on Monday further described how dam levels had declined to 26.2%, but only 16.2% of that water was usable. This is a 1% decrease from last week Tuesday, March 28, when the City of Cape Town tweeted there was only 17.3% of usable water left.

The City of Cape Town further pleaded with residents to help reduce the collective usage to 700 million litres a day, which is less than the 741-million-litres a day consumption over the past week. The City said that if each person used 100 litres a day, they would achieve their reduced consumption target.

The City also pointed out that the amount of rain that had fallen over parts of Cape Town would not “materially change the low levels of the dams”, and further said it was “critical” that they did not draw more than what was necessary during winter.

The City’s mayoral committee member for informal settlements, water and waste service, and energy, councillor Xanthea Limberg, was quoted in the statement as saying the City was bringing forward “several emergency supply schemes”.

“This includes the Table Mountain Group Aquifer, a small-scale desalination plant, intensifying the City’s pressure management and water demand management programmes and a R120 million small-scale wastewater reuse plant at the Zandvliet water treatment works which will be capable of producing 10 million litres of high quality drinking water per day to the central and southern suburbs of Cape Town,” said Limberg.

“We will progressively intensify water restrictions and will reduce water pressure further to lower consumption, which could in cases lead to intermittent supply over larger areas of the metro at the same time.”

The City also pointed out its plans should the dams reach below 10% of the storage levels. These included the implementation of “lifeline” water supply, which would involve “very stringent restrictions”; installation of water management devices; and, all legal, legislative and council processes would be followed.

In January, a video demonstrating the low water level of Theewaterskloof Dam – apparently the largest that serves Cape Town’s drinking water supply – was uploaded to YouTube in a bid to encourage people to understand why water restrictions were needed.

Watch the video here: 

Many have taken to Twitter to share their thoughts on the low dam water levels over the past few weeks:

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