Cape Town Mayor Patricia De Lille announced in a media briefing today that the Aquifers around Cape Town can deliver more water than expected.

She said that a recent ground water survey conducted last year established that at least 150-million litres of water per day can be delivered by the Cape Flats, Table Mountain Group and Atlantis Aquifers.

“Prime locations were identified to abstract more water from these three aquifers. Drill rigs will be moved onto the sites this week in the Cape Flats Aquifer,” De Lille said.

She added that more resources will now be used to drill underground.

“This action to help Cape Town get through the drought is based on an environmentally sensitive approach that will ensure sustainable water abstraction, ensuring generations of Capetonians will benefit from this ground water,” De Lille said.

According to the survey conducted by earth science consultancy Umvoto, the Cape Flats Aquifer will deliver 80-million litres per day, the Table Mountain Aquifer will deliver 40-million litres per day and the Atlantis Aquifer will deliver 30-million litres per day.

However, the current water status paints a bleak picture and Cape Town could see day zero move closer. The total storage has fallen by 1,3%. As of this week dam levels stand at 29,7% and the City’s overall water usage is 578-million litres per day. Right now there is only about 19,7% of usable water left.

“Consumption remains too high with half of Cape Town’s residents still not keeping to the 87 liters of water per person per day,” said the mayor.

De Lille also used the opportunity to stress that the City needs to raise money for the water augmentation projects. Her proposed water levy received around 45 000 comments so far – the deadline for submissions has been extended to midnight Monday 15 January.

“I want to take this opportunity to explain to Capetonians what we are proposing, Only 464 216 households out of the total of 707 814 will be affected by the charge. Of these, 52 510 will pay more than R150 per month, the rest will pay less than this. The majority will pay less than R47 per month.” she explained.

De Lille also said that she remains committed and denies being distracted prior to the ongoing allegations and investigation against her. “I am fully focused and I am committed to ensure that the City does not run out of water,” she said. Plans to start drilling will start in the coming weeks.

Picture: Twitter

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