The Western Cape enjoyed unusually warm weather this winter with sprinkles of rainfall throughout the months. The City of Cape Town has now warned residents to use water sparingly following figures released by the national Department of Water and Sanitation (DWS) which indicate the total dam storage level in the province is currently at 63.57% capacity.
This is quite a dip from last year’s levels of 76.62%.
The DWS and local government’s MEC Anton Bredell have addressed their mounting concerns by calling on the public to use less water for the next three months to enable dam levels to increase during what is known as the Western Cape’s rainy seasons, as per IOL.
“Wemmershoek, Voëlvlei, Steenbras upper and lower, Theewaterskloof and Berg River dams, which provide water to Cape Town, are currently at a combined level of 75.42%. This is significantly lower than the level of 97.53% recorded at the same time last year for these dams,” Bredell noted.
In June, the South African Weather Service (SAWS) noted that Cape Town experienced some of its hottest days for winter, with temperatures rising to a toasty 30.9-degrees – the highest since 1999.
These unusually warm temperatures have resulted in below-normal rainfall and could lead to a water shortage should these conditions persist as the season continues.
The Western Cape is not the only province to be issued a warning. Residents of several provinces, including Eastern Cape, KwaZulu-Natal and the North West, have been cautioned to save water where they can to avoid low dam levels in the future, as per The South African.