As November draws to a close, the City of Cape Town will review water restrictions and decide whether they should remain in place or be adjusted to better suit the current dam levels.
Currently, the City is in the process of consulting with the National Department of Water and Sanitation (DWS) as well as other users of the Western Cape Water Supply system from other municipalities to customers and agricultural users.
Although the Cape’s dams are far better off than they were five years ago, there are many concerns. Some feel that relaxing the restrictions now, could see a major depletion in dam levels. This would destroy the hard work so many Capetonians have done to reduce their water usage and adjust to the restrictions.
“DWS sets allocations and restrictions for all users within the WCWSS, at the beginning of each hydrological year which begins of November 1. DWS has however requested extra time to run their own modeling, and they will be informing all users by the end of the month what the allocations will be and if any restrictions will be imposed. The City thereafter will be able to determine the levels going forward,” said Mayco member Xanthia Limberg
Dam levels are currently at a bountiful 83.6% overall capacity with four main dams above 90% full. Water storage and usage has been steady and locals have proven their ability to save water even with warmer weather conditions.
The Mother City’s lowest dam is Theewaterskloof at 74.7%.
While considerations are underway, many cannot help but think of those suffering in the Karoo and Northern Cape as the drought has only worsened in recent months.
“We are aware that residents are anxious to know whether water restrictions will remain in place. We would like to remind the public that this must still be decided in consultation with the National Department of Water and Sanitation (DWS) and all users of the Western Cape Water Supply System, including agricultural customers and other municipalities. DWS have scheduled a meeting at the end of November in which their modelling for the region’s next hydrological year will be presented for consideration and discussion by all users of the system,” the City told IOL.
Summer is about to kickoff in Cape Town and this is also a cause for concern as increasing temperatures always increase water consumption and residents are worried this could have negative effects on our water storage.
Over the next few weeks, updates will be released on the City’s site at www.capetown.gov.za/thinkwater which could have the Mother City experiencing a relaxing of restrictions.