Ricochet News

Western Cape dam levels have dropped by 1% since last week

Oct 23, 2019
Western Cape dam levels have dropped by 1% since last week

George - The Western Cape Water Supply System (WCWSS) declined by 1% in the last week. This is according to the Department of Water and Sanitation (DWS) hydrological report of Monday.

Rashid Khan, Western Cape Provincial Head of DWS says that the System (WCWSS) is currently at 79,28% as compared to 80,22% last week.

“While we are witnessing a week by week slight drop on dam levels, our state of dams show our water management decisions are keeping us within the margins of water security,” says Khan.

Khan further states that the Gouritz River Catchment which covers the Central Karoo and the Southern Cape remains a worry. Local municipalities in that area are already preparing to announce restrictions for the summer.

The DWS is pleased that Olifants Doorn River Catchment remains stable as it has been above 90% for the past few weeks.

It adds that the Theerwaterskloof which is the largest dam is currently at 69, 29%, a notable increase from 58, 17 same time last year. While the water security is better off than the past 3 seasons, DWS encourages end users to stretch that bucket of water till the next replenishment.

Khan further says water conservation by now should be a daily conversation in every household.

“Let us not wait for the drought crisis to act. It is time, now to act and act without delay. The South African Weather Services (SAWS) predict heat waves across the country for the next few days, and such period is consistent with high water usage.

"The DWS is urging all water users to use water sparingly during this period. A special word of thanks to those that have implemented longer term recycling measures, using recycled water in lieu of municipal water," he says.

"This is in line with the departmental line of command that alternative sources of water should be utilized first and municipal supply mainly from surface waters should be utilized as a secondary source. This is done mainly to conserve our precious surface water resources.

"First of November marks the end of hydrological cycle, and soon after all the data is gathered, DWS will run its scientific yield model. The yield model is used as decision making support for allocations to users in the coming year.

"Large users, especially the agricultural sector rely on accurate information on water availability to plan their economic activities for the year ahead. Water is Life, Sanitation is Dignity.”

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