NEWS & ANALYSIS

Cape Town dam levels decrease to 78%

City says this is however an increase compared to last year at this time when levels were at 66,3%

Cape Town dam levels decrease to 78%

22 February 2021

The total capacity of dams supplying the Cape Town metro decreased by 2% in the last week, from 80%  the previous week to 78%. Daily water consumption for the same period decreased to 803 million litres per day, compared to 807 million litres the week before. At the same time last year, dam levels were at 66,3%.

Residents are reminded that while water restrictions were lifted from 1 November 2020, the following permanent regulations in the City’s Water By-law still apply:

Outdoor water use and groundwater

- Watering only allowed before 09:00 or after 18:00 (to avoid evaporation losses in the heat of the day). This applies to watering with municipal drinking water, and is also recommended for alternative water e.g. borehole and well-point water.

- Automated sprinkler systems (where permitted) must be able to be correctly positioned and be able to be adjusted to prevent water wastage.

- Hosepipes used for watering or washing vehicles, boats and caravans (when permitted) must be fitted with a controlling device such as a spray nozzle or automatic self-closing device.

- No hosing down of hard-surfaced or paved areas with municipal drinking water allowed. Water users, such as abattoirs, food-processing industries, care facilities, animal shelters and other industries or facilities with special needs (health/safety related only) must apply for exemption.

- Outdoor taps, except those on residential properties, must be secured to prevent unauthorised use.

- The City recommends that alternative water sources like boreholes and well-point water be used sparingly and efficiently.

Efficiency of taps, toilets and showers

- The maximum flow rate of new and replaced showerheads may not exceed seven litres per minute.

- The maximum flow rate of any tap installed at a washbasin may not exceed six litres per minute.  

- New or replaced toilet cisterns may not exceed six litres in capacity.

- Basins and showers provided at public facilities must be fitted with demand-type taps.

Swimming pools

- All swimming pools must be covered by a pool cover to avoid evaporation when not in use.

- Automatic top up systems using a float valve fed from a municipal drinking water source to supply swimming pools and garden ponds are not allowed.

Car washes

- Commercial car wash industries must comply with industry best-practice norms regarding water usage per car washed (e.g. recycling and re-using a minimum of 50% of the water used).

Construction sites

- Municipal drinking water may not be used to dampen building sand and other building material to prevent it from being blown away.

Leaks:

- Check your water fittings and pipes regularly for leaks. Residents can learn how to do so here.

For more information on new water sources, guidelines around alternative water sources such as boreholes and rainwater tanks, as well as tariff information, please visit http://www.capetown.gov.za/thinkwater

More information about the City’s Water Strategy can be found here: http://www.capetown.gov.za/general/cape-town-water-strategy  

Issued by Media Office, City of Cape Town, 23 February 2021