Cape Town dam levels increase to 99,5%
30 September 2020
The total capacity of dams supplying the Cape Town metro increased from 98,2% to 99,5% between 21 September and 27 September 2020, a 1,3% rise from the previous week. Water consumption for the same period decreased by 15 million litres per day from an average of 666 million litres per day the previous week to 651 million litres per day. At the same time last year, dam levels were at 81,9%.
‘The region has reached a historic moment as our dam levels rise ever closer to the 100% mark, with just over 4 705 megalitres to go. After six long years of waiting for good rains, with a period of severe scarcity and rationing, seeing the dams this close to capacity is a triumph for the city.
‘The city has a long history of water stress due to being situated in a semi-arid region, and even before the brush with Day Zero, had achieved great success in building resilience through implementation of the water demand management policies in the early 2000s. Five years ago, the City’s water demand management programme was internationally recognised for its success in adapting to climate change, winning the Adaptation Implementation category at the 2015 C40 Cities awards. Full dams not only represent Capetonians’ success in saving water, but also represent a lot of hard work and skilled management for decades before the water crisis,’ said Mayoral Commmittee Member for Water and Waste, Alderman Xanthea Limberg.
‘A final decision regarding water restriction levels will be taken at the official end of the rainfall season after 31 October, in consultation with national government, the agriculture sector and smaller municipalities, which share water supply sources with Cape Town. Any decisions taken will be mindful of residents’ praiseworthy relationship with water, and the City will seek to find an arrangement most beneficial to residents, and one that is sustainable for our water security.
‘The City thanks everyone who helped navigate our way through the record-breaking drought, and raises a glass to the collective effort that brought us to this point of plenty. It is cause for well-deserved celebration,’ added Alderman Limberg.
In a few short years, we have gone from the worst drought to face our city and a potential ‘Day Zero’, to the real prospect of zero water restrictions besides the need to stay water-wise.
‘While climate uncertainty remains, residents will in the short-term be able to relax water saving efforts in good conscience due to the significant increase in dam levels. Should residents be comfortable enough to relax savings efforts, the related increased consumption levels will assist the City to cover costs while lowering water tariffs from the current second lowest tariff level, to the lowest, no restriction, water-wise tariff,’ said the Executive Mayor of Cape Town, Alderman Dan Plato.
Issued by City of Cape Town, 30 September 2020