Cape Town water consumption spikes as dam levels remain critical

FILE: The City has also appealed to the courts for tougher action to assist with the tackling non-compliance of Level 4 restrictions.

CAPE TOWN - Water users in Cape Town are being asked not to increase their consumption.

Dam storage levels are at 23,1 percent. With the last 10 percent of a dam’s water mostly not being useable, dam levels are effectively at 13,1 percent. The City of Cape Town says consumption has again shot up and is 40 million litres per day above the target of 600 million litres per day. 

Rainfall uncertainty remains high.

WATCH: Water Affairs Department sets out strategy for Cape Town water crisis

Members of the public are advised not to relax their water-saving efforts. Despite the recent storm and recent rains, dam levels have only increased by about 3,7 percent. 

"Due to the severity of the drought, above-target consumption, as well as the unpredictability of climatic conditions, Level 4 water restrictions remain in place indefinitely over the long-term and could be intensified if warranted," a statement from the City said on Monday.

"Apart from safeguarding our current sustainability, we must think about building additional reserve capacity by continuing with the most hard-hitting water-saving efforts that we can muster. It may take a few seasons of normal rainfall for the dams to recover and we must bear in mind that we are expecting an even tougher summer in 2018."

‘All consumers must continue to use less than 100 litres per person per day in total, whether at work, home, school or elsewhere,’ said the City’s Mayoral Committee Member for Informal Settlements, Water and Waste Services; and Energy, Councillor Xanthea Limberg.

READ: What's next for Western Cape drought?

The City’s Water Resilience Task Team has been set up to boost the City’s response to drought, to ensure that acute water shortages are avoided.

The City has also appealed to the courts for tougher action to assist with the tackling non-compliance of Level 4 restrictions.

The City has managed to negotiate the maximum spot fine for a contravention and that it be raised to R5,000, rising to R10,000 or even a prison sentence for serious or repeat offences as per the new fine schedule for Level 4 restrictions.

 

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