While the efforts of large sections of the population to save water are clear, the fact that we are not hitting our targets shows that there are still residents who are not using the resource as responsibly as they should be, given the current water shortage.
While the City of Cape Town is pleased with the improvement, this is still 29 million litres per day above the level required to ensure that water supply will last until the next rainy season. Dam levels have dropped to 46% and there are still a number of hot and dry months ahead. Unless all residents reduce their water usage to meet the target, even more stringent restrictions are likely in the near future, including a possible blanket ban on all watering of gardens.
The improvement in usage does, however, seem to indicate that more and more people are taking the restrictions seriously, and that the gravity of the situation is starting to sink in among those who up to now had not made any significant efforts to reduce their water use. It could also indicate that more people are spreading the message to save water within their communities. The City appeals to those residents who are choosing to be part of the solution to please keep it up.
Residents who are still not yet sure how much is required of them should please look to replicate their water consumption over the previous winter – the season when consumption traditionally hits a trough. This will mean using far less water for gardening, filling swimming pools, and other less essential purposes.
Furthermore, the City must again stress that all residents should perform leak checks on their property.
In order to do this, residents should turn off all taps and appliances in the house that use water, wait 30 – 60 minutes for the boiler to fill, and check whether the reading on their water meter continues to increase. If the meter is still turning, there is a leak somewhere on the internal plumbing.
Residents can also:
• ensure that all taps are fully closed and replace tap washers regularly. A dripping tap can waste 30 litres a day, which is equivalent to 10 000 litres a year
• fit tap aerators to reduce and spread the flow. This saves water yet feels like one is using the same amount of water
Residents who would like more information on restrictions or how to save water should please visit www.capetown.gov.za/thinkwater or send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org. Residents should please report contraventions of the restrictions to email@example.com
THE FUTURE OF CONSTANTIA IS IN YOUR HANDS