Dept refutes water shortage claims

Johannesburg - Gauteng will not run out of water in the near future as conservationists have claimed, the national water affairs department said on Thursday.

"It is incorrect to say that 80% of SA's water will be so polluted that it will not be possible for it to be treated to potable quality and that the Gauteng province will be worst affected, as the Environment Conservation Association (ECA) claims," spokesperson Mava Scott said in a statement.

Gauteng had a "world class water system" boosted by water imports from places such as KwaZulu-Natal and Lesotho.

It was purified to comply with the department's standards, which were aligned with those of the World Health Organisation.

The department was responding to a media report on Tuesday quoting the ECA as estimating that in five years almost 80% of the country's fresh water would be so badly polluted that no process of purification in the country would be able to make it fit for human or animal consumption.

The department said the claims had no scientific backing.

It further had no knowledge of the group having had talks with the government on the issue.

The department's acting director general Nobubele Ngele said in the statement: "Our planning teams are continuously planning well into the future for all major towns and cities in the country".

The department called on groups, unions and individuals who wanted to contribute to efforts to protect the country's water to speak to its officials.

We live in a world where facts and fiction get blurred
In times of uncertainty you need journalism you can trust. For 14 free days, you can have access to a world of in-depth analyses, investigative journalism, top opinions and a range of features. Journalism strengthens democracy. Invest in the future today. Thereafter you will be billed R75 per month. You can cancel anytime and if you cancel within 14 days you won't be billed. 
Subscribe to News24
Voting Booth
Are you going to keep wearing a mask following the announcement that it is no longer required under law?
Please select an option Oops! Something went wrong, please try again later.
Results
No ways, I'm done
5% - 5692 votes
Yes, I still want to be cautious
91% - 107269 votes
Only certain circumstances
4% - 5095 votes
Vote
Rand - Dollar
16.27
-0.3%
Rand - Pound
19.81
-0.7%
Rand - Euro
17.05
-0.7%
Rand - Aus dollar
11.23
-0.6%
Rand - Yen
0.12
-0.9%
Gold
1,807.33
-0.6%
Silver
20.28
-2.2%
Palladium
1,938.00
-1.3%
Platinum
897.50
-2.2%
Brent Crude
116.26
-1.5%
Top 40
60,109
-2.4%
All Share
66,223
-2.3%
Resource 10
63,748
-3.2%
Industrial 25
79,405
-1.4%
Financial 15
14,686
-3.3%
All JSE data delayed by at least 15 minutes Iress logo
Editorial feedback and complaints

Contact the public editor with feedback for our journalists, complaints, queries or suggestions about articles on News24.

LEARN MORE