City to vote yes or no on plants

2018-09-17 15:17

A “strategic decision” on the City of Cape Town’s planned temporary desalination projects is set to be made this month.

The decision will determine if the City proceeds with the temporary desalination at the Cape Town harbour project, and if so, how.

Peter Flower, the City’s Water and Sanitation Department New Water Programme director confirmed the decision will be made, but did not provide a timeframe other than “during the course of September”.

The City identified seven sites for the possible installation of temporary desalination plants, including Hout Bay, Red Hill/Dido Valley, Harmony Park and Cape Town Harbour, with plants already running at Monwabisi, Strandfontein and the V&A Waterfront (“Water quality delays”, People’s Post, 29 May).

According to Flower, “as a result of some temporary technical challenges, the Monwabisi and V&A Waterfront plants are not yet consistently at full production”.

The Strandfontein plant is currently producing seven million litres daily (maximum capacity) with Monwabisi producing six million litres daily (of seven million litres daily maximum).

The V&A Waterfront is currently producing half a million litres daily (of two million litres daily maximum).

“The City can confirm that we are currently busy ramping up the production at the V&A Waterfront. According to the most recent production figures, we are now up to 0.8 million litres daily yesterday (Wednesday 5 September). We will continue ramping up production incrementally. It is anticipated that the temporary technical challenges will be resolved during September and full production will be achieved consistently at all three plants.”

Flower says various factors will be considered in the City’s decision-making, including dam levels, consumption levels and trends, the progress on groundwater abstraction projects and relative costs.

“It must be understood that the tenders relating to this project are for a temporary (two-year rental) seawater desalination plant and conveyance infrastructure. The strategic decision relating to these tenders in no way affects the City’s long-term planning for a permanent seawater desalination plant (site not yet selected).”

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