Western Cape dams: Careful water use urged as levels remain 'steady'

2019-08-27 06:08
(Jenni Evans, News24)

(Jenni Evans, News24)

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The Western Cape's overall dam levels remained "steady", dropping slightly from 65.9% last week to the current 65.7%, but the City of Cape Town's dams went up 0.01% to 81.8%. 

However, although the levels are more positive than the pre-two-minute shower days of 2017, cautious water use was urged as the rainy season tapers off.

"The Western Cape is a winter rainfall area and we get the bulk of our rainfall largely in these months to the end of August," said Local Government, Environmental Affairs and Development Planning MEC Anton Bredell on Monday. 

"While we have seen a massive improvement in dam levels around the province over the past few weeks we can never be comfortable enough. We want to urge continued responsible water usage."

READ: Cape farmers lose 25% of orchards, vineyards as result of drought - expert

The City warned that although its dam levels were positive, the hot, dry, and windy months were coming.

Even though residents, businesses and visitors are still using under 650 million litres per day, this year's rainfall was not as much as hoped for.

Water consumption in the city came in at 568 million litres per day between August 19 and 25.

"Residents should note that fuller dams do not necessarily mean we are out of the woods yet," said Mayoral Committee Member for Water and Waste Xanthea Limberg.

Here are the latest dam level figures:

  • Voëlvlei Dam - 87.2% full this week (2018: 67%. Last week: 86%)
  • Berg River Dam - 99.7% full this week (2018: 93.1%. Last week: 100%).
  • Theewaterskloof Dam - 71.6% full this week (2018: 45.2%. Last week: 71.5%
  • Clanwilliam Dam - 98.6% full this week (2018: 99%. Last week: 98.8%

In the meantime, preparatory work has started on the R3.5bn long-term project to raise the wall of Clanwilliam Dam for agriculture purposes.

The national department of water and sanitation project is expected to be completed in 2023.

The Western Cape legislature was told last week that work was also under way to form a committee to allocate water fairly when the project was completed.

Clearing alien vegetation from water catchment areas is also taking place.

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Read more on:    cape town  |  water

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