Ex­pect stricter wa­ter re­stricti­ons soon, mi­nis­ter warns

Mossel Bay Advertiser - - News -

The We­stern Ca­pe MEC for Lo­cal Go­vern­ment, En­vi­ron­men­tal Af­fairs and De­ve­lop­ment Plan­ning, Mi­nis­ter An­ton B­re­dell, says his de­part­ment in­tends to im­ple­ment mo­re strin­gent wa­ter re­stricti­ons pro­vin­ci­al­ly, si­mi­lar to tho­se laid do­wn in the Ci­ty of Ca­pe To­wn.

The We­stern Ca­pe pro­vin­ce re­mains in the grip of the worst droug­ht in de­ca­des.

“We ha­ve been acti­ve­ly ma­na­ging the si­tu­a­ti­on - in so­me a­re­as - sin­ce 2010, w­hen the first re­stricti­ons we­re im­ple­men­ted. O­ver the past two y­e­ars mat­ters ha­ve been es­ca­la­ting and cur­rent­ly we see dams at re­cord low le­vels for this ti­me of the y­e­ar, af­ter our u­su­al win­ter rain­fall. Me­a­su­res en­for­ced

“As ga­zet­ted weeks ago, a pro­cess of as­ses­sment - and im­ple­men­ta­ti­on - of in­cre­a­sed re­stricti­ons in all the af­fected mu­ni­ci­pa­li­ties in the pro­vin­ce is ne­a­ring an end.

“An an­noun­ce­ment will be ma­de soon with re­gards to sug­ge­sted re­stricti­on le­vels to be im­ple­men­ted by mu­ni­ci­pa­li­ties. Cur­rent­ly the­re are re­stricti­ons in pla­ce a­cross the pro­vin­ce, but we be­lie­ve t­he­se re­stricti­ons may ha­ve to be ram­ped up sig­ni­fi­cant­ly in a­re­as w­he­re the droug­ht im­pact is most se­ve­re.

“In the e­vent this does not hap­pen, the pro­vin­ce will not he­si­ta­te to en­for­ce such me­a­su­res if nee­ded.”

B­re­dell has than­ked the pu­blic and pri­va­te sec­tor for on­going ef­forts and as­sis­tan­ce to da­te in cur­bing wa­ter usa­ge, but cau­ti­ons that with sum­mer loo­m­ing, de­mand is set to pick up a­gain.

“We ho­pe this y­e­ar that de­mand can be kept do­wn o­ver the hot, dry and bu­sy mont­hs and the­re­fo­re call on all par­ties to as­sist in a con­ti­nu­ed wa­ter-sa­vings dri­ve.”

The Wol­we­dans dam le­vel drop­ped to 73% last week, do­wn from 73.6% one week e­ar­lier. In com­pa­ri­son, the dam le­vel was at 97.4% a y­e­ar ago.

Dam le­vels a­cross the pro­vin­ce are par­ti­cu­lar­ly low. T­hee­wa­ters­kloof is cur­rent­ly at 28% (2016: 51%); Vo­ël­vlei Dam is at 27% (2016: 66%) and Clan­wil­li­am Dam 39.8% (2016: 100%). Brand­vlei Dam is 32% (2016: 53%).

The le­vel of the Wol­we­dans dam last week drop­ped to 73%, do­wn from 73.6%.

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