Cape dams seep lower as Gauteng water restrictions eased

2017-02-28 06:30 - Selene Brophy
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Cape Town - If you haven’t seen the gushing waters of the Vaal Dam’s sluice gates being opened over the weekend best you click here. The Vaal Dam hit 100% full capacity on Monday morning and is said to be in excess of 101,18% as flood alerts remain in place and water restrictions for Gauteng have been eased

SEE: Vaal dam overflows: Before and after pics show dramatic recovery

The Vaal is said to be built to with stand 126%, but the saturated banks of the river, as the overflow is released remain a key concern. On Sunday the Minister of Water and Sanitation, Nomvula Mokonyane warned that as there is still a possible impact of flooding, particularly for the town of Douglas and the farming community downstream of the town.

"We continue to request that all those along the Orange &Vaal Rivers be critically aware of the possible rise in the levels of the two rivers" 

Mokonyane stated the "deferred release from the Vaal Dam would be guided by the daily readings in the days to come".

With that said, temperatures are expected to soar in the south and west of the country, fueling the dry conditions in the country as the Western Cape dams have fallen a further 1.5%.

Dams supplying water to the City of Cape Town are roughly 10% lower this year - at 32.43% - compared to 40.31% in 2016. The Berg River, Gouritz River and Olifants River catchments recorded the same or slightly higher water levels.

Consumption is at 837 million litres of collective use per day, which is above the revised water consumption target of 700 million litres per day - with the City of Cape Town taking to revealing the top 100 water users in the province - see the full list here: Cape Town's top 100 water consumers revealed.

‘We may not have control over the weather, but we do have control over our use of potable water for non-essential purposes. Our actions can change the scenario,’ says the City’s Executive Mayor, Patricia de Lille.

De Lille stressed that water consumption needed to be lowered immediately. “Cape Town is in a water-scarce region and at all times, but especially during this drought crisis, we need to use water sparingly.”

The City warned regular enforcement operations remain in place.  

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