Cape Water Update: Water consumption reduced by 60% in 3 years, no Day Zero in 2018

2018-03-08 09:33 - Gabi Zietsman
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Cape Town - Cape Town has set a new water standard as the municipality announced that the taps will not be turned off in 2018.

The City released data that shows how much water consumption has reduced since 2015 - from using 1.2 billion litres of water a day to only 516 million a day in February - cutting consumption by about 60%.

SEE: #WaterScarcity: Cape Town has a new water mascot and thankfully it's nothing like Splash!

In 2015 an individual's residential use would be 209 litres a day, but this year that has been reduced to an average of 87 litres.

Compared to other cities, Cape Town is teaching a master class in reducing water consumption. Melbourne in Australia took 12 years to reduce the same percentage of water consumption, while the state of California in the US only managed to drop to 21% between 2012 and 2017. São Paulo also dropped its consumption by the same amount between 2012 to 2015 during a severe drought.

Visit from Bloomberg

Ex-New York mayor and philanthropist Michael Bloomberg visited Western Cape's Theewaterskloof Dam, his first undertaking as the newly appointed UN Special Envoy for Climate Action alongside water experts and scientists. They looked at how a severe drought affects cities and discussed what needs to be done to make countries more resilient to the severe effects of climate change.

“The extreme drought here in Cape Town should be a wake-up call for all who think that climate change is some far-off threat. It's already here, it's making droughts and storms more dangerous, and we've got to do more to keep it from getting worse," says Bloomberg.

MAP: Where travellers don't have to worry about water restrictions in the Western Cape

Cape Town becoming a 'benchmark'

Wesgro CEO, Tim Harris is proud of Cape Town becoming a water resilient city.

“The very severe drought in the Cape has legitimately been a cause of concern both at home and abroad. But there is another, even more compelling story, which is starting to emerge on the back of it. This is the story about Cape Town’s remarkable reduction in water consumption, which is likely unmatched by any other city in the world during such a short period.

"This reduction is world-class in its own right, and is now setting the benchmark for countries around the world. This is good news for investors and visitors alike."

He also reiterated that everyone should continue with their water saving measures to make sure we continue in this direction.

"We urge all residents and visitors, and the private and public sectors, to continue to work together in building a water resilient destination. If we continue on this successful path, we will become global leaders in the fight against climate change, and will build a destination that is even more attractive to visit, live, work, play and invest in.

SEE: Drought travel trends: When adversity becomes a specialty

DA Leader Mmusi Maimane announced in Wednesday that Day Zero will not happen this year if water consumption stays at current levels and the region experiences good winter rainfall. At the moment dam levels are at 27% and he congratulated Cape Town's residents on reducing their consumption.

Even our water-saving mascot got upgraded from the terrifying Splashy to the adorable Wanda the Penguin, the brainchild of Active Education.