Looming Water Crisis
Looming Water Crisis: Speaking at a news conference on Tuesday, Water and Sanitation Minister Nomvula Mokonyane said Gauteng’s water supply levels were so low they were virtually at the point of no return. The Vaal Dam is currently at 30.1% capacity and losing about 0.8% every week. If consumers and municipalities failed to adhere to the demand to cut water use by 15%, the dam’s level could drop to 25% by November 14, she said. A lack of rain and hot, dry weather meant less water filling up rivers and dams which usually supplied the Vaal River system. The system sourced water from 14 dams and supplied water to roughly 13 million people in Gauteng and parts of the North West and the Free State.
Rand Water chairperson, Tshidi Hashatse, said the entity was forced to take a tougher stance and water supplies to all municipalities across the province were cut by 15%. However, the onus was not only on the municipalities, but also on households to ensure they used their water wisely. In Gauteng, 79% of the water goes to urban domestic use, 9% to mining and other industrial activity, 6% to agriculture and 5% to power generation.