Monday, 28 August 2017

Water shortage in the Western Cape of South Africa


The Western Cape of South Africa is facing a severe water shortage.

Over the last few years, our dam levels have gradually dropped, and this year, the Western Cape was classified as a “disaster area”.

The City of Cape Town and the National Department of Water and Sanitation measures dam levels to check how much water is available for the region and whether water restrictions are necessary for residents and businesses.


Institution of Level 5 water restrictions have been implemented in Cape Town. Residents have been given a target for daily usage of 87 litres. Watch this quick video to see how much 87 litres really is https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3dONnab7NFE


The Reality as of October 2017:





What's the state of Western Cape dams?

The province is supplied with water by 44 main dams. These dams collectively hold a maximum storage capacity of 1870.4 million cubic meters.

To date, many of the dams in our province have reported levels drastically lower than levels recorded at the same time during previous years. The average storage across the province on 4 October is 37.3%

Earthstompers as a business strives to do our part for water conservation, and encourages our guests to use a minimum amount of water when visiting.



What Earthstompers does to save water:



Transport – We wash our vehicles between tours only, and we use a car wash that has a grey-water system (collected rain water). Even though some dust might gather on the outside of the car, we will keep windows and inside of the vehicle clean on tour.


Accommodation – We encourage our accommodation partners to use water-responsible practices.


The tour – Our guides brief all clients about the water shortage & how they can decrease their usage, while in on tour and in South Africa.


What can you do as a traveler in South Africa, to save water?


Wash not, waste not

Most travelers know that hotels give patrons the option of not having their towels laundered daily. This is such an easy and convenient way to help save water; simply hang your towel up instead of leaving it in the bath or shower and you contribute to massive water and electricity savings.


Turn off the taps 


Many people brush their teeth while leaving the water running – it’s just a quick brush after all. What they don’t realize is that keeping the tap open can waste up to six liters per minute. The same goes for shaving; filling the basin leads to a significant reduction in water wastage.


Shorter showers


An eight minute shower uses about 120 litres of water. Sticking to shorter showers still gets the job done, but with less water wastage. Showers generally use less water than baths, and so the Western Cape government has requested that people always shower instead of using baths, and when showering, to keep it to two minutes or less.


Think before you flush the toilet


Only flush the toilet when necessary. We have a saying; If it’s yellow, let it mellow. If it’s brown, flush it down :)

Throw tissues in the dustbin, not the toilet

By practicing these tips, tourists can dramatically reduce water consumption, without being inconvenienced.




Sources:

City of Cape Town: http://www.capetown.gov.za/Family%20and%20home/residential-utility-services/residential-water-and-sanitation-services/this-weeks-dam-levels

Western Cape Government: https://www.westerncape.gov.za/news/premier-declares-wc-disaster-area-%E2%80%93-initiates-project-%E2%80%9Cavoiding-day-zero

Ground Up: http://www.groundup.org.za/article/whats-causing-cape-towns-water-crisis/

News 24: http://www.news24.com/SouthAfrica/News/whats-causing-cape-towns-water-crisis-20170517

Love Cape Town: http://www.capetown.travel/visitors/plan/information/healthy-safe-travel/water-wise-tips-for-tourists-visiting-drought-stricken-western-cape

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