W54 MEDIA RELEASE: Drought crisis: City targeting those keeping Cape Town above 600 million litres

CITY OF CAPE TOWN

11 SEPTEMBER 2017

MEDIA RELEASE

Drought crisis: City targeting those keeping Cape Town above 600 million litres

Dam storage levels are currently at 37,2%, with useable water at 27,2%. Collective consumption is at 614 million litres of water per day. This is 114 million litres above the target of 500 million litres. The City is pulling out all stops to go after the water abusers who seemingly have no issue with paying a high tariff for using a lot of water. Read more below:

The City of Cape Town has installed more than 50 water management devices on the properties of water users who are not able to justify excessive usage and also those who seemingly do not mind paying more for water based on their high usage.

‘These water users who have failed to change their behaviour are the ones keeping us above 600 million litres of usage per day and firmly above our essential target of 500 million litres per day. As they are not heeding our calls, we will continue to roll out interventions to force them to lower their consumption.

‘The stubborn excessive users are also under the spotlight as part of our new Level 5 water restrictions. The commercial sector, where water usage has not declined, must bring consumption down by 20% year-on-year immediately or face penalties as per the same month of the previous year. We are also looking at fining domestic users who are constantly using more than 20 000 litres per month. Households who are, on average, between four and seven people who use 87 litres per person per day will not be affected by potential usage fines as they should be using well below 20 000 litres per month if they are sticking to the 87 litres.

‘But larger households, for instance of eight and more, will have to apply to the City via an affidavit to request an increase in water allocation. All allocations, across the board, are based on 87 litres per person per day. As always, the City will investigate and excessive users will be penalised,’ said the City’s Mayoral Committee Member for Informal Settlements, Water and Waste Services; and Energy, Councillor Xanthea Limberg.

Drought efforts continue to be centred around two key thrusts: being to reduce water usage to 500 million litres per day of collective consumption while at the same time bringing on board an additional emergency supply of 500 million litres per day to see the city through as much of summer 2017/18 as possible. These interventions go hand in hand and there cannot be one without the other as Cape Town, and the wider province, forges ahead through the worst drought in recorded history.

The City reminds residents to reduce water flow on their property through adjusting their private stopcocks or water control taps. This action will make a difference.

How to adjust a stopcock to reduce water flow (this should ideally be done during the day):
• Close the stopcock by turning it in a clockwise direction, and open it again (about a half turn)
• Go to the tap furthest away from the stopcock (this could be inside the house, in the back garden/yard or in an upstairs bathroom)
• Open the cold water tap and see if there is sufficient water flowing
• If required, adjust the stopcock a half turn at a time until a reasonable but reduced flow rate of water to the furthest cold water tap is achieved

For a video illustrating how to adjust a stopcock, please watch this video clip.

For information on how to meet the 87-litre per day usage requirement, residents should please visit the water restrictions page on the City’s website: www.capetown.gov.za/thinkwater and utilise our water calculator: http://bit.ly/ThinkWaterCalculatorCT

Residents can contact the City via email to water@capetown.gov.za for queries about the water pressure reduction, or to report contraventions of the water restrictions (evidence should be provided to assist the City’s enforcement efforts), or they can send an SMS to 31373. They can also now report water faults by sending a message via Whatsapp to 063 407 3699.

Water supplied by the City remains safe to drink and is tested in accordance with safety standards.

End

Issued by: Media Office, City of Cape Town

Media enquiries: Councillor Xanthea Limberg, Mayoral Committee Member for Informal Settlements, Water and Waste Services; and Energy, City of Cape Town, Tel: 021 400 1299 or Cell: 073 271 2054, Email: Xanthea.limberg@capetown.gov.za (please always copy media.account@capetown.gov.za)

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