Cape Water Crisis: Mother City paints the town green with new water map


Cape Town - The City of Cape Town is working hard to avoid 'Day Zero' which is estimated to be 22 April 2018.

Recently, the City launched a water map and calls on residents to "paint Cape Town green" with water-saving efforts in order to get through the drought stage in the province.

This new initiative, part of the City's water-saving programme, identifies residential properties that are using less than 10 500 litres per month by allocating them with green dots. The map is a transparent tool and will assist in actively managing and reducing consumption to avoid Day Zero.

"We need absolutely everyone to come on board because the prospect of queuing daily for an allocation of 25 litres per person is a reality and we must do more to avoid it at all cost," says the City's executive mayor, Patricia de Lille.

"Day Zero comes when our dam levels reach 13.5% and most taps will be turned off.”

ALSO SEE: Cape Water Crisis: 'Wealthy tourists' are saving like locals

The City urges that the greener the city goes, the further Day Zero will be pushed. 

While consumers save, the City says it is pulling out all the stops to deliver additional water as fast as possible from groundwater, desalination and water re-use sources. 

"At this critical stage, water consumption remains too high for too many homes. The residential sector uses approximately 65% of our water allocation. This sector holds the key to helping us avoid Day Zero," says the City. 

In order to help avoid Day Zero, it has been stated that each household must reduce its consumption within the water restriction limits - 87 litres or less per person per day.

ALSO SEE: Cape Water Crisis: Cape Town water levy comment period extended

Consumption is indicated on the map as follows:

Dark green dot: household using less than 6 000 litres per month.

Light green dot: household using between 6 000 and 10 500 litres per month.

Grey dot: estimated readings when the water meter is not read for some reason, or if no information is available for the property.

The City says households with higher consumption may have many people living on the property or may have an undetected water leak. 

How the map works

The map only shows consumption for free-standing houses and not cluster housing, flats or other land uses. 
In addition, the map shows consumption for the previous month and is updated around the third week of the following month. 
Households using more than 10 500 litres per month are not shown on the map.

The City says by making consumption information available, it believes it will assist residents and communities to better manage water consumption. 

"It is crucial for everyone to play their part. The City will continue with extensive enforcement but it is not possible to police consumption at every household," the City says. 

See table below for how much water a household should be using based on the number of occupants.

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