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City is first in Africa to invest in water supply catchment partnership<span><div>Climate change is a reality, and the City is taking proactive steps to ensure that our water sources are conserved and protected. Clearing of alien invasive plants is a key component of the City’s Water Strategy. By removing water-guzzling plants from key parts of the dam catchment, our surface water supply is maximised as more rain water can flow into the dams.</div><div><br></div><div>The City recognises the importance of healthy catchments in our water future and that’s why we’ve invested actively through a multi-partnership programme, the Greater Cape Town Water Fund (GCTWF) restoring the catchments of Wemmershoek, Berg River and Steenbras dams. This was in response to scientific reports which showed that over 55 billion litres of water - about two months of water for Cape Town - was being lost every year to alien invasive plants such as pine, gum and wattle trees.<br></div> <figure class="subtopic-fullsize-img"> <img src="" class="responsive" alt="" style="width:948px;" /> </figure>​​</span><span><div>Experts estimated that this loss was set to double to 100 billion litres of water every year, within 20 years, if not addressed. This is the most cost-effective supply intervention we have as part of our diverse mix of sources we’re bringing online to ensure a more secure water supply in future. It’s estimated that Cape Town will grow substantially over the coming decades, so this is an important initiative. </div><div><br></div><div>‘To turn the water losses into gains, this programme is tackling 54,300 hectares which should be cleared to increase water yield into our dams. To date, through the GCTWF, the City contributed to clearing 4,617 hectares, 370 green job opportunities have been created (165 women and 103 youth) and 243 people have been trained. <br></div> <figure class="subtopic-fullsize-img"> <img src="" class="responsive" alt="" style="width:948px;" /> </figure>​​</span><span><p>‘At a recent event held on 27 July 2022, this progress was celebrated and the highly-skilled and brave individuals who clear the hectares of alien invasive plants under difficult conditions high up in the mountains were recognised. It requires nerve and the ability to scale difficult, steep mountain terrain and remove the alien invasive plants from the high-angle slopes in the upper reaches of the catchment areas. The City also thanked The Nature Conservancy (TNC) for coordinating the programme, and the many other organisations and companies which contribute to this partnership. </p> <figure class="subtopic-fullsize-img"> <img src="" class="responsive" alt="" style="width:948px;" /> </figure>​​</span><div>‘The City will continue to work with stakeholders and partners to make the most of opportunities to optimise the economic, social and ecological benefits of our regional water resources,’ said Councillor Zahid Badroodien, the City’s Mayoral Committee Member for Water and Sanitation. </div><div><br></div><div><strong>Caption 1:</strong>  Alungile Mayekiso (left) and Asavela Ncaphayi (right).</div><div><br></div><div><strong>Caption 2:</strong> Ademola Ajagbe, TNC Africa Regional Managing Director; Louise Stafford TNC South Africa Program Director; Mayor Geordin Hill-Lewis and Mike Webster, the City’s Executive Director for Water and Sanitation.</div><div><br></div><div><strong>Caption 3:</strong> Group photo.</div><div><br></div><div><br></div><div><strong>End</strong><br></div><p><br></p>2022-08-13T22:00:00ZGP0|#1d539e44-7c8c-4646-887d-386dc1d95d70;L0|#01d539e44-7c8c-4646-887d-386dc1d95d70|City news;GTSet|#62efe227-07aa-45e7-944c-ceebacca891dGP0|#a3ac5825-3464-4e1b-a58b-75c8b257d806;L0|#0a3ac5825-3464-4e1b-a58b-75c8b257d806|water & sanitation;GTSet|#2e3de6c1-9951-4747-8f53-470629a399bb;GP0|#8ca48500-b401-48f2-bda0-8737ac3e51ab;L0|#08ca48500-b401-48f2-bda0-8737ac3e51ab|Alien invasive species;GP0|#c806300b-4b9d-45ca-8e89-cae3a77a1c85;L0|#0c806300b-4b9d-45ca-8e89-cae3a77a1c85|water conservation10

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