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Know where your tap water comes from and the need to diversify its sources<p>Cape Town's water supply system is currently a combination of surface water and groundwater, which together with water treatment facilities, provide a reliable supply of high-quality water to residents. As we approach winter, our dam levels currently stand at a<strong> </strong>65%. This is higher than the same time last year, when dam levels were at<strong> </strong>58,6%.<br></p><p>Based on past experience with the drought, we know that the natural water cycle and its associated supply can be unreliable. Despite nature's resilience, a number of factors threaten the stability of the water cycle such as weather patterns becoming more intense due to climate change, resulting in droughts, floods, and unpredictable precipitation. These problems are worsened by urbanisation. Also, even if it rains, not all of the rainwater falls in our dams and catchment areas. The downpour that lands in our river network travels through many parts of the city, where densification and pollution often compromise water quality. <br></p><p>The City ensures that all of the water collected from dams, reservoirs, and groundwater sources, is treated extensively at water treatment plants, to make it safe for drinking. It is also tested regularly at multiple sampling points to check that it is of a high quality, meeting national SANS 241 standards, before it is distributed to households and businesses.<br></p><p><span><figure class="subtopic-fullsize-img"><img class="responsive" src="https://resource.capetown.gov.za/cityassets/Media%20Images%202/Cape%20Flats%20Aquifer%20drilling.jpg" alt="" style="width:948px;" /></figure></span></p><p>More broadly, the City's Water Strategy was developed to prepare for water security in the future. By diversifying our sources of water supply and employing technologies for water reuse and desalination to add to the mix, an additional 120 - 170 million litres per day (ML/d) could be added to the water supply system.<br></p><p><strong>The City's New Water Programme (NWP) consists of four strategic components being pursued to augment the City's daily water supply by 300 million litres, by 2040:</strong></p><ul><li><strong>Water re-use:</strong> Implementing purified recycled wastewater, adding 70ML/d to 100ML/d.</li><li><strong>Desalination:</strong> Extracting salt from seawater to yield 50ML/d to 70ML/d.</li><li><strong>Clearing of invasive plant species and various management interventions:</strong> Harnessing water from rivers to contribute an additional 40ML/d.</li><li><strong>Groundwater:</strong> Drilling boreholes and tapping springs securing over 100ML/d.<br></li></ul><p>'Various projects contributing to the New Water Programme are already progressing well such as the R2 billion upgrade of Zandvliet Wastewater Treatment Works and approximately R2,6bn investment into the Cape Flats Aquifer project. <br></p><p>'The City will continue to phase in other components of the programme in the long-term, to see our plan become a reality. As we move forward, educational engagements are being scheduled through sub-councils to provide a platform for residents to access information about the New Water Programme. This will provide an opportunity for residents to have their concerns addressed or questions answered by expert multidisciplinary teams working on the roll-out of water reuse and desalination. We encourage residents to connect with their sub-councils so they are informed of the educational engagements when they are available,' said Councillor Zahid Badroodien, Mayoral Committee Member for Water Sanitation.<br></p><p>​<br></p><p><strong>End</strong><br></p>2024-04-09T22:00:00ZGP0|#1d539e44-7c8c-4646-887d-386dc1d95d70;L0|#01d539e44-7c8c-4646-887d-386dc1d95d70|City news;GTSet|#62efe227-07aa-45e7-944c-ceebacca891dGP0|#424fbb2f-e27c-44db-b853-dbbdb893d37a;L0|#0424fbb2f-e27c-44db-b853-dbbdb893d37a|Water;GTSet|#2e3de6c1-9951-4747-8f53-470629a399bb1Media Office, City of Cape Town0

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