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Summary

· Average water consumption for the past week increased by 36 million litres to 530 million litres per day

· Hot, windy weather over the weekend increased water consumption

· Dam levels improved slightly, but not as significantly as over the past two months, by 1,3% to 56,4% of storage capacity

· The hot winter weather shows that the climate is unpredictable and that we should continue to save water to build a buffer for summer

Although concerted water-saving efforts by the City and residents are still visibly under way, the influence of a warm week and an especially hot and windy weekend can clearly be seen in the water consumption data for the past week.

On Friday 20 July 2018, City officials, as well as officials from other municipalities and representatives from the agricultural sector, met with the National Department of Water and Sanitation to have a risk-based discussion on the water situation in the Western Cape. The meeting also considered the possible relaxation of water restrictions at an appropriate point in the near future.

‘During the meeting, it was agreed that there would be a phased approach to the recovery of the dams. This means that there would not be a big shift in restriction levels in one step.‘Due to the lack of rainfall over the past two weeks and the lower prospects over the coming weeks, it was decided that it was not appropriate to relax restrictions yet. The situation will again be assessed in August.

‘The City has maintained that a risk overview is required to determine when an appropriate time would be to relax restrictions slightly. The reason that an assessment is needed is born from two considerations: to ensure that water consumption remains as low as possible to boost the reserve water in the dams ahead of the summer months; and to help the dams recover adequately going forward. The other consideration is our consumers, the pressure on them and the sacrifices they have made to help Cape Town get through the severe drought.

‘If water restrictions are lowered to appropriate levels, the City will then lower the associated water tariffs. Restriction levels are linked to dam levels, and restriction tariffs are linked to the volume of water used by the city. This means that if the restriction level is reduced, individual use is expected to increase as the tariff decreases, ensuring the City receives the same total income. We will therefore continue to monitor the situation,’ said the City’s Executive Deputy Mayor, Alderman Ian Neilson.

Please visit www.capetown.gov.za/thinkwater for all water-related information and follow https://twitter.com/CityofCTAlerts for specific pressure management information.

Winter water-saving tips

· Stick to short, stop-start showers or skip a day if you can

· In winter, water may take a bit longer to heat up. Don’t let the cold water run down the drain while you wait for it to heat up. Rather collect it in a clean container and use it to wash dishes or laundry

· Install flow restrictors on indoor taps to reduce the flow rate to less than 6 litres per minute. Low-flow shower heads can reduce flow to a maximum of 10 litres per minute. You can also reduce the water pressure to your property by turning your stopcock lower and/or installing a flow restrictor on the main pipe connection from your meter

· Continue to harvest rainwater and use it to flush the toilet or to clean floors

· Continue to switch between using waterless hand sanitiser and using water and soap to clean hands where possible

We encourage all of our water users who are living the #50LitreLife to show their commitment to saving our precious water by getting a free profile picture at http://bit.ly/2IzvM2t

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