The City of Cape Town today hosted a drought crisis meeting and exhibition with the plumbing sector, focusing on water-saving and alternative water-related technologies. This is part of the City’s efforts to beat the drought together with our partners and water ambassadors.
The City’s Mayoral Committee Member for Informal Settlements, Water and Waste Services; and Energy, Councillor Xanthea Limberg, today addressed a delegation of 300 registered representatives of the plumbing industry, calling on them to focus on fixing leaks, efficient plumbing fittings and the responsible installation of alternative water technologies in their daily operations.
The City also launched a plumbing checklist to assist plumbers and residents in our collective efforts to beat the drought crisis. Leaks account for a large portion of water wastage and this is entirely avoidable if everyone takes action to find and fix them on their properties. For this reason, plumbers have an absolutely critical role to play in the battle to stave off Day Zero – the day when most of the taps in Cape Town will run dry. They can be true water ambassadors both through fixing leaks and retrofitting all kinds of properties with water-efficient technologies.
The checklist has been designed to serve as a guiding tool for when a plumber visits a home or business to make plumbing fittings efficient and to help them find and fix all leaks.
The event offered delegates an opportunity to view a range of 34 water-saving technology solutions suitable for a variety of challenges and budgets in the form of an exhibition space showcasing such products currently on the market. The City offered practical advice on the responsible installation of alternative water systems to ensure that they are up to speed on best practice in the face of growing demand. Meanwhile, the City is playing its part in this effort, with staff maintenance teams working overtime and a spend of over R700 million over a three-year period on private sector plumbing contracts for fixing leaks and retrofitting City buildings as far as possible.
‘We call on members of the plumbing sector to act as ambassadors for best practice on the ground. Their role in helping us all on the journey to adapting to the New Normal is incredibly important as we all work to review our operational methods. It is vital, however, that work is done responsibly and in accordance with our guidelines for alternative water systems.
‘This really is the plumbing sector’s time to shine, with business opportunities available for the savvy plumber to take advantage of in both the public and private spaces. More and more people are looking to explore alternative solutions such as greywater and rainwater harvesting systems. Our world is changing and their skills and expertise are invaluable in the broader effort to save water. We are hopeful that this engagement opens up a channel of communication with this group for a mutually constructive conversation going forward,’ said Councillor Limberg.
The plumbers’ checklist and other informative material developed by the City, including guidelines for the safe use of greywater and top ways to save indoors, are available for download on the City’s website at www.capetown.gov.za/thinkwater
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 use our water calculator: http://bit.ly/ThinkWaterCalculatorCT
Residents can contact the City via email to firstname.lastname@example.org 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.
Please note that water restrictions and usage targets could be changed at short notice to respond to this dynamic situation. Water supply interruptions could also be experienced as a result of advanced pressure management or rationing which is a way that the City is trying to reduce water usage to get Cape Town through the drought.
Water supplied by the City remains safe to drink and is tested in accordance with safety standards.