Published: Fri, February 09, 2018
World News | By Laverne Osborne

Cape Town pushes possible tap closure on "Day Zero" to May

Cape Town pushes possible tap closure on

Cape Town has imposed severe water restrictions that limit residents to 50 litres per person per day in a bid to stretch its dwindling supplies.

Cape Town's water crisis has eased slightly following a reduction in consumption by residents and local farmers.

"Cape Town is not going to be the only city on this continent that's going to suffer significant water shortage", Jean-Pierre Labuschagne, an infrastructure expert with Deloitte, said at the launch of its Africa Construction Trends report.

Cape Town, a top global tourist destination, has both high-income oceanside neighborhoods and sprawling informal settlements.

The cost benefit of hosting tourists is overwhelmingly a more positive contribution than the water saved without them.

Neilson and Western Cape premier Helen Zille are due to meet Mokonyane on Wednesday afternoon and will ask her to publicly commit that Cape Town will get its full allocation.

Harris also maintained that visitors were more than welcome; however, they and their hosts should be mindful of the drought. Water supply networks are over-extended, limited reservoirs are over-relied on and there is a lack of water conservation and reuse.

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Responding to the proposed visit, Dogara said, a number of lawmakers would be pleased to listen to the French president. Neither man applauded at the end of the speech, with Simeoni describing the trip later as a "missed opportunity".

Ms Janine Myburgh, President of the Chamber, said there was convincing evidence that the desalination of sea water on an appropriate scale was now both viable and necessary in coastal towns.

As the city counts down to the day when it will be forced to turn off its public water supply, hotels have told guests to stop flushing only if they need to for now.

"We are busy diversifying the water source away from being dependent on dams", he assured.

The South African Weather Service is forecasting rain for Cape Town and the catchment area for its main dam at Theewaterskloof on Friday and Saturday‚ and anticipates rain in East London on Saturday and Sunday. "Therefore, if the rest of the economy grows by 1.5% this year and the Western Cape grows by 0%, the national GDP will be up by only 1.3%", he explained.

The city is working to stretch its water to June, when heavier rains are expected for the beginning of winter.

De Lille was removed from her water oversight role in January‚ and Neilson said she should explain why she did not move the city to level 6 water restrictions sooner.

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