CT cuts water quota further as Day Zero looms


Despite the acute water shortage, some people ignore the suggestion to use only 87 litres of water per person a day, Limberg said.

Besides a huge public awareness campaign, teams have also intensified leak detection and repairs, as well as extending the use of treated effluent water which offset the use of drinking water for non-potable purposes, De Lille said.

Cape Town, a city seated beneath the Table Mountain and was once a haven of abundant natural water may just become the first major city in the world to run out of water as a result of three years of low rainfall and a growing population and an increase in water consumption.

A sombre Patricia de Lille addressed media from the Civic Centre on Thursday morning, telling journalists that since 60% of Capetonians were not complying with water restrictions, "we must now force them".

Authorities want to reduce the city's consumption to 500 million liters a day - half the amount used two years ago.

Earlier this year, the city published a name-and-shame list of the worst water offenders in Cape Town, and it says it is issuing fines for the heaviest water users.

Level 6B restrictions will also limit irrigation using boreholes and wellpoints.

Measures brought into place in early January included strict conservation of available water and the setting of daily usage limits at 87 litres.

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The work will take a "number of weeks", Milner said, adding a request for intelligence assessments or reports which could help the investigation.

"Teams are working around the clock to deliver the emergency plan for desalination, groundwater and water reuse".

Recognising the potentially massive impact on business and industry, Limberg said the city would attempt to keep water flowing in the CBD area, where many businesses are located.

These are hospitals and clinics, standpipes in informal settlements and the 200 points of distribution (PoDs) where people can collect their allocated 25 litres per person.

The City of Cape Town has this week made spying on friends, family or even neighbours' water usage habits even easier.

This, as detailed plans for the "eventuality" of the City's Day Zero contingency plans will be released next week. Most schools and many businesses would have to close.

"It could be that re-establishment of basic water services will only happen deep into the winter months".

The Cape Town Dams System consisting of six dams serving mainly City of Cape Town this week is at 26.6%.