The Knysna Water Crunch

Posted by: Saving Water SA (Cape Town, South Africa) –┬ápartnered with Water Rhapsody conservation systems
03 December 2009

Continued drought conditions along the Southern Cape have necessitated the Provincial authorities to call on all affected municipalities to tighten up on existing measures to ensure that water consumption is reduced, and Knysna municipality may consider installing flow restrictors if necessary.

South African Weather Services have forecast below normal rainfall for the next three months exacerbating the drought situation, which is likely to worsen.

Knysna executive mayor Eleanore Bouw-Spies said that local authorities have been urged to implement stricter measures to ensure that consumption is reduced. “The provincial minister of Local Government, Environmental Affairs and Development Planning said that they would like to see at least 30% savings from local businesses, and households must bring consumption down to 15-kilolitre per month.” The average usage per month for a 4-member family averages around 24kl.

Knysna Lagoon. Photo by Zaphgod under Creative Commons licence 2.0

Knysna Lagoon. Photo by Zaphgod under Creative Commons licence 2.0

Existing water restrictions prohibit the watering of gardens and the washing of vehicles, with the use of hosepipes for any purpose prohibited.

Appeals to the Knysna public to reduce water consumption has not realised the savings, and Bouw-Spies has warned that more law enforcement officers have been employed to monitor the situation. Offenders will be issued fines. “These fines will from now on reflect on municipal accounts,” she said. Her municipality is monitoring the top 100 consumers on a weekly basis.

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