Specialising in
Grey Water
and
Rainwater Harvesting systems in South Africa .

Deteriorating water quality – a greater threat than climate change

Posted by: Saving Water SA (Cape Town, South Africa) – partnered with Water Rhapsody conservation systems – 23 November 2010

SA needs to spend R360bn over the next 15 years on water treatment plants to secure its water supply.

Deteriorating water quality is arguably a greater threat to SA than climate change

The country also urgently needs to deal with acid mine drainage and invest in renewable energy, which does not pollute as much. This is according to a report released yesterday — H2O – CO2 Energy Equations for SA: Present Status, Future Scenarios and Proposed Solutions — which includes projections until 2025.

It was compiled by the Africa Earth Observatory Network, which is linked to the University of Cape Town.

The government has formed a task team to deal with acid mine drainage — the polluted water resulting from mining — but few details of its proposed solution have been made available.

According to the authors of the report, Stephanie de Villiers and Maarten de Wit, discussions about future usage of fossil fuels must also consider the environmental costs associated with coal, including the effect on water. Continue reading Deteriorating water quality – a greater threat than climate change

Bulk water augmentation project to cost City R1.7-billion

Posted by: Saving Water SA (Cape Town, South Africa) – partnered with Water Rhapsody conservation systems – 04 May 2010

The [Cape Town] city council will soon be asked to give the financial green light to a R1,7-billion, multi-year bulk water augmentation project.

Berg River Dam

A report discussed at the utility services portfolio committee yesterday notes that additional bulk water supply infrastructure has become critical, to increase the water treatment, bulk storage and conveyance capacity of the city’s bulk water supply system.

The total capital cost of the bulk water augmentation system is estimated at R1,7bn, and the implementation time frame at about six years.

In his budget speech in March, mayoral committee (Mayco) member for finance Ian Neilson said while the scheme would not significantly affect the 2010/11 financial year’s budget, a tariff increase, projected to be 8 percent above inflation, would need to be phased in in subsequent years.

The additional infrastructure was necessary to ensure the system could continue to supply potable water during peak demand periods, as population and economic growth fuelled demand.

“If the infrastructure is not implemented timeously, the risk of having to implement water restrictions in some areas of Cape Town, or across the entire city during peak water demand periods in the hot dry summer months, will progressively increase,” the report said. Continue reading Bulk water augmentation project to cost City R1.7-billion

Water quality deteriorating fast warns MP

Posted by: Saving Water SA (Cape Town, South Africa) – partnered with Water Rhapsody conservation systems – 16 April 2010

“Your department has let South Africa down, and seriously so,” Democratic Alliance MP Annette Lovemore told Water Affairs Minister Buyelwa Sonjica.

Lovemore, speaking during debate on the water affairs budget vote in the National Assembly, called on the minister to show “vital, critical and urgent leadership to address the current shocking level of mismanagement of our water resources”.

Excessive concentrations of nutrients stimulates algal growth resulting in the decrease of water quality and the emergence of harmful algal blooms.

Ground and surface water quality in South Africa was deteriorating fast, and people had died after drinking polluted water, she said.

“Animals in the Kruger National Park and ecosystems across the country are under threat. Tourism is compromised by the eutrophication of rivers and dams. Water treatment costs are escalating due to poor raw water quality.

“Farmers are unable to irrigate with polluted river water. The availability of water to sustain economic development and human and environmental health is diminishing. Opportunities are being seriously undermined,” Lovemore said.

United Democratic Movement leader Bantu Holomisa told MPs they were sitting on a time bomb. Continue reading Water quality deteriorating fast warns MP

Commercial washing powders destroy wetland

Posted by: Saving Water SA (Cape Town, South Africa) – partnered with Water Rhapsody conservation systems – 06 March 2010

The recommendation in a report addressed to the ‘Catchment Management section of the Cape Metropolitan Council’ into the catastrophic poisoning of a wetland in 1999 was never actioned. Are we to see a repeat of […]

Safe to drink - but not for laundry

Posted by: Saving Water SA (Cape Town, South Africa) – partnered with Water Rhapsody conservation systems – 11 February 2010

Manufacturing industries in King William’s Town were blamed yesterday for the contamination of the Buffalo River, which serves water systems to various residential areas.

Buffalo River. Photo by Teresa Schultz

Drinking water in King, […]