Saving Water in Time of a Crisis- Cape Town

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Water saving sharon Atkins Supershazzer Blog

Imagine turning the tap on and no water comes out. No water for drinking, washing or cooking. This is where we are heading in the Cape. It is serious people and if you haven’t already you need to start taking action. We have a water crisis in Cape Town.

We are now on level 3B water restrictions in the Cape and dam levels are below 33% and dropping rapidly.

cape town dams level

Image from City of Cape Town/ Facebook

Everyone we know has taken measures to save water in their homes and offices. Buckets in the showers and while washing up dishes, no washing of cars, watering of gardens and filling up pools.

save water sharon atkins

Here are some suggestions of how you can save water. Most of these are common sense but we do need to be reminded;

☛ If you’re with family and it’s only a wee, save the flushing the toilet until the next time.

☛ No baths obviously and take short showers. No meditating, singing or being soothed by the hot spray. In the shower, wash and out.

☛ Close the tap when cleaning your teeth or shaving.

☛ Install a system to pump grey water (from the washing machine, basins, shower and bath) to the garden.

☛ Only use the washing machine when you have a full load.

☛ Fill your kettle with only as much water as you need.

☛ Put a layer of mulch around trees and plants. Covering will slow evaporation.

☛ Check that there are no leaks or leaking taps in your home or garden.

☛ If possible, install a rain-water tank.

☛ Cover your swimming pool to reduce water evaporation and don’t overfill or excessively backwash the pool.

☛ Don’t water the garden (even if you have a well point)- so the plants might die and the grass will go brown but grass will regenerate itself and let the plants die and instead plant water-wise plants that require very little watering and can survive from just the dew on the ground.

Speaking about well point water or bore hole water- where do you think that water comes from? It comes from our water source so don’t you dare be frivolous with it. It is not going to last forever and it is a not a gift from the gods for you to use at your will.

Here are some of the restrictions in place from the City of Cape Town

• You’re only allowed to water your garden with a bucket in the morning and evening. Put a bucket in the shower while you’re waiting for the water to warm up, and use the water you catch for watering plants.

• No watering is allowed within 48 hours of rainfall that provides adequate saturation. (Facilities/users making use of boreholes, treated effluent water, spring water or well points are not exempt.)

• All wellpoints and boreholes must be registered with the City and used efficiently to avoid wastage and evaporation.If alternative water sources are utilised, ensure that you display signage which is clearly visible from a public road or street.

• No hosing down of hard-surfaced or paved areas with potable (drinking) water

• The maximum showerhead flow rate may not exceed 10 litres per minute.

• Toilet cisterns may not exceed 9,5 litres in capacity.

• Use buckets to wash your vehicle. Put a bucket in the shower while you’re waiting for the water to warm up, and use the water you catch to was your vehicle.

• Manual top-up of swimming pools is allowed if the pool is fitted with a pool cover to slow down the evaporation of surface water. No automatic top-up systems are allowed.

• The use of portable play pools is not allowed.

Protect and conserve this precious resource of ours and if and when the rains do come, keep up these positive actions and don’t take the supply of water for granted.


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