Water snippets

Water updates from South Africa

CoCT emergency desalination plant prepares to come online

The City of Cape Town V&A desalination plant, feeding 2.0 megalitres of fresh water into the city’s network per day, is currently finalising overall commissioning. 

“The seawater abstraction system is located close to the entrance to the V&A basins, but designed for optimised water quality and rapid construction. The desalination process separates the salts from the seawater and produces brine, which is then discharged back into the ocean – and the fresh water is fed into the City of Cape Town’s infrastructure networks. Care was taken to discharge the brine in an environmentally acceptable manner,” says Marthinus Retief, Principal Associate: Coastal, at WSP Maritime Africa. 

Located at the V&A Waterfront, this desalination plant forms part of a series of emergency water supply projects the City of Cape Town Municipality is implementing to supplement critically low water resource levels in the district.

ESI Africa, 8 May 2018 

Cape Town to raise water tariffs due to reduced revenue

Water usage in Cape Town has dropped significantly over the past year‚ but Gisela Kaiser‚ executive director of informal settlements‚ water and waste, said this also meant that the city’s revenue declined. According to the latest Water Outlook 2018 Report‚ the average water demand dropped by about 45% from February 2017 to February 2018.

The proposed new water tariffs would most heavily affect monthly water usage up to 10 500 litres. The tariff for water usage between zero and 6000 litres would increase from ZAR26.25 per 1000 litres to ZAR40.73. The tariff for usage between 6000 and 10 500 litres would increase from ZAR46 per 1000 litres to ZAR48.88 (excluding VAT). 

Indigent (low income) households‚ which the report states there are about 268 000 of in Cape Town‚ will not be charged for monthly water usage up to 10 500 litres. Using more than 10 500 litres will carry the same tariffs for all households. 

Business Day, 10 May 2018

Agri SA launches water desk to ensure farmers get fair share of precious resource

Agricultural industry association Agri SA has launched a water desk that will be dedicated to helping farmers across the country get equitable access to water. 

Several policy proposals could increase the cost of water and reduce the amounts available to agricultural users, Agri SA said in a statement.

The purpose of the water desk was to focus on policies and proposals, such as the draft National Water and Sanitation Master Plan and the National Water Resource Strategy. The desk would also give input on water research priorities and gather insight from top water experts.

Engineering News, 4 May 2018 

Greenpeace Africa launches petition to make water central to govt decision-making

Greenpeace Africa has launched a petition calling on President Cyril Ramaphosa to put water at the centre of all government decision-making.

Greenpeace Africa is asking the President to lead a process where administrative and policy steps are taken to mandate government departments, agencies and entities to place water at the centre of all their decision-making processes.

“We need to radically rethink our relationship to and management of water. Water as a fundamental human right must become more than just rhetoric. While the rains in Cape Town may slowly be starting, we must keep water sharply in focus. Water scarcity is an ongoing significant challenge as climate change is likely to worsen", says Greenpeace Africa senior climate and energy campaign manager Melita Steele.

Engineering News, 10 May 2018 

The above reflects a summary of certain news articles published during the preceding week. It is not an expression of opinion in respect of each matter, nor may it be considered as a disclosure of advice by any employee of Hogan Lovells.

For more information contact Charles MaraisPhilip van Rensburg or Mzimasi Mabokwe.  

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