Cape Town’s dam storage drops again to 36.8%

water tap stock cape town dam

Every one of Cape Town’s largest dams, bar one, lost storage capacity over the past week, this according to the City of Cape Town’s latest dam level report (pdf).

This comes after dam levels fell from 38.5% to 37.8% a week ago. The second successive drop in the Western Cape Water Supply Scheme now puts Cape Town’s dam storage at 36.8%.

That’s an overall loss of around nine-billion litres, or just over two-week’s worth of water at our current consumption rate.

A dam-by-dam breakdown paints an even bleaker picture.

cape town dam storage levels 13 november 2017

Image: City of Cape Town

The Theewaterskloof Dam fell by 1.2% over the previous week, largely due to “high winds and hot weather which contributed to evaporation,” Cape Town’s major Patricia de Lille said in a statement.

The Berg River (down 0.9%), Steenbras Lower and Upper (down 1.1% and 0.4% respectively) and the Voëlvlei Dam (down 0.9%) all lost stored capacity.

Only the Wemmershoek Dam showed gains this week, up by just 0.3% over the previous week.

cape town rainfall 13 november 2017

Image: City of Cape Town

But there’s more grim news. All eight of Cape Town’s minor dams either lost stored capacity this week, or remained stable. No gains were noted.

The downward trend continues across the Western Cape as well.

This week, Beaufort West ran out of dam storage, and is now relying on boreholes and recycled water.

As of 6 November, a total of nine dams across the province harboured less than 10% of their designed capacity.

Notably, Cape Town has seemingly decreased its water consumption yet again.

During the previous week, the city’s residents used just over 580-million litres per day. This is down from over 600-million the previous week.

We have managed to halve Cape Town’s water usage with the help of 51% of our water users who have put tremendous efforts into saving water. We will only get through this crisis together,” de Lille concluded.

Feature image: Pixabay

Andy Walker, former editor


Sign up to our newsletter to get the latest in digital insights. sign up

Welcome to Memeburn

Sign up to our newsletter to get the latest in digital insights.