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News

  • Floods, Facebook and Floyd: what was hot in South Africa this past week

    Social media was last week awash by the #GautengFloods, according to analytics firm ROI Africa's latest report. According to stats siphoned from the web from the previous seven days, the rainfall in the country's smallest province became social media's most talked about event of the past week. Ironically, #DayZero also trended as Cape Town received minimal rainfall. Politics constituted the other share of the chatter, with Julius Malema and his EFF thrust firmly into the spotlight due to Floyd Shivambu's handling of a journalist outside Parliament. "#Malema told the media he is in charge of South Africa and he made several comments about...

  • Cape Town water usage jumps, dam levels drop to 22.7%

    So Cape Town... Do you want the good news or bad news first? It's a Monday, so let's start with the good news. The good news is that dam levels decreased by just 0.3% over the previous week. The bad news is that water consumption has spiked by more than 50-million litres per day compared to last Monday's figure. Last week Friday, deputy mayor Ian Neilson praised the City of Cape Town and its residents for its globally-recognised water saving efforts. "Our commendable water usage is increasingly recognised as a phenomenal achievement across the world. Thanks to this effort our dam levels are...

  • Deputy Mayor Neilson: ‘Team Cape Town’ now among world’s top water saving cities

    From practically flaming residents last year to praising them this: the City of Cape Town has gone through the entire mood spectrum during the water crisis. "The City of Cape Town and its residents have achieved a new water usage milestone," deputy mayor Ian Neilson notes in a release. In addition to praising the City's water conservation efforts, he also mentioned "Team Cape Town's" newfound water conservation fame. "Our commendable water usage is increasingly recognised as a phenomenal achievement across the world. Thanks to this effort our dam levels are declining at a lower weekly rate." "Just months ago we were, at times,...

  • ‘May you keep flying like superman in microgravity’: Twitter pays homage to Stephen Hawking

    Stephen Hawking, legendary British theoretical physicist and all-round great guy, has died at the age of 76 in Cambridge, England. Born in 1942 -- 300 years after the death of Greek astronomer Galileo Galilei -- Hawking was diagnosed with Lou Gehrig's disease at 21, an illness that stripped him of major muscle control. But that didn't stop the man from becoming one of the planet -- and possibly the universe's -- most loved scientists. After news of his passing broke Wednesday morning, Twitter was awash with messages of condolence and remembrance. "His passing has left an intellectual vacuum in his wake," wrote...

  • Cape Town dams: #DayZero or not, the city remains worryingly dry

    Despite what politicians may say about Cape Town's water crisis and the potential aversion of Day Zero, there's no denying that the dam levels remain low. Hell, you don't need to have a fancy hashtag or hold a press conference to see that. While the reduction of water consumption within the city, water augmentation projects, the donation of water and change of mindset have contributed to a notable push-back of Day Zero, dam levels this week dropped a further 0.6%. The combined level of Cape Town's Big Six dams now stands a 23% -- now just 9.5% from the quoted Day Zero...

  • 150k Cape Town households use less than 6000L per month

    It took a while, but finally the City of Cape Town knows just how much water its households used in January. Prior to Level 6A water shedding was implemented in February 2018, consumers were allocated 87 litres of water per day per person. As a result, households containing four occupants were urged to use less than 10 500 litres per day. The latest data reveals just how many households adhered to this figure. "uring January, a total of 314 000 households stepped up to the plate with their water-saving efforts and that 154 000 of these water heroes achieved the dark...

  • Cape Town dams: the Steenbras duo stem the Day Zero tide

    Cape Town's dams are this week 0.4% worse off than last, according to the latest dam level report published by the City. Data taken from the first week of March suggests that Cape Town now has just 23.6% of its surface storage available for use, or around 211 000 megalitres. That's enough to last the city until 15 July -- the new date for Day Zero. Water consumption also climbed slightly over the previous week. On average 531-million litres per day was drawn from the 14 dams serving Cape Town. 495-million of those litres were siphoned from the Big Six dams....

  • Everything you need to know about Cape Town’s Day Zero plans

    As Cape Town's water crisis deepens, and Day Zero draws nearer, a lot of questionable information is currently circulating on the internet. But the City of Cape Town is finally getting its act together -- at least in terms of providing regular updates on the progress of its disaster plan, what Day Zero will mean for all Capetonians, and how its water collection points will work. Although it's still calling on users to reduce consumption, in addition to new social media campaigns including #DefeatDayZero, there's no doubt that Mayor Patricia de Lille's words of "We have reached the point of no...

  • MWC 2018: 5 things we learnt from Fernando Alonso panel

    Mobile World Congress always plays host to a few big names every year, such as Will.i.am, Mark Zuckerberg and Lewis Hamilton. MWC 2018 saw double F1 champion Fernando Alonso make an appearance, as part of a panel discussion on technology and data usage in motorsport. We attended the session as part of our MWC coverage, and these are the key takeaways. McLaren runs 20 000 race simulations before a race McLaren's team runs numerous simulations before a race in order to figure out the best strategy. But just how many does "numerous" mean? "I think we do about 20 000 simulations of the...

  • Cape Town’s dams drop just 0.4% this week

    While Cape Town's southern suburbs and Cape Flats have been experiencing a mini Day Zero since Monday, the City today released its latest dam report. Overall dam levels are down by just 0.4% this week, falling from 24.4% to the nice round figure of 24%. Since 29 January, dam levels have fallen by just 2.3%. The lower decline this week is due to a number of factors. Last week saw a number of rain days recorded across the City's weather stations, including at the Theewaterskloof Dam and Steenbras catchment area. !function(e,t,s,i){var n="InfogramEmbeds",o=e.getElementsByTagName("script"),d=/^http:/.test(e.location)?"http:":"https:";if(/^\/{2}/.test(i)&&(i=d+i),window&&window.initialized)window.process&&window.process();else if(!e.getElementById(s)){var r=e.createElement("script");r.async=1,r.id=s,r.src=i,o.parentNode.insertBefore(r,o)}}(document,0,"infogram-async","https://e.infogram.com/js/dist/embed-loader-min.js");Share of WCWSS Dam Capacity in ML | Jan-Feb 2018Infogram The...

  • DWS ‘shrinks’ the Theewaterskloof Dam to get its last 10% of water

    A reservoir that usually holds more than 50% of Cape Town's surface water is now being drilled and shrunk for its last drop. The Department of Water and Sanitation (DWS) this week began "emergency works" at the city's largest dam, which will allow the remaining 10% of the water to be accessed. That 10%, rather annoyingly due to the design of the dam, remains on the opposite side of the dam's outlet pipe -- the pipe through which water from the dam is funneled and pumped to the city. But the DWS has a plan. Leonardo Manus, chief director for infrastructure operations...

  • Budget Speech 2018: Yes, Malusi Gigaba just quoted Kendrick Lamar

    After President Cyril Ramaphosa quoted Hugh Masekela during his SONA 2018 finale, Finance Minister Malusi Gigaba likely thought he'd do something similar to rouse the nation. His pick? The admirable Kendrick Lamar. But while the multi-Grammy winner is held in high esteem across the world, it's Gigaba's delivery of "Alright" that Twitter didn't quite enjoy. "We gon' be alright," he quipped, quoting complete with hand whip and before announcing an increase to sin tax. The social network broke soon after. I'm done with this budget speech, did Gigaba just quote Kendrick? 🤣🤣🤣 #BudgetSpeech2018 #Budget2018 — Sakkie Ntloko (@sk_shred) February 21, 2018 That Kendrick quote was...

  • Watch Malusi Gigaba deliver the 2018 Budget Speech live on YouTube

    Settle down, tune into Parliament's livestream, and clutch your bank balances tightly as Finance Minister Malusi Gigaba delivers his maiden budget speech. The budget speech lays out the government's expenditure road map for the year ahead, and is definitely as important as the State of the Nation Address. And judging by media chatter prior to the speech, this one likely won't go without drama. The 2018 Budget Speech begins at 2pm today The EFF have threatened to boycott the speech if President Cyril Ramaphosa does not sack Gigaba. Additionally, Gigaba -- who enjoyed a wonderful game of Candy Crush while the new SA...

  • Cape Town’s Day Zero moves to 9 July 2018

    Cape Town's infamous Day Zero has been pushed back once again. the City's deputy mayor Ian Neilson announced on Wednesday. "Day Zero, the day we may have to start queueing for water, has now moved to 9 July due to a weekly drop in dam levels of only 0.5%," he wrote in a statement. "This week’s lower rate of consumption can be attributed to the Groenland water reaching Steenbras Upper Dam last week and slightly increasing the dam level." The dam's level increased by 4.5% over the previous week. Neilson also attributed the push back to a "further reduction" in the city's...

  • South Africa’s social media was surprisingly positive last week

    The good feels are back in South Africa's social and news media spheres according to stats from analytics firm ROI Africa. It suggests that South Africa had just enjoyed one of its more positive weeks in recent memory. The firm's data -- which encompassed the past week ending 18 February -- suggests that Twitter went from its usually extremely nihilistic self to Cloud Cuckoo Land in a matter of hours. Jacob Zuma's resignation last Wednesday, together with Cyril Ramaphosa's rise contributed to more than 55% of local online news, ROIAfrica stated. "On the day of #Zuma’s resignation, 80% of our reporting and social...