When the City of Cape Town announced on 18 October that Level 3 water restrictions would be implemented from 1 November, 2016, it was intended to be a warning to all households in the Cape that a dry summer lay ahead and that serious consideration needed to be given to the way in which water is consumed.
This is according to Annette Evans, GM of the Institute of Estate Agents of SA, Western Cape, who said that as of November, watering of gardens (which includes lawns, beds, vegetable gardens, sports fields, parks and open spaces) with drinking water from the municipal supply is only allowed if using a bucket or watering container. Therefore, the use of hosepipes or automated irrigation systems is prohibited.
In addition, vehicles may only be washed with bucket water and swimming pools are only allowed to be topped up if they are fitted with pool covers. No automatic top-up systems and no portable play pools are allowed to be used.
The city has said that tariffs will also increase in proportion to the amount of water used in each household. The first 6kl are free of charge as usual but water will be charged per kilolitre after that – from R16,54 per kilolitre (if the household uses between 6kl and 10,5kl) to R200,16 per kilolitre (if the usage is above 50kl per month).
“The city has also said that households need to consider a longer-term view of what would happen if the drought extends into next season, and serious measures need to be taken to use water sparingly,” said Evans.
7 ways to save water
- Ensure there are no leaking taps or pipes in the home
- Install water-saving shower heads or taps and only shower instead of bathing
- If a bath is run, recycle that water into the flower beds or lawn
- Run the washing machine and dishwasher only when full
- Wash dishes once a day if done by hand
- Reduce the amount of water used in toilets when flushing by putting a plastic bottle filled with water inside the cistern
- Turn off taps while brushing teeth or washing hands