3/4 Full Dams, Authorities Still Urge Public to Use Water Sparingly | Western Cape Government

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3/4 Full Dams, Authorities Still Urge Public to Use Water Sparingly

3 July 2007
The Berg River Dam as part of the Berg Water Project (BWP) is now nearing completion and will be storing water, and be linked to the Regional Water Supply System. The linking of the two schemes- Berg Water Project and the Theewaterskloof Dam will allow water to flow from the BWP to the Dam via a tunnel system.

Combining the two storage dams will increase the total yield and the reliable volume of water from the dams. It is now necessary to link the pump station and pipeline from the Berg River Dam with the existing tunnel system from Theewaterskloof Dam. In order to do this, the tunnel will be shut down from the 12th -28th July 2007.

During this period, water will be supplied to the City of Cape Town from the other dams in the system. This will place a constraint on the availability of water, in view of the fact that Theewaterskloof supplies 40% of water to the Western Cape Water Supply System.

The Western Cape Water Supply System includes the Theewaterskloof, the Steenbras Upper, Steenbras Lower, the Voelvlei, Wemmershoek dams as well as the Palmiet pump storage scheme.

Although the dam levels are at 72,8% full, boosted by recent winter rains, the Department still urges the public to use water wisely, in view of the fact that the distribution of bulk water from the Department to its suppliers (Municipalities supplied with water from the system) will be limited.

The building of the Berg Water Project came as a precautionary measure, when the demand from the growing population of Cape Town and neighbouring Municipalities was outpacing the supply from the system. Thus as a strategy to consider viable options of water supply, the Department conducted a Reconciliation Study, to view technical, economic and socio-political aspects of supplying water to needy towns. Water conservation and demand management will be an integral part of this strategy to ensure that water is wisely and efficiently used and water resources are well managed and protected.

Existing users of the Western Cape Water Supply System include the Municipalities of Cape Town, Stellenbosch, Paarl, Wellington, and extends to towns on the West Coast, in the Swartland areas and the Riviersonderend catchment areas. Other dependents on the system are irrigators along the Berg, Riviersonderend and Eerste Rivers.

Nandi Mgwadlamba
Cell: 082 909 3493

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