Refits and new standards reduce water consumption in WCG buildings
The Department of Transport and Public Works (DTPW) is already saving an estimated 25 600 litres of water a day after converting 320 conventional water flush urinals in Western Cape Government (WCG)-owned offices in the Cape Town city centre into waterless facilities. The second phase of this programme is to extend this roll out of waterless urinals to WCG-owned office facilities outside the city centre.
Further water-saving measures are in the pipeline. DTPW has started retrofitting old wash hand basin taps with flow restrictors wherever possible to reduce the amount of water they use. Metered (push) taps and dual flush cisterns will be installed in certain bathrooms as part of the office modernisation programme.
In addition, new buildings and renovations will be subject to much stricter water consumption standards, such as the use of air-cooled heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC) systems and black water treatment systems, where feasible. A maintenance team is on high alert to quickly respond to reports of water leaks. The Department is also engaged in an ongoing communication project to encourage staff to use water sparingly both at work and at home.
The time-of-use metering programme for WCG facilities is continuing and the recent appointment of a champion to monitor both water and electricity consumption is proving successful in identifying opportunities to intervene and save precious resources. The metering programme was developed and is being implemented on the primary premise of “measurement, monitoring and management”; the measurement of property performance data, the regular and rigorous monitoring of that performance data, and the management of the opportunities that arise.
All these efforts, including those being undertaken in the DTPW Health and Education facility portfolios, are helping to give effect to the WCG Water Business Continuity Plan (BCP) which is presently focused on demand-side interventions that reduce water consumption to protect essential water supplies. The other focus area of the WCG Water BCP is on supply-side interventions that will help to ensure that the essential service delivery requirements of each provincial department and entity can still be met when the supply of local municipal water is constrained.
Read more about the water BCP: https://www.westerncape.gov.za/general-publication/water-business-contin...