Find Out Why We Should Save Water | Western Cape Government

Find Out Why We Should Save Water

Why Should We Save Water?

Water Dripping from TapFresh water is a scarce resource in the Western Cape, as rainfall  varies from year to year.

We depend on water to survive and our growing population places strain on our natural resources, especially water.  Everyone has a role to play in ensuring that our water is sustainable for future generations. A huge amount of fresh water is used to irrigate farmland for food production.

It is essential for manufacturing, particularly in heavy industries like electricity generation and iron and steel production, which need large amounts of water for cooling, or as a power source. A reliable supply of fresh water is critical for all households too.

Conserving water can also save energy. To pump the water from a central facility into your home, garden or office, energy is required to run the pumps. So saving water means using less energy which not only reduces your annual water bill but also your carbon footprint.

What we can do to save water and money

At Home

  • Take shorter showers and turn off the shower while soaping up, then turn it back on to rinse.
  • Ensure that your washing machine and dishwasher are fully loaded before starting them.
  • Plant in GroundCut down the amount of water flushed down the toilet. Put a two-litre plastic bottle full of water in the cistern of your toilet. This could save you up to 7 300 litres of water each year.
  • When washing dishes by hand, do not leave the water running for rinsing. And if you have a double-basin, fill one with soapy water and one with rinse water.
  • Install a system to pump grey water (from the washing machine, basins, shower and bath) to the garden, most households will eliminate the need for any additional garden watering.

In the Garden

  • Group plants with the same watering need together to avoid over-watering some, while under-watering others.
  • Put a covering layer around trees and plants. Covering will slow evaporation of moisture and will also discourage weed growth.
  • Only water your garden before 10:00 or after 16:00.
  • Water your lawn long enough for the moisture to soak down to the roots. A light sprinkling can evaporate quickly.
  • Plant in the right season. For winter rainfall areas, this is in autumn and early winter so the plants have a chance to develop their root systems before the dry season. In summer rainfall areas, it is spring and early summer for the same reason.

In the Industrial and Commercial Sector

  • Define water requirements for your department, building or unit of production.
  • Water ServicesAppoint a person to track water usage and identify strengths and weaknesses.
  • Ensure that people are aware of points and times to report major water losses from leaking or damaged pipes and hoses.
  • Encourage staff to report leaking taps and toilets.
  • Reduce leaks by turning taps off lightly and getting washers replaced when leaks are discovered.

These simple changes can help you save up to 10% on your annual water bill, without drastically changing your lifestyle.

Some more interesting and helpful information is available at:

The content on this page was last updated on 25 March 2020