WC Water Update | Western Cape Government



WC Water Update

17 October 2018

17 October 2018

Dam levels in the Western Cape have remained largely stable over the past week with some areas continuing to show slight increases.

Anton Bredell, the minister of Local Government, Environmental Affairs and Development Planning in the Western Cape, says the average level for dams in the province is 66%.

“Dams feeding the City of Cape Town have increased slightly to above 75%. The greatest concern remains for the Karoo region of the Western Cape where the average level for dams still stands at below 20%. The good news is that the region is a summer rainfall region.”

Bredell has cautioned against water wastage and said that it is important to note in 2016 at this time, the average dam levels for the province were 61%, similar to current levels.

“Our water challenges are not going to go away, instead they will potentially only increase in years to come. This is why we need to see continued progress on planned water augmentation projects from national government, which has the constitutional mandate for bulk water supply.”

Bredell has welcomed the national Department of Water and Sanitation’s relaunch of the raising of the Clanwilliam Dam wall on the West Coast.

Bredell urges similar action with regards to other projects in the province.

“Other major options being considered for increasing water supply in the Western Cape includes:

  • The Berg River-Voëlvlei augmentation scheme which amounts to diverting surplus winter water into Voëlvlei Dam,

  • The development of the Aquifer projects in the City of Cape Town

  • Waste water treatment on a macro scale in all municipalities and

  • Desalination

“These are some of the bigger items. These projects will not be cheap. Let’s use desalination as an example: One study has shown that for the City of Cape Town to build a 450 Megalitre per day desalination plant could cost approximately R15 billion excluding VAT.  In addition, operating costs are high. This is a big cost and these affordability issues are accordingly the kind of matters the city and the province is grappling with, with an eye on long term water security.”

Major Dam statistics

Theewaterskloof dam – 58% full this week (2017: 26.9%. Last week: 58%)

Voëlvlei dam – 96% full this week (2017: 27%. Last week: 96%)

Bergriver Dam 99% full this week (2017: 66%. Last week: 99%).

Clanwilliam Dam 100%. (2017: 39%. Last week: 100%) 


Media Enquiries: 

James-Brent Styan

Spokesperson for the Minister of Local Government, Environmental Affairs and Development Planning, Anton Bredell

Mobile:                   084 583 1670

Telephone:            021 483 2820

E-mail:                    James-Brent.Styan@westerncape.gov.za