City of CT moves ahead to relax water restrictions


September 10, 2018 4:01 pm Published by Leave your thoughts

CAPE TOWN – The City of Cape Town says it’s needed to lower water restrictions now without the blessing of the national Department of Water and Sanitation.

The municipality has on Monday announced level 6B water restrictions will be relaxed to level 5 from 1 October.

This will introduce water tariff cuts to 26.6% depending on consumption behaviour.

Deputy Mayor Ian Neilson says the municipality has been in discussion with the national department for some time about relaxing the restrictions.

“Essentially, all the users in the catchment have reviewed the hydrological information that’s available and the risk studies and we’ve all come to the conclusion that it is appropriate now for a stepwise relaxation of restrictions.”

Neilson says the city can no longer wait on the department

“The difficulty with the national department is that they’ve taken a broad approach that they are going to wait the right end of the season. We have waited for a response from them, but they’ve not responded. We don’t believe that there’s any merit in us now waiting for a response and so we’re moving ahead.”

The difference between Level 6B water restrictions and Level 5 water restrictions. Picture: Cindy Archillies/EWN

The City of Cape Town remains hopeful that the National Department of Water and Sanitation will relax water restrictions.

Neilson says the decision was based on rising dam levels, now up to 69%, as well as assessments and consultations with water users and municipalities.

The move comes despite the national Water and Sanitation Department insisting it will only review restrictions on the local government later this month and if the Western Cape’s average dam level reaches 85%.

As it stands, the department requires the province’s average dam level to rise by 25 percentage points before it will consider relaxing restrictions against the City of Cape Town.

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