cape town

Cape Town Residents use Half the Amount of Water than Before ‘Day Zero’

Cape Town, South Africa, faces a major water crisis, but the city has managed to stave off Day Zero – that is, the day the city would actually run out of water completely – for the foreseeable future. Still, with “severe climate change looming, the city of 4 million will face a reckoning sooner or later,” writes climate expert Ashley Dawson, a native of Cape Town, in the Washington Post. “And it will not be alone.”

Cape Town’s water crisis – and the city’s response to it – has shown that planning for a drier future needs to be comprehensive, integrated and realistic, Dawson writes.

waterless urinals, cape town drought

But Cape Town has also shown us that such crises can be successfully addressed.

Today, Cape Town residents are using nearly 50% less water than they were in 2015 and reductions are expected to continue, says Klaus Reichardt, CEO and founder of Waterless Co...

To read more on this article, visit Environmental Leader by clicking here.

Cape Town Headed Towards Waterless Future

by Lucas Joel

The city of Cape Town, South Africa, is bone dry. In 2017, after two straight years of drought, a third drought year offered more of the same. This past January, city leaders announced that they would shut off the taps to the municipal water supply in April because that was when “Day Zero” — the day when the water supply would run dry — was predicted to occur. Day Zero has since been pushed back to sometime in 2019, but, for 4 million Capetonians, living under the specter of a day without water is the new normal, and signs of that reality litter the city. Sometimes literally.

Childrenshandswaterdrop.jpg

Above a toilet in the bathroom at the University of Cape Town’s (UCT) Future Water Institute (FWI), I found a sign that looked like a board game. “TO AVOID DAY ZERO,” the sign announced in all capital letters. “BE A WEE-WISE WATER WARRIOR! ONLY FLUSH AFTER 4 (No. 1’s only).” In the middle of a pie chart was a plastic arrow that restroom visitors are meant to advance through numbered slices marked one through four — to track the appropriate number of uses..

“It’s raised a lot of issues with our cleaning staff,” says Jessica Fell, a hydrologist at the FWI. “We’ve given them chemicals that they can spray into the toilet bowl, which completely neutralize the smell.”

... To read more on EarthMagazine.org, click here!

Waterless Cape Town Open

Cape Town - The water crisis currently affecting Cape Town demands that we all take extra measures to ensure that Day Zero never comes.

Cape Town Open goes Waterless

The Sunshine Tour has committed itself, during this, the week of the Cape Town Open, to use less water in an effort to assist the City of Cape Town and the citizens in their endeavours to save the scarce resource.

The first measure was to move the tournament from its usual home, the Royal Cape Golf Club which has a dire shortage of water, to the King David Mowbray Golf Club where the golf course is treated with effluent water.

The other important measure taken by the Tour in this regard is to encourage golfers to use showers only on the Tuesday of the pro-am, on Friday for those who miss the cut and who are traveling, and on Sunday after the tournament.

To read more from this article on the Sport 24 Website, Click here...

What Would Your City Do If They Only Had 113 Days Left Of Water

In March of 2017, Cape Town, South Africa was in an intensely crave situation when it came to water.  The city of nearly 4 million people had only 113 days left of drinking water. 

But it gets worse. 

In a relatively short period, they were down to just 103 days left of water and then only 87 days left of water. By August 2017, there were only 61 days of water left.

It’s clear something had to be done and done very soon. City administrators had tried pleading with people and businesses to reduce water consumption with only marginal success.  So as the situation grew worse, they decided to take a totally different approach. 

What they did is turn to billboards. 

They posted electronic billboards and signs on the major roadways around Cape Town, letting everyone know on a daily basis how much drinking water was left in the reservoirs.

It had a compelling impact. It empowered people to find ways to reduce consumption on their own. Then, using social media and traditional media, people eagerly started sharing their ideas and what they had learned on ways to save water. So everyone started learning from everyone else.

Among the ideas that took hold were the following:

•    Taking 5-minute showers (and using a timer to prove it)

•    Limiting tooth brushing to once or twice today with little or no water

•    Flushing toilets no more than five times per day per family (hmm; are you sure about this?)

•    Installing waterless urinals ((Link to this blog sent you in November: Breaking News: Waterless Loos for South Africa)

•    Limit handwashing to once or twice per day (again, hmm??)

•    No landscape irrigation of any kind

•    No sipping of tap water; only drink bottled water imported into the country

Some people even suggested eliminating laundry.  They purchased only ready-to-wear/ready-to-toss clothing.  Fortunately, Cape Town has a mild climate year round so it’s possible they could get away with this.

But here is what also surfaced.

Cape Town residents started realizing they are not the only ones having water problems. In fact, it’s becoming a problem around the world.

According to the United Nations, 95 percent of the countries around the world – including South Africa – have less drinkable water today in reservoirs than they did just twenty years ago.  So this told Cape Town residents that what they are experiencing is not temporary… this is the way things are going to be.

Those electronic billboards accomplished more than city administrators ever thought possible.  Its paid off.  Water consumption has dropped considerably.

Reducing water consumption is now on everyone’s mind just about every day.  They empowered people to take action on their own – and they did.

For more information on ways to reduce water consumption, visit www.waterless.com