8 September 2020
Dams across the province have seen a substantial increase thanks to a good winter rainfall season, an official at the Department of Water and Sanitation (DWS) confirmed.
DWS spokesperson Malusi Rayi said as a result, water storage in many parts of the Western Cape had improved significantly.
The main storage dams of the Western Cape Water Supply System (WCWSS) are the Theewaterskloof, Voëlvlei and Berg River dams (operated by the DWS), and the Wemmershoek, Upper and Lower Steenbras dams.
“The combined dam storage for the WCWSS shows the system is no longer under severe stress and the reserve storage that was gradually depleted over the last four years has been recovered. The combined storage is roughly over 90% as of August 31,” said Rayi.
“This is a remarkable turnaround of the situation following the lower-than-normal rainfall during the 2016-2018 rainy seasons.
“Thanks to rains and a combination of effective management of available resources, application of drought tariffs for water consumption, extensive communication campaigns, and partnerships with communities, business and agriculture, a potential crisis was averted,” said Rayi.
Local Government MEC Anton Bredell said the latest average dam level in the Western Cape was 75.3%, nearly 10 percentage points better than last year at this time and the highest level seen in years.
“However, there are still some parts of the province, largely within the agricultural areas of the Karoo regions, that have yet to receive the rain they need,” said Bredell.
“It was wonderful to see how a few of the Clanwilliam Dam sluices were opened,” he added.
Source: Independent Online