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Cape Town Water Drought

The Western Cape has been experiencing a drought for some years now. A rare weather occurrence (El Nino) has caused less rain than normal to fall over the last 3 winters. As a consequence, the City of Cape Town, all homes and businesses have been putting water saving measures in place for some time now to reduce water consumption considerably.

The international press is currently reporting about "Day Zero" in Cape Town. The City of Cape Town has identified a date (middle of April 2018) by which the dam levels will have dropped to an extent that the quality of council water (the water that comes from the tap) will only be fit to be used as grey water (for toilets, etc.). The current date is based on the assumption that water usage cannot be further reduced and no further rainfall occurs.

We are currently hopeful that Day Zero will not occur. However, if it does, the City of Cape Town is well prepared and all homes will be supplied with drinking water from distribution points.

Tourists to Cape Town in general and students and volunteers at Good Hope Studies will only be minimally affected by this, even if Day Zero occurs. We have water tanks on site for water that can be bought from further away as well as an access point to ground water which gives us an independent water supply.

This is what our clients can expect during their stay

  • Showers restricted to 2 minutes
  • Wise use of water (i.e. close tap while soaping, brushing teeth, etc.)

What we are doing

We have taken the water drought very seriously and put a number of measures in place not only to minimise the impact for our clients but also to use this precious resource in a wise and responsible manner.

This is what we have done and continue doing to save water:

  • Removed all alien vegetation in our gardens
  • Replanted with water wise plants
  • Mixed water retention granules in the soil so plants need watering less often
  • Covered all flower beds with mulch to keep the soil moist
  • Bought in water from a registered water source to help look after the gardens
  • Placed pool covers on all our pools
  • Checked for leaks through an external company
  • Installed aerators in the taps
  • Restricted our toilets to the half-flush button
  • Ceased use of all baths at all our accommodation
  • Publicized water-saving ideas with posters on all noticeboards
  • Replaced sections of our paving with permeable grass pavers to ensure what little rain we get does go back into the ground
  • Installed a borehole to help water the gardens and assist alleviate the use of council water
  • Washing linen once a week
  • Giving instructions to all our students and volunteers on how to save water
  • Delivering lessons where teachers explore the severity of the drought with students as well as ideas for saving water
  • No refilling of the swimming pools