Dam levels are declining – warns Department of Water and Sanitation
The water levels in the country’s dams at different provinces are continuing to dwindle week-on-week amidst this dry winter season. This was shown in a weekly report on the state of reservoirs in the country issued by the Department of Water and Sanitation this week.
The volume of water stored in the country’s reservoirs has declined from last week’s 83.3% to 82.8% this week.
According to the Departmental Spokesperson, Mr Sputnik Ratau, Western Cape and the Northern Cape Provinces have seen a considerable increase in their water levels this week, while other provinces have experienced marginal decline. This increase of water levels in Western Cape is attributed to the recent good rains in the province.
Northern Cape dams have also improved remarkably with 91.0% this week, compared to last week’s 87.2%. Gauteng province’s water levels have remained stable, with a high of 97.1% this week from 97.2%.
“The past rainfalls in in the Western Cape have boosted the provincial water storage and are now at 82.4% this week, an improvement from last week’s 79.4%. It is also a great improvement from last year’s water levels which stood at 65.3% during this time”, said Mr Ratau.
“Cape Town Water Supply System with dams supplying the City of Cape Town and surrounding areas, has also improved moving up to 95.7% this week from last week’s 93.2%”, he further explained.
Ratau has however appealed to water users in Western Cape to continue to conserve water as much as they can to ensure water security in the province, despite these satisfying water levels in the province.
North West water storage levels have remained unchanged with 80,2% this week. The province’s dam levels were at 69.6% last year at this time. The three main dams in the province are at hovering over their full capacity this week. Klipvoor and Bospoort Dams are sitting at 100.7% and 100.0% respectively, whereas Buffelspoort Dams has slightly dropped from 100.0% to 99,9% this week.
Mpumalanga dam levels have decreased from last week’s 84.1% to 83.6% this week. Westoe Dam in Usutu river has decreased from last week’s 70.8% to 69.5% this week. The province’s Nooitgedacht is still at its highest level with 94.9% this week, compared to last week’s 94.8%. Vygeboom Dam, is also at its highest levels at 98.0%, a slight decline from last week’s 99.0%. Kwena Dam has dropped slightly from the 100.0% full capacity to 99.8%. This is however, a great improvement when it stood at 57.3% last year at this time. Longmere Dam has also dropped from 93.9% to 90.3% this week.
Water levels in Limpopo have stabilised this week, although they continue to go on a downward spiral on a weekly basis. They have recorded 84.1% this week compared to last week’s 84.7%. Flag Boshielo Dam has dropped from last week’s 89.8% to 88.8% this week. In Mopani Region, a critically low Middel-Letaba Dam continued to drop to 8.8% compared to last week’s 9.0%. Tzaneen dam has decreased to 97.5% this week from last week’s 98.9%. The biggest dam in Limpopo, De Hoop is at 97.6% this week, a minimal decreased from 97.9% recorded last week.
The drought stricken Eastern Cape water storage levels are at a stable 50.5% this week, albeit they are continuously going down week-on-week. The Algoa Water Supply System with dams supplying the Nelson Mandela Bay Metropolitan is at a very low 10.1% this week. The Department of Water and Sanitation continues to bring a relief of fresh water supply at Nelson Mandela Bay, which is heavily affected by water shortage. The Department has made interventions with delivery of water tanks and water tankers in the area.
Free State dam levels have dropped from last week’s 95.5% to 94.8% this week. Fika Patso Dam, which supplies the residents of Phuthaditjhaba in QwaQwa, has dropped from last week’s 84.6% to 83.3% this week. This is however a great improvement from last year’s 40.5% at this time. Free State’s biggest dam, Gariep, has also dropped from last week’s 92.0% to 90.5% this week.
In KwaZulu-Natal, the provincial storage capacity has decreased from last week’s 71.4% to 70.4% this week. One of the province’s largest, Albert Falls Dam, which supplied water to the eThekwini Metro and surrounds has decreased from 53.3% to 52.9%. During a similar period last year, it stood at 39.8%.
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