The City has also raised water tariffs, especially for residents who continue to use large amounts of water, often for luxurious, non-essential uses. Research has also supported the use of pricing policy as a tool for efficient water allocation. In comparing flat rate pricing where marginal cost of consumption equals to zero to volumetric pricing of domestic water utilities, Hanke and Bolard show that a shift from the former to the latter was effective at achieving a lasting decline in domestic water usage.
Water tariffs are particularly effective at reducing water demand for non-essential uses as such demand is often price-elastic , and will fall more than proportionately in response to a price hike. Many desperate locals, armed with plastic containers, can also be seen collecting water from mountain streams and natural springs around the city. This has led to long lines and even fights between citizens, and the City has also stepped up security at popular locations.
More innovative solutions include the installation of water storage tanks that will collect rainwater, and the drilling of private boreholes. They can also meet their most price inelastic needs with these alternative supplies of water, and more price elastic needs will make up a larger percentage of total municipal water demand.
This has potentially deleterious long-run consequences for water security and the municipal water supply system: first, it hampers the ability of the city to use water pricing and tariff policy to regulate use of the commons and two, given the importance of cross-subsidization of low-volume users by high-volume users in a progressive tiered-water tariff system, it raises financial sustainability concerns for a water system that is already buckling under its fiscal weight. This water crisis has spurred research into, and the adoption of, more water-efficient methods of farming.
Farmers have increasingly adopted agricultural precision technology to gain better insight into water use on their farm. Other scientists are studying metabolism of plants to learn how they use less water during photosynthesis, which enables them to survive during long periods of severe drought.
Cape Town’s ‘Day Zero’ water crisis, one year later | Grist
The water crisis has seen no lack of political controversies and misinformation, making it challenging to discern the true extent of the crisis, and to accurately appraise efforts at addressing the crisis. Some have even questioned the existence of a water crisis, and downplayed "Day Zero" as a scare tactic. The Cape Town water crisis have laid bare the water distributional inequalities in the city.
Although one fifth of Cape Town's population lives in informal settlements also known as townships , only 3.
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Observers have criticized the government's neglect of such water security and equity problems in the informal settlements prior to the Cape Town water crisis. Water restrictions were imposed on both agricultural and urban use of municipal water. On average, the agriculture sector in the Western Cape has had to cut its water use by 60 per cent since Water restrictions varied from 50 per cent in the Breede Valley, 60 per cent in the Berg River and Riviersonderend region and 87 per cent in the Lower Olifants River Valley.
Anton Rabe, CEO of Hortgro, which represents deciduous fruit growers in Cape Town, argued that the cut of 60 per cent to agriculture, compared with 45 per cent to the city, was unfair. Helen Zille , Premier of the Western Cape, drew attention for some of her comments on the water crisis. In September , she revealed that she only showered once every three days, and that she regards "oily hair in a drought to be as much of a status symbol as a dusty car. This ill-timed internal conflict within the DA has shaken public trust in the leadership of the DA in managing the water crisis, with some accusing the DA of scapegoating Mayor Lille to retain electorate confidence ahead of the national elections.
This is so as Israel is a global leader in water desalination technology, and would be a potential partner in helping Cape Town set up her desalination plants. Relations between post-Apartheid South Africa and Israel have historically been rocky, with South Africa accusing Israel of apartheid in handling the Israel-Palestine conflict. This has hampered effective collaboration in water management.
For instance, a Johannesburg conference focusing on the water crisis was canceled due to news that the Israeli ambassador to South Africa at the time would be attending. From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.
Water crisis in South Africa. USA Today. The Atlantic. Retrieved 22 February The Globe and Mail. City of Cape Town. Cape Town etc. Cape Messenger. Yale Environment Retrieved 19 July Washington Post. Free basic water—a sustainable instrument for a sustainable future in South Africa. Environment and Urbanization , 20 1 , Worldwide Fund for Nature. Archived from the original on 27 March Cape Town: Ground Up.
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Can you use sea water to flush? Retrieved 30 March Retrieved 19 January ABC News. Retrieved 16 February Retrieved 3 February Environmental Research Letters. World Population Review. Water demand and population growth. Department of Water Affairs and Forestry. Times Live. January South African Water Caucus. The Conversation.
South African Breweries eyes the growing zero and low-alcohol beers market
Retrieved 1 December Retrieved 7 February Cape Town Tourism. Moment Mag. The South African. Public Health. December Retrieved 27 March Day Zero. One city's response to a record-breaking drought PDF.
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The Independent. Business Tech. Retrieved 8 February The tragedy of the commons. National Geographic. Water requirements or water demands?.
Business Insider. SABC News. The Hill. Africa Check. Access to water for the urban poor in Cape Town: where equity meets cost recovery. Urban Studies , 40 8 , Human Rights Watch.
Mail and Guardian. Daily Maverick. Core to every analysis of these drought episodes, and extreme weather events in general, is the phenomenon of a change in Southern African climate on the back of global climate change. The second impact of the new normal is social.
Climate change events are directly reducing livelihood opportunities, with citizens eking out a living from a rapidly degrading environment in the short-term. In addition, indirect repercussions, such as challenges of social upheaval in the medium to long-term are also becoming evident.
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