#SurplusWater2025 – Saving water

Print

By Gerrie Brink, managing director AquaAffection

The recent water reductions imposed on Tshwane by Rand Water have highlighted the need to reduce water usage in Tshwane and in Gauteng.

GerrieBrinkDespite the recent rains, the 10-year water prediction shows the situation to be critical, and everyone in the City, residents, businesses, commerce and industry, need to use water more efficiently.Despite the recent rains, the 10-year water prediction shows the situation to be critical, and everyone in the City, residents, businesses, commerce and industry, need to use water more efficiently.

Tshwane gets about 70% of its purified drinking water from Rand Water. They in turn get their bulk water from the so-called Integrated Vaal River System (IVRS), which draws from a number of dams including Katse, Sterkfontein and Vaal Dams. Much of the water feeding into this IVRS comes from Lesotho via a water transfer scheme. The supply from Lesotho is fixed at the moment and cannot be increased until the next phase of the Lesotho transfer scheme is completed – probably in 10 years from now. Therefore, the overall water supply from Rand Water is limited for the next 10 years.  

At the same time an increasing population (Tshwane grows by about 10 000 people per month) and growing industrial and commercial water demand from new investments will continue to put strain on the available water. In the recent past, water demand exceeded water supply by about 15%. This is a recipe for disaster unless we can better manage our available water.

A recent water management initiative under the banner #SURPLUSWATER2025 has been established to encourage better water demand management. Many residents and businesses do not have a clear picture of their water usage, and can certainly reduce this, saving crucial litres of water as well as money.

Before anyone can manage their water usage, they need to know how much they use, and what the pattern is of their usage. It is easy enough to put a logger on your meter to get this information. After a week or so a pattern will emerge, and will show up any leaks, running toilets, urinals or taps.  

If these are dealt with it can immediately reduce water usage significantly. Recently a project at a school in Johannesburg showed significant night-time usage, when there should be little or no usage at all. This usage was traced to leaking toilets, and by installing new flushing mechanisms (at under R200 per toilet) the monthly water consumption was reduced by a whopping 80%.

The installation of high-pressure components in taps, which reduce water usage significantly, without any difference being noticeable, is another way of improving water demand management.

There are many other ways of managing water, especially once the usage pattern has been determined. And, of course, once the ‘fixes’ have been put in place, it is essential that the monitoring continues to ensure new leaks or excess usage do not start up.

SurplusWater2025tm

The aim of #SURPLUSWATER2025 is to create awareness of the pending water crisis and for people and organisations to share ideas. If everyone gets on board it is possible to reduce water demand so that supply will exceed demand by 2025. Hence #SURPLUSWATER2025.

It is also a platform where water savings can be logged and the drop in demand can be seen. So, log in and participate.

Let us all use water efficiently! For further information contact Gerrie Brink Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.