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Five stages for implementation of water restrictions

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During the periods of restriction, residents will also be paying more for increased water usage

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THERE is enough water in storage for the Northern Cape to sustain the Province through the dry winter season.

According to the weekly state of reservoirs report of the Department of Water and Sanitation, the current water in storage for the Northern Cape is 74.3%.

The department, however, warned consumers to use water sparingly, stating that the country may run dry if the precious resource is used negligently.

“This situation could also force municipalities to implement water restrictions,” spokesperson for the department, Sputnik Ratau, said yesterday.

Spitskop Storage Weir on the Harts River is at 68.3%, VaalHarts Storage Weir 65%, Douglas Storage Weir is at 108.3%, Boegoeberg Dam, which is supplied by the Orange River, was at 93.5% last week and the Karee Dam on the Karee River is at 17.7%.

If water restrictions are implemented in Kimberley, city residents could find themselves facing exorbitant costs for water following the approval of water tariffs during periods of restrictions.

According to the tariffs set out in the 2019/20 budget there will be a total of five stages for water restrictions.

Stage one is aimed at intending to enforce “sensible use of water and to prevent inefficient water use practices”. During this stage, non-essential water use will be reduced by 20%.

“These restrictions are meant to minimise unnecessary water consumption during peak daily demand periods, but to have little impact on amenity of community and residential assets.”

Stage two restrictions are designed to reduce non-essential water use by 40% of average consumption. Non-essential residential and commercial use is limited to alternative days, and watering of lawns and filling of swimming pools is banned.

Stage three will see the reduction of non-essential use by 70% of average consumption. Watering of residential, commercial and public gardens is limited to levels intended to prevent long-term vegetation damage. Normal watering of lawns is banned.

Stage four only allows the consumption of water for essential public health purposes. All non-essential uses are banned.

During stage five, water restrictions are imposed to effect emergency water conservation (emergency management). No non-essential water use is permitted at any time during the restriction. Only essential domestic, industrial and commercial use may be permitted under strict monitoring.

During the periods of restriction, residents will also be paying more for increased water usage.

During level five emergency, for example, water usage above 60Kl will be charged at the premium rate of R68.11 per Kl. By comparison 0-6Kl of water will be R6.93 per Kl.

At level 5, 7-20Kl of water will cost R53.55, 21-40Kl will be R63.74.

Builders will be charged R75.39 per Kl of water, while industries will be charge R65.56.