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Residents urged to remain water-wise

With the water restrictions and tariffs lowered to Level 3 as of 1 December, residents will have to keep water use under 6000 litres per month in their households, to see a notable reduction in their water accounts.

Civic activist Sandra Dickson of action group Dear Cape Town explains: “Should you use more than the restricted 6000 litres, up to the 12.6Kl (Level 5 restriction) your account will remain the same or even a little bit more,” she says, having done the calculations.

“So the bottom line is, stay under 6000 litres to save money,” she says.

Cape Town mayor Dan Plato last week announced that water restrictions will be lowered from Level 5 to Level 3 recovery restrictions.

According to a media statement from the City, the tariff decrease includes increasing the daily usage from 70 litres per person to day to 105 litres per person per day; and on Level 3 tariffs a resident that uses less than 6000 litres per month (step 1) can expect to pay 35.5% less.

Also the 40% restriction on water usage applicable to businesses has been removed, but the sector is still strongly encouraged to continue saving water.

Plato said the decision to lower restrictions came after a meeting between the National Department of Water and Sanitation and the City, other municipalities in the Western Cape and the agricultural sector over the water assessment for the year ahead.

Due to the extreme economic hardship caused by the drought, the agricultural sector will only reduce water usage by 10% as it too enters a period of recovery.

“The City fully supports this move as the agricultural sector also supported the City as an urban water user during the height of the drought,” said Plato in the statement.

Plato thanked all the residents and visitors to Cape Town who played a part in helping the City get through the drought.

“While the drought is not yet over, we have seen that there is room to bring some relief to our residents. I know it has been tough and I hope that this reduction in tariffs will bring some comfort over the festive season. We will still need to be water-wise though, as we do not know what the next rainy season holds,” he said.

“We are no longer in a period of extreme scarcity, but it does not mean that we should forego some of the great water-wise ways that we have made a part of our daily lives – and for which we have become world famous. We are situated in a water-scarce region and the water-wise efforts and ways to diversify and augment our water supply should and will continue.”

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