The Department of Water and Sanitation (DWS) issued a gazette on 12 August 2016 (Vaal River water curtailment) to limit the water urban use by 15% and irrigation use by 20%. The restriction applicable to Rand Water is for a 15% curtailment on urban use.
Rand Water and other Water Services Authorities have been directed to implement measures to monitor their respective compliance to the gazetted restrictions. Failure to comply will result in DWS having to institute administrative, civil and criminal enforcement processes. This action is mainly due to a projected water scarcity by July 2018, should the current consumption patterns continue.
The Integrated Vaal River System (IVRS) consists of the Upper, Middle and Lower Vaal Water Management Areas (WMA) as well as transfer schemes from other water management areas such as the Thukela, Usutu and Inkomati WMA’s. The total storage capacity of all the dams in the IVRS is 11.26 km³. The current total demand on the VRS is 3.07 km³ per annum, which is 2.7% more than the current system yield of 2.99 km³ per annum.
Should these high demand patterns continue without reduction, and if the drought persists because of a below-normal rainfall cycle in next two years, then the IVRS dams will be empty by July 2018.
Please click here to read the gazette.