South Africa’s Looming Day Zero

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Save water, to save the future

South Africa is a water-scarce country. You may think differently when the rain is falling in your city, but we remain one of the world’s water-stressed countries.

Water scarce country

South Africa is, by virtue of its location and climate, categorised as a water-scarce country. Recent headlines where flooding in Gauteng, and in parts of KwaZulu-Natal, took place may have had you thinking otherwise, but statistically speaking, South Africa needs all the water it can get. Even moreso, we need to save as much water as we possibly can in South Africa, every day – rain or shine. In terms of total actual renewable water resources, per person, per year, South Africa uses more water than it can rely upon in the future. Considered another way, the average global rainfall for most regions of the world comes in at 985 millilitres per year. In South Africa, our average annual rainfall is just 492 millilitres per year.

Frightening statistics

Those are some frightening numbers when you consider them up close, but the true terror lies in knowing that we are not, as a country, doing enough to use our precious resource responsibly, and save water however and wherever we can. While many of our urban regions across the country have indeed experienced flooding this year, many of the catchment areas for our all-important dams and rivers have not.

Looming day zero

We seem to have grown accustomed to the idea of a looming Day Zero during the recent Western Cape drought, but once the province had somewhat partially recovered from the drought, our attention moved on from saving water. The idea that Day Zero could be put off to a later date had somehow entrenched itself into our thinking, which led to many people simply skipping their water-saving ways, the moment water restrictions were lifted. But the lesson needed to continue across the country, for several other regions of the country are now experiencing severe drought conditions. At the time of writing, these were some of the areas in South Africa that are experiencing drought conditions:

  • Along the KwaZulu-Natal South Coast, several areas are precariously close to their own Day Zero.
  • In Gauteng, water restrictions have been implemented across several areas.
  • In the Eastern Cape, drought conditions have reached a terrifying point. Dams have dried up, boreholes have run dry, and the provincial government has declared the province a disaster area.

Climate change

Drought conditions have always been part and parcel of South African life, however, the current – and prolonged – water crisis is amplified by the effects of climate change. As we look towards finding solutions for staving off the effects of climate change, every person can play their part in saving water, to save the future.

Join us as we work with communities, municipalities, businesses, and people like you, to save water and save our future. Get in touch with our SBS Tanks team and we’ll help you find a water storage solution that works for your needs.