Berg River Dam water release to ease West Coast drought

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The Department of Water and Sanitation will release water from the Berg River Dam in the Boland to the Misverstand Dam in the Swartland on Wednesday afternoon.

This is to ease the impact of the drought in the West Coast region.

The City of Cape Town has recently raised concerns over the water consumption spike and declining dam levels due to high temperatures and evaporation.

The Misverstand Dam in the area is at 13.26% and could run out by next Tuesday, according to assessments.

The dam supplies municipalities in the West Coast with water for domestic, industrial and agricultural use.

Minister Gugile Nkwinti explains: “In order for us to have a long term programme to deal with challenges of water, we should plan together and adopt strategy to ensure enough supply of water for agricultural and domestic use. As we speak now, there are huge challenges in the Western Cape and other areas of the country and therefore food security is under threat.”

Western Cape Local Government Minister Anton Bredell says they welcome the water release.

“For us it’s crucial to get water into the Misverstand Dam otherwise the Saldanha Bay municipality will run out of water and we cannot afford that. Also, getting water into the Misverstand Dam helps us to secure the remaining water in the Voelvlei dam that provides water to 22 other dams in the west coast. So that’s crucial. If all goes well, it’s going to be a sustainable plan. We hope we will get rain during the winter season.

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