Water reserves released into Vaal Dam as levels continue to drop

Water reserves released into Vaal Dam as levels continue to drop

The Department of Water and Sanitation has started with the long process of releasing water from the Sterkfontein Dam into the Vaal Dam - as water levels continue to drop.

Water drop faucet_wikimedia
Photo: Wikimedia

The Vaal Dam, one of the 14 dams within the Vaal River System, supplies approximately 12 million people and is sitting just above 25 percent, its lowest level ever.

The department says the decision was taken to release water from the Sterkfontein Dam, which is a reserve dam, before the Vaal Dam drops below 25 percent.

The water will be released into the Nuwejaarspruit which joins the Wilge River on the outskirts of Harrismith flowing into the Vaal Dam. The release will be done in such a way as to avoid flooding.

"We need to remember that this does not mean the drought is over. All it means is that this is part of the recovery against the drought and people must remember to use water sparingly," says departmental spokesperson Sputnik Ratau.

Meanwhile, Ekurhuleni will from this week introduce water rationing measures, because residents have only reduced consumption by 3.5 percent instead of 15 percent.  


In Johannesburg, Joburg Water's Tidimalo Chuene says stage 3 water restrictions will have to be implemented if the situation does not improve.

"40 percent of the water we supply to Johannesburg goes to outdoor use and the belief is that if we reduce on that amount, we should be able to make the necessary saving required for us to have water supply catering for everyone," she says. 

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