One of the world’s favorite tourism destinations, South Africa’s iconic city of Cape Town, has less than a 100 days of water supply left if a drought is not relieved soon.
The city’s mayor, Patricia de Lille, has again urged Capetonians to conserve water in order to avoid “day zero,” now forecast for April 21.
If we continue to use more than 500 million litres of water per day we will reach Day Zero on 22 April 2018. We must avoid Day Zero and saving water is the only way we can do this.
— Patricia de Lille (@PatriciaDeLille) January 11, 2018
Capetonians are being urged to limit use of water to 87 liters (about 23 gallons) per person, per day as their water crisis worsens. The city’s population has doubled in 20 years therefore they haven’t been able to keep up water supply.
The popular tourist destination has been in extreme drought for three years and it is feared that the South African city’s water supply will dry up by April 22nd. They are referring to this as “Day Zero.”
The city’s government has implemented an “online water consumption map” which allows residents to keep tabs on how well or how poorly their neighbors are conserving water. It’s received some backlash, but city officials believe overall that this is the best way for Cape Town to understand the severity of the issue while saving as much as they can.
“The potential water-saving benefit for all of Cape Town of making water consumption indicators publicly available outweighs any privacy issues at this stage of the crisis‚” mayoral spokeswoman Zara Nicholson said.
The water levels of Cape Town’s dams, which are mostly sourced from rainfall, have dipped below 30% with only 19.7% of that considered usable. When they drop to 13.5% or lower, water supply will be shut off from everyone except hospitals and other essential services.