Drought water tariff: To pay or not to pay….?

Drought water tariff: To pay or not to pay . . . . . . .?

A question is being asked – “Why should Kleinemonde residents have to pay an increased drought water tariff as we apparently do not have a water problem?”.

 – But is this true? How much water do we really have?

Going back in history, during 2008 the level of Wellington dam, which at that stage, was our main source of water, dropped to such a low level that Ndlambe Council imposed strict water restrictions in Kleinemonde.

This prompted the committee to actively investigate an additional water source for Kleinemonde resulting in an agreement signed in 2011 for water to be extracted from a high yielding borehole on Frik van Rooyen’s farm.

The present situation:

  • Wellington dam approximately 80 % full – but remember the level in 2008 when water restrictions had to be imposed!!
  • Wellington dam/Water treatment works (WTW)

     Problems:

  • The Telemetry system not operational – it can be operated manually with a yield of only approximately 2 litre/sec. – insufficient to supply Kleinemonde.
  • When water from the WTW is used, due to reverse flowing of water in the main pipeline between the Island and the reservoir, dirty water is experienced by residents on the Island.
  •  Due to the dirty water problem, this source is only used when absolutely necessary to top-up the reservoir.

To resolve the dirty water problem will require a second pipeline from the reservoir to the Island for which there is presently no money available.

  • Boreholes – Presently our main source is delivering enough to cope with the present demand.

How much water do we have? Not knowing how long the drought is going to last – how much water do we have? The answer is we do not know!

With Wellington dam – not our main source – you can see the level but what happens underground in our boreholes is unknown and we have no control over how long it will last.

With the uncertainty of the sustainability of our own water supply, it is essential that we, as a community, exercise stringent controls of our municipal water usage.

Therefore to conserve water by means of:

  • Water restrictions; and
  • Imposing drought water tariffs;

 to protect our limited and dwindling water resources to prevent a “Day-zero-situation” in Kleinemonde is in our own interest.

Rather save now while there is still something to save than wait for a “Day-zero- situation” when there is nothing left to save!!

The drought tariff

It is our understanding that this tariff will be imposed as from January and will therefore be reflected on your February account, but will have clarity on this next week.

All ratepayers in Ndlambe are on one data base – there is no separate data base for e.g. Kleinemonde, Cannon Rocks, Boknes to allow a different tariff to be used for different areas.

Incidentally, Cannon Rocks and Boknes are in even a better situation regarding water than Kleinemonde with a secure source – the sea – feeding a desalination plant.

Thank you for your understanding.

Issued by the Kleinemonde Residents & Ratepayers Association