Our efforts to mitigate the impacts of the current drought in Cape Town will receive a boost, with the addition of R20,8 million towards the City of Cape Town’s emergency disaster relief.
The City has been informed by the National Disaster Management Centre in the Department of Cooperative Governance that an amount of R20,8 million will be transferred to the City of Cape Town for emergency disaster relief.
We are extremely grateful to the Department for this contribution and thank them for coming on board to assist us with this very important task to supplement our water supplies.
In a letter sent to the City from the National Department, it stated that the purpose of the funds is solely to provide emergency relief for drilling of boreholes and the installation of pumps and pipelines due to drought conditions.
In March, I declared Cape Town a local disaster area to prepare for all eventualities and invoke emergency procurement procedures required to expedite the emergency.
The incoming grant from the disaster management centre will go a long way towards the implementation of the programmes that are in place as part our Water Resilience Strategy.
The City plans to utilise the funds for responding to the immediate needs of the drought disaster that has occurred and to alleviate the immediate consequences.
We welcome this news from the National Department and will ensure that the funding, once received, is used to provide emergency relief in line with the conditions of the grant.
Last week, together with the City’s Chief Resilience Officer, we unveiled the City’s clear plans to augment the system by up to 500 million litres of water a day over the coming months using groundwater extraction, desalination, and water reuse.
The projects will cost the City approximately R2 billion in capital funding and R1,3 billion in operating costs. In July, the City has raised R1 billion in our Green Bond and we will also be drawing from this source to fund our water augmentation projects.
A number of tenders will be advertised in the coming weeks to bring a range schemes online which will ensure water supply and avoid acute water shortages.
The City’s Water Resilience Plan has been developed based on the New Normal scenario where we no longer bank only on rain water for our drinking water supplies, but look at a range of technologies to augment our supply of drinking water in order to build greater water security.