DA's Maimane urges Capetonians to keep water consumption low

The municipality had warned the city needed to beat the 450 million litre daily target to avoid Day Zero.

Western Cape Premier Helen Zille and DA leader Mmusi Maimane make the Day Zero announcement on 7 March 2018. Picture: Bertram Malgas/EWN

CAPE TOWN – Day Zero will be avoided if current water consumption levels are maintained in Cape Town.

That's the word from Democratic Alliance (DA) leader Mmusi Maimane who on Wednesday briefed the media on the latest forecasts, alongside Premier Helen Zille and deputy Mayor Ian Nielson.

Cape Town's average consumption is now less than 520 million litres per day.

The municipality had warned that the city needed to beat the 450 million litre daily target to avoid Day Zero.

Maimane is adamant that Day Zero will not be ushered in this year if residents keep water consumption low and there is adequate winter rainfall.

“Every week, the water consumption steadily declined and we were able to push Day Zero by days and then weeks and then months.”

Deputy Mayor Ian Nielson explains why previous Day Zero forecasts were much earlier.

“We’ve always used a fairly conservative basis for that projection to Day Zero because we had to ensure that we'd be ready in time, so that's the basis. Essentially, what we did was to project the current fall in the dam levels.”

City officials say the installation of water management devices to rein in excessive water users will still go ahead.

WATCH: Mmusi Maimane: Day Zero might not happen in 2018

At the same time, the pace at which Cape Town's dam levels are dropping has slowed down.

Water augmentation projects will also see hundreds of millions of litres of water being pumped into our pipes in the coming months.

The City of Cape Town's Xanthea Limberg has, however, emphasises level 6B water restrictions remain in place.

“Week on week our dam levels have only declined by only 0.4% and this is largely because consumption has remained low between 510 and 520 million litres of water.”