Drought South Africa

An Update on the Drought affecting Tourism in the Western Cape, South Africa

by Shannon De Kock September 18, 2018

The winter months have brought with it some much-needed rain but the drought is still a feature for Capetonians. Locals have been urged to continue saving during the drought before the long summer hits.

Capetonians have a reason to be proud - Cape Town is the first major city in the world to reduce its water consumption by 50% within a year. This adjustment combined with the generous rainfall in March has provided some short relief as water restrictions will be reduced on October 1st.

The City Deputy Mayor Ian Neilson announced that the water restrictions will be reduced from level 6B to Level 5 next month.

"The enormously positive response from Capetonians when called upon to reduce water usage, as well as advanced pressure and water management programmes by the City, saved the say and Cape Town avoided the worst-case scenario."

Some believe the easing of water restrictions will restore investor confidence in Cape Town. This increased confidence will also revive the tourism sector.

Janine Myburgh, president of the Cape Chamber of Commerce and Industry, said that in order to boost tourism and the film industry, the message needs to be sent out globally that the City has the water situation under control.

"Unfortunately, the drought and the Day Zero story made people look elsewhere for holiday destinations and filming locations. They may have liked the alternatives so we will have to fight hard to get the business back," Myburgh said.

Since the rains, many suburbs' water usage is up by 20% despite dam levels still at a concerning level as this graph by data consultancy Eighty20 clearly shows. 

Water usage Western Cape Graph

According to Eighty20 water tracker, water usage in the city is still above 17% of what it should be.

One indicator that the worst is not over is Beaufort West is completely out of an accessible water supply with only 1% drinking water available, it is receiving donations from good Samaritans from all over the Western Cape.

The threat of Day Zero is now over but water-saving measures are still much needed as this graph shows.

Water usage Western Cape Graph

Although dam levels are up 65% from last year, this graph from the city shows a steady decline in rainfall in the Western Cape which could result in a dire situation when the long summer comes.

Nevertheless, residents are in good spirits as is detected by the positive sentiment on social media.

Social media post water shedding group

Social media post water shedding group



Shannon De Kock
Shannon De Kock


Leave a comment

Comments will be approved before showing up.

Also in Blog

Bronze Whaler Shark feeding on a sardine bait ball
My Sardine Run experience

by Petrus Jacobus van der Walt February 24, 2022

Summary of the sardine run,

This the biggest of animal migrations in the world. The sardine run, is totally wild unpredictable event, that when it all comes together, as it does for three months annually, the sardine run is the most spectacular wildlife spectacle on the planet; dolphins, seals and whales whip the ocean surface into whitecaps, thousands of birds diving, whales lunge feeding through shoals scattering the fish. It is a twilight zone where time stands still and becomes meaningless, as you witness this amazing play of life and death unfolding.

If you are looking for a real African experience and adventure diving at its best, you’re unlikely to be disappointed!

Read More

Cape Town Accommodation - Vineyard Hotel
Cape Town Accommodation - Vineyard Hotel

by Alan Maguire July 21, 2021

The hotel is situated in the southern suburbs of Cape Town and is recognised for its beautiful setting and relaxing atmosphere. It is also a popular “afternoon tea” spot with locals who come to walk the gardens and enjoy the tranquility.

Read More

A big five safari on the Garden Route
A big five safari on the Garden Route

by Janine Avery July 19, 2021

Read More