Water Wise Watch: July
In this issue:
Water Wise Tip of the Month from Leslie Hoy
"We can only save water one drop at a time, and one bucket or bath at a time; but we must never give up the daily fight to be #waterwise".
This month with Water Wise - Brought to you by Rand Water and Water Wise
As we approach mid-winter, it is a good time to be reminded of the Water Wise hints and tips for a happy winter garden. Remember, mulch is essential during winter. It acts as a blanket for the soil, keeps plant roots warm, and protects tender seeds and bulbs from the cold. Mulch also prevents frost from forming over the surface of the soil. Frost netting is great for young plants and those vulnerable to the cold. It can be left on during the day too. Watering should be done later in the day, once it has warmed up. Always be Water Wise!
For the first time in its history, SALI (South African Landscapers' Institute) has added a Water Wise element to each category of the annual SALI Awards of Excellence. The Awards of Excellence encourages SALI members to enter their landscaping projects for a chance to win in any of the six categories presented. This provides members with an opportunity to showcase their skills, workmanship, and professionalism to their peers in the industry, and ultimately customers. SALI members operate in property developments, business parks, golf estates, industrial parks, hotel and tourism developments, municipal parks departments, prisons, mines, and the green industry. The brand new Water Wise category allows members to actively acknowledge water conservation elements in their designs
This year, Leslie Hoy was awarded with the 2017 SALI National Judge's Discretionary Award (see image to the right). This award recognises and honours members of the landscaping community who have given a lifetime of excellence in service to the industry. Congratulations, Leslie! Read more about Leslie's contribution in the insert to the right.
Weather for June/July
The South African Weather Service - Forecasts once again show uncertainty in the direction of rainfall throughout the country, which is a common phenomenon during the winter season. However, models indicate a potential for above-normal rainfall country-wide from August to October 2017. Nonetheless, the SAWS recommends that current drought measures remain in place due to the potential negative effects the dry conditions will have in the future.
Temperature forecasts have also been inconsistent in the past few months, but do show that temperatures across the country are expected to be above-normal, especially during mid to late winter. An El Niño event is still expected to occur in the upcoming spring and summer season, although the likelihood has decreased from last month's forecasts.
Drought FAQs www.droughtsa.org.za/faq.html:
- A drought is defined as a period of below average rainfall. The severity of a drought is determined by how far below average the rainfall is, for how long the dry period occurs, and to what extent available waterreaches the groundwater.
- An agricultural drought occurs when there is not enough moisture to support average crop production and grass production.
- A hydrological drought occurs when there is reduced stream flows and water reserves in aquifers, lakes, and reservoirs fall below a statistical average.
- A meteorological drought occurs after a prolonged period of below average rainfall (usually less than 70%), creating natural shortages of available water.
- South Africa has a unique topography that creates a variability in climate in both space and time.
- South Africa also has one of the most variable river flow regimes in the world.
Current dam capacities*:
Vaal Barrage Dam:
*at time of print 22-06-2017
Did you know?
The 2030 Water Resources Group, of which the Department of Water and Sanitation is a member, has calculated that, by 2030, the demand for water in South Africa will exceed supply by 17%.
Ref: Aquazania (2017)
Water in the News
Climate change will worsen flooding in SA's coastal cities:
"In the next 13 years, coastal cities will face "catastrophic" floods twice as often as they do now because of rising sea levels, according to new research. Previous research has shown the effects of rising sea levels on coastlines..."
5 000 meter se nette en honderde dooie vis uit Vaaldam getrek:
"Onwettige visvang is egter nie 'n vreemde verskynsel nie en dit is nie die eerste keer wat meters en meters nette uit die Vaaldam of Vaalrivier getrek is nie. Op die oog af is die nette nie opsigtelik nie."
CT dam levels rise by 4%, City not out of the woods yet:
"The City issued an appeal to industry to assist in coming up with solutions to augment the City's potable water supply, with dam levels now at 23.1%. Dam levels have increased by less than 4%..."
Energy minister: decision on SA's nuclear future to be taken in 3 months:
"A new nuclear build programme, which is set to provide 9,600 megawatts of power by 2030 was halted by the Constitutional Court earlier this year. It found certain aspects of the proposed project..."
Days to Remember
World Population Day
World Desertification Day
Nelson Mandela International Day