Amid the ongoing drought in the Western Cape, the Department of Water and Sanitation (DWS) is assessing critical water use licence applications submitted by the City of Cape Town.
These applications are being given priority and include three applications for the abstraction of water for domestic and industrial use and nine for the construction of roads and houses in wetland areas within the city.
The DWS expects the three licence applications for the abstraction of water for domestic and industrial purposes to be finalised by the end of September. These licences are for the Berg Water projects, the Theewaterskloof dam and future abstractions from springs.
The remaining licences are being assessed and will be finalised in 2017 and 2018 respectively.
Meanwhile, the DWS is also processing an abstraction water use licence application from the West Coast district municipality for the Swartland and Misverstand schemes, with the licences expected to be finalised by the end of September.
Water and Sanitation Minister Nomvula Mokonyane has urged Western Cape Premier Helen Zille and local authorities in the Western Cape to cooperate with the DWS to mitigate against any delays that may arise in the finalisation of these licences, as they are critical in the current context for water security.
Such cooperation entails the submission of information on water demand projections and plans for water use efficiency.