South Africa’s water quality under threat.

Rapid urbanisation is contributing to a deterioration in South Africa’s water quality,Department of Water and Sanitation Water quality planning scientific manager Pieter Viljoen said on Wednesday.

Addressing delegates at an integrated water quality management symposium,in Centurion,Gauteng,he explained that the country’s water infrastructure was overloaded,owing to the influx of people migrating to urban areas.

“There is a major increase in the volume of waste going into wastewater treatment plants and the current infrastructure [in large metros] can’t cope with it,” Viljoen said.

He highlighted that urbanisation was a massive socioeconomic challenge that needed to be tackled,stressing that it was imperative to stimulate the economy in smaller towns so that fewer people feel the need to seek better opportunities in the large metros.

Viljoen said the amount of wastewater and raw sewage flowing into South Africa’s water resources,was a major challenge. Deteriorating municipal water treatment infrastructure was another concern.

“There is also lack of finance from local government to address this problem. Financial resources available are insufficient and do not recognise the investment required to counteract economic harm.”

A failure by municipalities to collect the required revenue negatively impact on their ability to maintain municipal water treatment infrastrucute.

A lack of alignment and coordination within and between government departments also negatively impacts on the country’s water resources.

“Water quality management is often hampered by poor coordination and conflicting approaches,” stated Viljoen.


R7bn in water is lost each year in SA

Many dams are at satisfactory levels,although North West,Limpopo and Mpumalanga still face challenges.

South Africa,a water-scarce country,racks up R7 billion in water losses annually,according to Water and Sanitation Minister Nomvula Mokonyane.

Mokonyane was addressing the Western Cape Water Indaba,held in Goudini Spa in Rawsonville yesterday.  She said the study was done by the University of Stellenbosch and commissioned by the Water Research Commission in 2012.

“It is,therefore,of vital importance for government and communities to improve our ability to maintain the existing infrastructure to prevent and repair the current leaks in order to reduce the loss,” said Mokonyane during the indaba.

At the indaba,delegates will provide inputs on the drought and advise on how to create a sustainable water future for the country.

The country’s dams are currently at 77.2% of capacity,which is better than last year’s 54%. Last year,Cabinet declared eight provinces disaster areas,the only exception being Gauteng.

Many dams are at satisfactory levels,although North West,Limpopo and Mpumalanga still face challenges.

The minister said the Western Cape,hard-hit by,was experiencing serious water problems. The province has winter rain and dry summers.

A team comprising officials from the department of water and sanitation and the national disaster management committee were working with the province to ensure that short- to medium-term solutions were fast-tracked to guarantee the water security of the province.


Eco-H2o is a water conservation company that would be able to assist you with rainwater harvesting systems, greywater reuse systems, back-up water supply systems, pool back-wash recycling systems and toilet flushing systems.   When you have our systems installed in your home not only could you reduce your water bill by up to 90%,you will also never be without water.  We are also suppliers of JoJo water tanks.

Rainwater Harvesting

Rainwater Harvesting.


We are faced with a water crisis due to the scarcity of usable water resources. In world terms,only three percent of all water on Earth is freshwater and most of this is frozen in the ice caps. In South Africa,there are no more rivers that could be dammed to store fresh water. Our existing dams are being polluted and the threat of Acid Mine Drainage will only compound the problem in Gauteng.
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How to save water without changing your lifestyle.

How to save water without changing your lifestyle.

The average household consumes approximately 240lt of water per person per day. That means that for a household with four people in it,960lt of water is used every day which equates to 350’400lt per year!

How is this usage broken down? Would you believe that only 3% of your total water consumed is used for drinking and cooking? The rest is used for the garden (35%),toilet flushing (29%),bathing/ showering (20%) and for laundry (13%). If we covert these percentages to volumes,the average home uses 122’640lt per year to water the garden,101’616lt to flush your toilet,70’080lt to keep ourselves clean and 45’552lt to keep our clothes clean! The other 10’512lt per year is used for drinking and cooking.

Eco-h2o Water Conservation look to match water quality with application. Municipal water for drinking (for now anyway but this could change),rainwater for showering,toilet flushing and laundry and lastly,grey water for garden irrigation. A combination of all of our systems can save you up to 90% on your water bills!

Broken down into each application,we look at the various ways to save water.

Toilet flushing.

An average cistern holds approximately 10lt and is emptied each time the toilet is flushed. Our Multi-Flush toilet mechanism allows you to control the amount of water used each time you flush the toilet. In some instances,clearing the pan requires as little as 1lt for men and 2lt for women. As you can see,each flush can save you 8lt which adds up very quickly. If each person flushes twice per day,your saving is 23’360lt of water per year!

Grey water reuse.

Our Greywater System collects water from baths,showers,hand basins and washing machines. No “black water” can be used i.e.:toilet water,dishwashers and kitchen sinks. If we look at the figures above,showering/bathing and laundry combined total some 115’632lt per year. This grey water is then pumped to the garden keeping it watered all year round at no extra cost. We have already established that we use approximately 122’640lt per year on keeping our gardens watered so the water needed for the garden is reduced to 7’008lt per year.

Rainwater harvesting.

If you harvest your rainwater,your water savings are even bigger as the water you harvest is used for bathing,showering,laundry and toilet flushing. Rainfall is seasonal,but for the rainy months,you could be self sufficient in terms of water supply. Rainwater is collected from your downpipes through our Rain Runner filters which remove leaves,dirt and debris that may have accumulated on your roof between rains,thus ensuring that only clean water enters your rainwater tank. Municipal water is introduced to the tank as well ensuring you a backup water supply if there is no rain or municipal water in your area.

Eco-h2o Water Conservation has 7 years’ experience in water conservation with over 2000 installations (residential and commercial) countrywide.

For a free quote contact Sarah on or visit for more information.

Acid mine drainage is still a problem

Image result for acid mine drainage images

JOHANNESBURG – Eyewitness News has learned government spent R25 million on a ‘feasibility report’ to establish a long-term solution for acid mine drainage,but two years later the report’s findings have not been implemented.

In 2012,urgent concerns were raised that millions of litres of acid mine water under Johannesburg would flood
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The price of water needs to go up

Proposed revisions to South Africa’s water pricing strategy are as broad as they are complex,but what is clear is that water will become significantly more expensive in the future.

The Department of Water and Sanitation (DWAS) has gazetted a draft of the revised water pricing strategy,which outlines a theoretical framework that would engender a fully functioning water eco-system. The 2013 document has led the discussion on how South Africa can reduce the financial burden on municipalities,which are required by law
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The “Drinkable Book”for treating water

A book with pages that can be torn out to filter drinking water has proved effective in its first field trials.

The “drinkable book” combines treated paper with printed information on how and why water should be filtered.

Its pages contain nanoparticles of silver or copper,which kill bacteria in the water as it passes through.

In trials at 25 contaminated water sources in South Africa,Ghana and Bangladesh,the paper successfully removed more than 99% of bacteria.

The resulting levels of contamination are similar to US tap water,the researchers say. Tiny amounts of silver or copper also leached into the water,but these were well below safety limits.

The results were presented at the 250th national meeting of the American Chemical Society in Boston,US.

Dr Teri Dankovich,a postdoctoral researcher at Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh,developed and tested the technology for the book over several years,working at McGill University in Canada and then at the University of Virginia.
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The new ‘water’tight plan for a leaking economy

The new plan which will be launched soon will save water,billions of rands and create thousands of jobs.

President Jacob Zuma on Tuesday said a plan to save water and billions of rands in losses,and create thousands of jobs,will be launched in Port Elizabeth at the end of the month.

The president was speaking on a range of issues from the state of the economy to job losses,as well as the electricity crisis and the new visa regulations. He gave  feedback at the presidential guesthouse on the promises he made during his State of the Nation Address in February.

Zuma said government is ready to launch its plan to save billions of rands lost through leaking taps.   “Government will train 15,000 artisans and plumbers who will fix leaking taps in their communities.”  He said government will continue with its five-point water and sanitation plan.   “Maintain and upgrade existing water and sanitation infrastructure,build new dams and develop ground water.”

The president said water is a critical resource to ensure economic development.


Zuma on Tuesday said as South Africa addresses the current energy crisis,economic growth will steadily improve.

He said once energy constraints ease,economic growth is expected to reach three percent within the next three years,adding that substantial progress has been made at Eskom to resolve the energy crisis.

Zuma also said renewable energy projects will provide an additional 6,000 megawatts in the next three years.

Eco-H2o is a water conservation company that would be able to assist you with rainwater harvesting systems, greywater reuse systems, back-up water supply systems, pool back-wash recycling systems and toilet flushing systems.   When you have our systems installed in your home not only could you reduce your water bill by up to 90%,you will also never be without water.  We are also suppliers of JoJo water tanks.

Rain on its way

Image result for pictures of rainAbove average rainfall is expected in the North West this spring,but it will be too late for some farmers affected by the drought in the province.

“If you look at the long-term seasonal forecast,we do expect above normal rain. It looks quite positive for spring –the end of August,September,October,”said Tonie Rossouw,a forecaster at the Bloemfontein office of the South African Weather Service.

There has been no rain since December,but the province had normal rainfall for summer. There has also been no rain this winter,but this was normal.

“There was a critical period at the end of January/February. There was a long period of very dry,hot conditions and heat wave conditions,”said Rossouw.
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SA’s integrated water system launches

The Department of Water Affairs has created a new online water services system,the National Integrated Water Information System (NIWIS),a data portal for water management institutions.

south africa water system south africa water system,launch

It will allow commercial water users,researchers and the general public to get updated information on the status of water and sanitation in South Africa.
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