On Thursday, the City of Cape Town drilled its first test borehole into the Cape Flats aquifer.
During a site visit in Mitchells Plain, Mayor Patricia De Lille said:
“This is the first in the history of the City of Cape Town that we’re going to drill for water and extract that water that’s been there for millions of years.”
Sounds a little sad, doesn’t it? Indeed, but desperate times call for desperate measures.
In case you have had blinkers on this whole entire time (are you a part of the problem?), the event came as a result of the Cape’s “day zero” fast approaching.
As it stands, we have enough water to last us until April 22 of this year (and those drought charges won’t stop that), and the drilling of the “earth’s natural underground reservoirs” will hopefully provide an extra 80 million litres of water a day, reports New24:
The team plans to drill at several pre-identified sites to find the highest yielding points as quickly as possible.
The first drill site was based at the waste water treatment plant in Mitchells Plain. The team laid out piles of different coloured wet soil which had been extracted, to demonstrate the depths drilled so far.
In blazing heat, blue PVC pipes were joined to be sunk into the hole to start bringing water to the surface.
The City will drill in Strandfontein, Philippi, Wesbank, Bishop Lavis and Khayelitsha to look for the best abstraction points.
A quick video from on-site yesterday:
So what will happen if the City runs dry? Eish, it’s not pretty:
Should the city’s taps run dry, residents will be limited to 25 litres of water per day, collected in a queue with a container and monitored by police and possibly the military. The current limit is 87 litres per day.
The first planned works will be in Paarden Eiland, in the area bounded by the Marine Drive Service Road to the north, Duncan and Lower Church roads to the west, Paarden Eiland Road to the east and FW De Klerk Boulevard (N1 freeway) to the south.
The site, set up back in November, looks a little something like this.
These pictures via Orbit Solar on Facebook:
Frightening, I say.
According to Times LIVE:
When the taps are turned off, there will be 200 collection points spread out across Cape Town. They will operate 24/7 and allow each person to collect 25 litres of water per day. This will be used for washing, cooking and personal hygiene.
Things are about to get ugly – let’s just hope not this ugly.
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