The George municipality this week appealed to all local businesses to make every effort to save water in all aspects of business processes.
George municipal manager Trevor Botha said there were many big and small ways in which businesses could assist in the overall reduction of water use. “We make a special appeal to landlords, shopping centre management and petrol stations to work towards water-reducing solutions for their buildings and tenants who may need the cooperation of landlords to implement measures such as rainwater tanks.
“Saving water is in everybody’s interest. Rather have all businesses operate with as many water conservation mechanisms as possible in place, than businesses having to close because there is no longer water for them to operate with,” said Mr Botha.
He said that, irrespective of dam levels, citizens of George and the Garden Route should consider water conservation a permanent, environmental reality of an expanding region. “Our city and region is growing, and we need to consider the bigger picture. If we all want to make a living here, we must all work towards water security.
“Businesses can also help by putting up signage in their offices, asking staff and customers to help conserve water, and raise general awareness.”
Emergency tariffs and tougher water restrictions came into effect on 2 August as the town’s main water supply, the Garden Route Dam, dropped to below45%. The latest dam level reading, published on 8 August 2017, was 43.95%.
The new Section 2C restrictions require businesses to reduce overall consumption by 15% based on the average use over the previous six months - including commercial car washes and other businesses dependent on municipal water. Large industries must reduce consumption by 10% of their average use over the previous six months. Businesses and industries that fail to reduce sufficiently may be fined. “We encourage especially water-dependent businesses to investigate alternative water sources or water-saving mechanisms and equipment, which will ultimately be a long-term business and lifestyle investment.”
Mr Botha said the municipality made recycled sewerage water available for construction purposes, free of charge, at the Gwaing Wastewater Treatment Plant - provided the users signed an indemnity form and brought their own equipment to pump the water. “The Gwaing plant produces five to six megalitres of reclaimed water per day, of which about two megalitres per day is available to users,” he said. Reclaimed water can be collected during office hours from the plant premises on the R102 (airport road).
Emergency tariffs have the following implications for businesses:
|WATER USE PER MONTH||BUSINESS NORMAL RATES 2017/18||BUSINESS RATES WHEN SECTION 2C IS IN PLACE|
|0-6 kilolitres||R13,74 per kilolitre||R13,74 per kilolitre|
|6-12 kilolitres||R13,74 per kilolitre||R13,74 per kilolitre|
|12-20 kilolitres||R15,82 per kilolitre||R17,86 per kilolitre (applied from 15 kilolitre)|
|20-30 kilolitres||R18,96 per kilolitre||R26,81 per kilolitre|
|30-50 kilolitres||R20,81 per kilolitre||R32,16 per kilolitre|
|50 kilolitres or more||R22,77 per kilolitre||R36,98 per kilolitre|
Other implications of Section 2C restrictions include:
SAVING WATER AT WORK
Start with your municipal bill and water meter
Your business’s total kilolitres consumption is indicated at the bottom of your account. Keep track of your consumption by keeping an eye on your water meter and checking all your taps and pipes for water leaks. If the leaks are on your side of the water meter, please contact a plumber as soon as possible to fix it. Please report leaks on the street/supply side of the water meter to 044 801 9262 or after-hours to 044 801 6300.
Save one: No more hose pipes and sprinklers
The new 2C restrictions mean you are not allowed to water your office gardens and lawns with a hose or sprinklers, nor are you allowed to clean outdoor surfaces such as pavements, windows and roofs with a hose pipe using municipal water. You can still water and clean with a bucket or watering can, but consider planting drought resistant plants in the long term.
Save two: Toilets
A toilet uses 6-16 litres of water per flush, depending on the size of the cistern, which can add up quickly in a business with several employees and customers. Put up signage, asking users to reduce water consumption and consider installing water reduction devices - but check before you do so, as not all toilets work well with it.
Save three: General use
Don’t let water run: close taps and put the plug in for everything you can. Catch cold water in the hot water pipes in a container when you wait for it to turn hot – fill the kettle with it.
Please report water leaks, burst pipes and other water-related concerns to our Civil Engineering Department, at 044 801 9262 or after hours at 044 801 6300, as soon as you notice them.
Contraventions of water restrictions can be reported on 044 801 6350. Repeat offenders can expect to pay up to R4 000 per offence, depending on the offence, or be jailed for up to six months if found guilty.
Last published 15 August 2017