Jeffreys Bay
Kouga has to reduce water usage

Kouga’s people have won the holiday water war, but an even tougher challenge lies ahead – cutting back water usage by 15% over the next three months to avoid a steep tariff increase.

Kouga Infrastructure, Planning and Development Portfolio Councillor, Desmond Petersen, said the Council was very pleased with the efforts made by residents and holiday-makers to save water over the Festive Season.

“Reservoir levels remained stable during our busiest time between Christmas and New Year.

On behalf of the Council, I would like to thank residents and visitors for their understanding and cooperation in helping us to ensure that there was enough water for everyone,” he said.

Petersen warned that the biggest water challenge now lay ahead.

“We cannot overstate how serious the situation is. Water restrictions and punitive tariffs are in effect. We need to cut back water usage drastically and meet the target set for us by the Nelson Mandela Metro by the end of March.

“If we don’t, the municipality will have to start charging residents and business even more for water from April,” he said.

Kouga receives the bulk of its water for domestic use from the Metro and has been mandated to decrease this consumption by 15%.

Petersen said a household that uses 12kl or less water per month would not pay any more under the current punitive tariffs, which came into effect on 1 January 2017.

“However, once your consumption goes over 12kl per month, you will feel the difference.

“For example, a household that uses 35kl of water per month and was paying R354 will now pay R578 for the same amount of water,” he explained.

“If we fail to meet the 15% target, the Council will have to consider upping the punitive tariffs from April.

Those using 12kl or less water will then also start paying more while the price for 35kl of water will go up to R847.”

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Petersen said the last bulk water reading, taken mid-December, showed an alarming nine percent increase in water usage compared to the previous year.

“We will be taking the December/January reading soon to see if there has been any decrease compared to the previous year.

“The Council will do all we can to avoid steeper tariffs, but to succeed, we need everyone on board, saving water in whichever way we can.

“Let’s make these next ten weeks count and keep water prices down. It is in all our best interest,” he encouraged.

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