Kouga Municipality is another step closer to achieving water security for the communities of Hankey and Patensie.
“Groundwater exploration in and around the towns has finally borne fruit and the municipality will soon start equipping and connecting boreholes to the water treatment works,” Executive Mayor Horatio Hendericks said.
“Our hope is that the combined yield will be sufficient to stop water rationing, a measure we were forced to take when the national Department of Water and Sanitation cut the quota from the Kouga Dam to both towns.
“While the quota is under review, early indications are that the national Department will not be increasing the allocation.
“This means alternative sources must be secured and developed to augment the supply to the towns and bring an end to watershedding.”
The municipality last year secured more than R41-million from the Provincial Disaster Relief Fund for groundwater and borehole development at Patensie and Hankey.
“Three boreholes were drilled in Patensie. Two boreholes delivered good blow yields of 20l/s and 40l/s while the salinity of the water is also at an acceptable level,” Hendricks said.
“Pump tests are currently under way and we are awaiting the detailed data analysis.
“The next step will be equipping and connecting the boreholes to the Patensie water treatment works, situated about 1,3km from the site.”
According to the Mayor, finding viable groundwater sources at Hankey had proven far more challenging.
“Our exploration team initially focused their efforts on municipal land to the south of Hankey. Four exploration boreholes and one production hole were drilled, but the results were disappointing.
“They then moved their focus to the neighbouring property, which is privately owned. A total of 17 exploration and five production holes were drilled, with the latter delivering promising blow yields of up to 21l/s,” he said.
“As with Patensie, the results of the pump tests are being awaited. The next step will be equipping and connecting the boreholes to the Hankey water treatment works, situated about 12km away from the site.”
He said the municipality’s legal team was drafting an agreement between the municipality and land-owner for the drilling of boreholes for municipal use while servitude rights were also being formalised.
“We are very pleased that we will soon be in a position to break Hankey and Patensie’s dependency on the Kouga Dam.
“Despite the dam being situated in Kouga, it belongs to the national Department of Water and Sanitation and is also used to provide water to the Nelson Mandela Bay Metro,” he said.
“As a result, it is not managed in the best interest of the Hankey and Patensie communities. This has led to an intolerable situation, both for Kouga Municipality and the communities we are sworn to serve.”