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Water Wise Watch - November 2020


WW Watch November 2020


This month at Water WiseAs we move closer to the end of the year, the general consensus is that this year has presented us with unprecedented times that reminded us of the invaluable role nature plays in our daily lives. The COVID-19 pandemic has highlighted our undeniable reliance on water, since it has been one of our defense mechanism towards reducing chances of infection. However, this also points out the dire need to conserve water as it is a limited natural resource. More than ever, this is the time to prioritize the implementation of water-saving practices to ensure we do not come to  “day zero” due to the high demand of water usage for proper hygiene purposes.

Basic steps to work on changing behaviour towards water in the office and home; 

  • Make it a habit to report leaking taps and leaking toilets at the workplace.
  • Develop a routine to monitor your water meter and check for leakages around the house.
  • Retrofit taps with aerator flow restrictors and flow regulators on shower-heads.
  • Reduce the amount of time spent in a shower by a minute per week, to reach a goal of showering for 5 minutes only.

Vegetable gardeners can;

  • Water vegetable crops early in the morning before 10:00 or after 16:00.
  • Reduce the use of potable water to irrigate crops and consider using greywater (avoid water that may contain blood, oil or grease), and implement rain water harvesting.
  • Invest in drip irrigation, or hose pipes fitted with trigger nozzles and watering cans with rose-heads.

More Water Wise practices can be found here.

TTD0Every South African knows the importance of having access to sanitation, as it is a basic human right. Like many other countries, there are still households that lack access to clean water and hygienic and functioning toilets. As we approach World Toilet Day on 19th November; it is essential to realize that, while the majority of households especially in urban areas utilize flush toilets, there are still people who practice open defecation. This unintentional exclusion that confronts the country, should be a reminder that a simple basic human right, such as access to adequate sanitation, is a privilege that not everyone can afford. Hence, it is important not to take basic sanitation facilities for granted. Given that we are a water-scarce country, and that the vast majority of households have flush toilets, adopting mindful practices that ensure the preservation of water availability is critical in the face of the COVID-19 pandemic and climate change.

Read more about World Toilet Day here


WW tip of the month

How to check for a toilet leak:

Toilet - Dye

  • Place a few drops of dye or food colouring in your cistern/tank.
  • Without flushing, note if there coloured-water running into the toilet bowl.
  • If there is a leak, the appearance of coloured-water is seen inside the toilet bowl. 
  • Immediately take action to fix the toilet leak.
Click here for more information on DIY toilet leak-fixing.
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Environmental days


November 2020 05 Nov: World Tsunami Awareness Day
19 Nov: World Toilet Day
21 Nov: World Fisheries Day

Water and environmental news


"The Department of Water and Sanitation calls on Gauteng residents to continue saving water despite some small dams in the province being in a stable state, according to this week's state of reservoirs report issued..."
Biodiversity loss threatens us all
"South Africa has not yet backed a global pledge supported by more than 70 countries that commits to reversing biodiversity loss in the next decade. Countries including India, Brazil, the United States and..."
Biodiversity threatens all
"Most of South Africa’s seasonal rainfall occurs during the warmer summer months, from October to March. As a result, October is an important period for farmers to begin planning when to sow crops..."
"Sweet potato biodiversity can help increase the climate resilience of small-scale farming, according to the findings of a study undertaken by a multi-institutional collaborative of researchers. The findings of this global analysis..."

Dam capacities