JAN 25, 2018 7:19 AM PST

Cape Town is about to run out of water


Cape Town, South Africa, will become the world's first major city to run out of water on April 12. That's the day that scientists have calculated as "Day Zero," or to be more specific, the day when, after three years of drought, the city's reservoir will drop to 13.5% of capacity and the remaining water will go to hospitals and informal settlements.

Residents of the city will have to rely on communal taps, of which there will be around 200 distributed throughout the city. Just weeks ago, on January 18, the city realized the state of crisis it is in, when the mayor announced, "We have reached a point of no return." Previously, the government had hoped that voluntary conservation of water from residents would be enough to wait out the drought until the winter rains begin. But that is not the case. Now every individual will be limited to collected 6.6 gallons a day at the communal taps, and the city has capped water usage at 23 gallons of water per day per person, including for bathing and flushing toilets.

What would you do if this was your city about to run out of water? This is a reality that we should all be thinking of. Watch the video to learn more.
About the Author
  • Kathryn is a curious world-traveller interested in the intersection between nature, culture, history, and people. She has worked for environmental education non-profits and is a Spanish/English interpreter.
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