In South Africa Cape Town region declares drought disaster
01:58, May 28, 2017
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South Africa's Western Cape Province is experiencing its worst drought in over 100 years, with government urging residents to reduce water usage, local news reported on Tuesday.
In 2015, drought-hit northern Mpumalanga and Limpopo provinces were declared disaster areas for agriculture, including the sugar-growing province of KwaZulu-Natal and the maize-growing Free State and North West provinces.
These out of the ordinary actions will keep going for three months if the emergency situation doesn't change, she said in an announcement.
"The disaster declaration will accelerate the Western Cape Disaster Management Centre's "Avoiding Day Zero" project‚" said Zille.
The most immediate interventions in the coming days will include the drilling of boreholes at hospitals, starting in the metro and followed by schools in high-risk water-scarce areas, according to the City.
"Funding will be reprioritized provincially and, should further assistance be needed, the province will approach National Treasury and the National Department of Water and Sanitation", the statement said.
Not only was it revealed that rainfall amounts for February to April this year were less than the rainfall amounts for the same period last year, but the experts warned that the rainfall deficit was so severe now that any rain the area receives will be immediately sucked up by the dehydrated soil.
The province assured the public that the declaration was not cause to panic. Hydrological disasters were declared in Prince Albert, Witzenberg and Oudtshoorn.
Colin Deiner‚ chief of the province's Disaster Management and Fire Brigade Services‚ said the province had short-‚ medium- and long-term projects under way.
While it remains a cause for concern, we believe the current drought is an opportunity to innovate and act responsibly in the way we make use of our water resources.
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