Lessons learned from the Cape Town Drought

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During National Water Week this month, the University of Cape Town’s (UCT) African Centre for Cities (ACC) released a paper which warns that the Cape Town drought has powerful climate-change adaptation lessons for other South African municipalities.

The drought that Cape Town and many parts of the Western Cape experienced was so severe that it was a one in 590 years instant. The city was in the grip of its most severe and protracted drought in our recorded history

Titled “Unpacking the Cape Town Drought: Lessons Learnt”, the paper is aimed at ensuring that these lessons will serve to inform other municipalities addressing the issue of drought and water insecurity.

The research also revealed the complexity of urban governance, illustrating how something that initially appears to be an environmental concern in fact impacts on all aspects of city life, including economic opportunities, politics and social dynamics, among others.

During the Cape Town drought dam levels dropped from 100% in 2014 to just below 19% in 2018.

Concillor Xanthea Limberg, Mayoral Committee Member for Water and Waste in the City of Cape Town spoke at LCA Spark Talks about some of the lessons learned during the near-disastrous drought.

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