Aside from the pandemic, the world has a large problem to deal with in terms of climatic conditions, from wildfires in forests to harmful emission of gases in the air and oil spillage in the marines. The pandemic might not be the only hazard we would need to curb, especially to the South Africans. Earlier this week, it was reported that the greenhouse gas emissions were translating into an increased shortage of water supply in the country. This has prompted Cape Town city to be on the lookout and safeguard its water supplies in fear of an impending drought.
How Day Zero started in Cape Town
Back in the year 2018, South Africa experienced a drought that literally ran cape town dry. Hence the name Day Zero was realized. Following the catastrophe, officials have been working towards preventing the repeat of the events. Putting to use new high-resolution simulations from Stanford University and National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (N0AA) researchers to understand the future climate.
Lead author Salvatore Pascale, a research scientist at Stanford’s school of earth, energy, and environmental sciences, affirmed that events like Day Zero are 100 times more likely to come in the current era. A statement that the South African officials are making an effort to ensure does not come to be realized. If this day comes, more lives will be at risk, and livelihoods will suffer most.
The El Nino weather patterns being experienced worldwide add to the crisis of possible draughts in other places. Already the South African region has started feeling the impact and has some of its regions dry. The city has resorted to measures that can help save water and prevent the onset of Day Zero.
The strategies to save water in S.A so far.
Groundwater is now in more use than ever. The city authorities are as well working towards a reuse scheme that will help in water conservation. Encouraging the agriculture of drought-resistant crops and doing away with water-hungry invasive crops is highly being under implementation. Moreover, putting up a desalination plant is underway.
The efforts put in so far have had a positive impact. In a statement released by Alderman Xanthea Limberg, the mayoral committee member of water and waste in the city, 300 million liters of additional water supply was secured. In fact, there were 300 million liters of additional water supply per day in the next decade. Lakes and water reservoirs are as well back to normality. He further encouraged people to consider methods of preserving water for the sake of the future. This is due to a prediction by the National Academy of Sciences, which showed the possibility of the draught recurring again two or three times in a decade in South Western South Africa.
Drought in the rest of the world
States like California, southern Australia, southern Europe. Other parts of South America are in the same limbo as South Africa. According to Stanford’s predictions, these countries are likely to have their Day Zero in the coming years. And all these draughts are mostly facilitated by human-made climatic changes.
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