Water and Sanitation Regulations: Transforming Water Use Licensing in South Africa

1 min read
water scarcity national water act

The Department of Water and Sanitation (DWS) of South Africa has recently revised the regulations for water use license applications to ensure equitable allocation of water resources and streamline the licensing process. The revised regulations were published on May 19, 2023, in response to President Cyril Ramaphosa’s call to reduce the processing time from 300 days to only 90 days.

Water Scarcity in South Africa

South Africa is among the 30 driest countries globally, making water scarcity a critical issue. With the majority of catchments being in deficit, 98% of the country’s water resources had already been allocated by 2004. However, there is a significant disparity in water allocation between Historically Advantaged Individuals (HAI) and Historically Disadvantaged Individuals (HDI). To bridge this gap, the DWS seeks to make meaningful changes.

National Water Act (NWA) of 1998

The National Water Act (NWA) of 1998 acknowledges water as a shared natural resource that should be allocated equitably among all users. The Minister of Water and Sanitation, acting as the public trustee, is responsible for ensuring that the water is used sustainably, beneficially, and in the public’s interest, while upholding environmental values.

Thresholds of Abstraction Volumes

The revised regulations propose thresholds of abstraction volumes of water, based on the level of black ownership in applications submitted for new water use allocations. This measure aims to transform water use allocations and redress the disparities carried over from the Apartheid era. The DWS encourages stakeholders to provide constructive proposals on this vital mandate.

Amendments to Water Use Licensing Fees

The draft regulations propose amendments to water use licensing fees that reflect the complexities associated with the administrative processing of such licenses, the resources required, and the accelerated approach in keeping with the reduced processing period.

Minimum Information Requirements for Unconventional Gas License Applications

The revised regulations also introduce minimum information requirements for unconventional gas license applications, anticipating that South Africa will explore alternative energy sources. The minimum information requirements will enable applicants to be well-versed before submitting their applications.

Public Comments and Collaborative Effort

The public has been invited to submit written comments on the proposed regulations within 60 days. This collaborative effort aims to create a more equitable and efficient water licensing process that benefits all South Africans and ensures the sustainable usage of the country’s water resources. With these amendments in place, the nation takes a significant step towards addressing long-standing disparities and ensuring fair access to one of its most precious resources.

A Russian-Spanish journalist and Cape Town native, channels his lifelong passion for South Africa into captivating stories for his local blog. With a diverse background and 50 years of rich experiences, Serjio's unique voice resonates with readers seeking to explore Cape Town's vibrant culture. His love for the city shines through in every piece, making Serjio the go-to source for the latest in South African adventures.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

Previous Story

Honoring the Legacy of Councillor Fikile Alfred Jakeni

Next Story

Western Cape Dam Levels See Significant Increase in Storage

Latest from Blog

The Pioneering Movement Against Cable Theft in Cape Town

Cape Town is fighting against metal theft using advanced technology like infrared cameras and a tollfree hotline with an incentive program for those who provide information that leads to the capture and prosecution of cable thieves. The city is also using a billboard campaign to deter potential thieves and reinforcing patrols to increase the pressure on metal thieves. The public is encouraged to report any suspicious activities and serve as protectors of the infrastructure in their local areas. Despite the challenges, Cape Town remains resilient and innovative in its fight against metal theft.

Cape Town’s Urban Evolution: A Citizen-Driven Transformation

Cape Town is planning to convert selected roads into oneway streets to improve road safety and ease peakhour traffic. The city is inviting its citizens to participate in the decisionmaking process by providing feedback on the proposal. The city administration is committed to transparency and has set up multiple avenues for the public to express their views and concerns, fostering active citizen engagement and shaping the city’s urban evolution in a participatory and democratic way.

Nadal’s Thrilling Anticipation at Roland Garros

Rafael Nadal’s future at Roland Garros is uncertain, as the tennis titan hints that he may not be ready to announce his final departure yet. The anticipation surrounding his potential final appearance at the event adds an exciting layer of intrigue, as Nadal approaches the tournament as a dark horse, facing physical challenges in the past year and a half. Despite the uncertainty, Nadal’s legacy at Roland Garros is imperishable, a testament to his skill and fighting spirit.

The Unraveling Drama at Elite Cape Town Schools

The ‘BishBosch brawl’ refers to a violent incident between two prestigious Cape Town schools during a water polo match. The incident resulted in severe injuries and a civil damages claim of R645,000. The case has uncovered longstanding tensions and aggressive behavior between the two schools, highlighting the need for stricter control and discipline at school events. The court case reveals a culture of ‘goading’ and verbal taunts between the schools, emphasizing the importance of maintaining decorum and discipline at educational institutions.

The Buzz in Football World: Anticipating a Sensational Season

Football fans are buzzing with excitement as they anticipate an upcoming season. Will Khama Billiat make a comeback to the Zimbabwean national football team? Former teammate Willard Katsande has hinted at the possibility, but a reliable source suggests that his chances are currently 50/50. While Billiat’s inclusion could provide a muchneeded boost to the team’s performance, the decision ultimately lies with Billiat himself. As fans speculate about Billiat’s potential return, the final decision is his to make.