Water Day Zero Coming To A City Near You

The citizens of Cape Town, South Africa are breathing a sigh of relief. “Day Zero,” when water taps for citizens and businesses shut off, had been projected to arrive in April. Restrictions on personal and agricultural water use have bought the city a reprieve. Yet a delay is not a solution.

The city’s 4 million people, already constrained to 90-second showers and a meager 13 gallons of water a day, will eventually face a day of reckoning when the taps run dry. Waiting in long lines at emergency distribution points to collect water rations of just 6.6 gallons per person could be in their future. Sanitation failures could soon follow, raising the risks of a disease outbreak and social unrest. The question for the people of South Africa’s most populous city is when—or if—their water supply will return to “normal.”

By: Paul Laudicina 

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