The Executive Mayor of Nelson Mandela Bay, Cllr Athol Trollip, today, August 21, 2017, officially commissioned the long-awaited Phase Two of the Nooitgedagt Water Treatment Works, bringing huge relief to the already pressurised water distribution to the City.
Since 2008, the Metro has been experiencing severe drought conditions, which saw the water levels of the major supply dams dwindling to their current low state, to such an extent that water restrictions were implemented by the Municipality in 2016.
The Nooitgedagt Water Treatment Works (NWTW), situated in the jurisdiction area of the Sundays River Municipality, provides most of the bulk drinking water consumed by Nelson Mandela Bay residents. The key advantage of the Treatment Works is that it receives its raw water from the Gariep Dam, which is situated up country and is therefore not affected by local droughts. Under severe emergency conditions, the Treatment Works could potentially supply more than 50% of the City with water.
For this reason, a decision was made to augment the Nooitgedagt Supply Scheme, as this would provide additional assurance of supply when the supply from the west (the Churchill and Impofu dams, located on the Kromme River) falls under threat from drought conditions.
The Municipality has over the last number of years accordingly carried out the planning, design, tender preparation, contract administration and contract supervision for the augmentation of the Nooitgedagt Supply Scheme.
The augmentation of the Water Treatment Works was originally planned to take place in four phases, each phase adding treatment capacity of 70 Ml per day, unlocking total treatment capacity of 280 Ml per day. However, the Department of Water and Sanitation (DWS) has reduced the allocation from the Gariep Dam to the Metro to an average of 160 Ml per day, rising to 210 Ml per day during peak hours.
Although the commissioning of the NWTW will not be a solution to the full water crisis facing the City, a visibly pleased Executive Mayor Trollip said that he was happy that work in terms of Phase Two had been completed. “We must admit that the completion of this work will bring about huge relief to our water distribution system, more especially at the time when we are facing a water crisis. The areas we are drawing water from through this treatment works are not yet affected by the current drought. However, we continue to call on our residents to use water sparingly,” said Executive Mayor Trollip.
The Executive Mayor added that he was also pleased that work on Phase Three at the Treatment Works had already commenced. “We will soon be coming back with the Minister of Water Affiars to officially turn the sod for Phase Three construction. This is a clear message to residents and business that this is a City at work. Forward thinking is key to economic development and job creation. Water security is one of the pillars,” said Executive Mayor.