Lesotho water shutdown won’t disrupt Gauteng’s supply, govt assures


The planned two-month operation and maintenance shutdown of the Lesotho Highlands Water Project (LHWP) was not expected to impact Gauteng’s water supply, acting Cabinet spokesperson Phumla Williams said on Friday.

Speaking at a post-Cabinet media briefing, she said that, to provide additional buffer storage in the Vaal dam and to ensure that the 780-million cubic metres of scheduled water volume transfers for 2012 were met, increased volumes of water were transferred in the last few months.

However, the planned maintenance could impact water users along the Liebenbergsvlei and Caledon rivers, and contingency plans were being developed should “the rivers dry up” during the maintenance period in October and November.

No water transfer to the Vaal system from the LHWP would be possible, as the tunnels would be drained to undergo the maintenance.