SA is a water scarce and dry country

THEMBA KHOZA | Let’s make water conservation fashionable, part of our lives

04 September 2023 - 11:03
By Themba Khoza
SA is a water-scarce and dry country in need of strengthened conservation efforts
Image: Thulani Mbele SA is a water-scarce and dry country in need of strengthened conservation efforts

SA is a water scarce and dry country, and this calls for the strengthening of water conservation initiatives to ensure reliable water supply and water security for the current and future generations, especially in the midst of climate change.

It is high time that we make water conservation a priority and ensure that not a single drop of precious water go to waste. Let us make water conservation fashionable and part of our lives. Let us normalise saving water as part of our daily routine. Let us not only think about water conservation during crisis situations when water restrictions are considered or implemented.

Water conservation is everybody’s business and if we work together, we can prevent waste and water losses that are threatening the water security of our water scarce country. Working together, we can save more water and contribute to reliable water supply and water security.

If we make water conservation a norm, we can close all the leaks. Making water conservation a norm will ensure that leaks are not acceptable in our communities, leading to huge savings of precious water. Making water conservation a norm will make people understand that leaks, water losses and water wastage are not normal and must always be prevented. This will lead to people fixing leaks in their households and reporting and putting pressure on municipalities or relevant authorities to fix any leaks as they surface.

Municipalities and other relevant authorities must also prioritise the operations and maintenance of water services infrastructure to ensure that the infrastructure is functioning well and not prone to breakdowns and pipe bursts which lead to serious losses of precious water.

Adults need to take the baton and lead by example. They must educate children about the importance of water conservation in our water scarce country. Parents must be responsible and behave in a manner that will reinforce positive behaviour in their children. Adults must showcase water conservation actions and behaviour, which will rub off their children to create a responsible society that cares and use water wisely and sparingly.

If we advocate for responsible action in relation to water use, we will have responsible communities that value every single drop of water. It is important that we talk water conservation and make it part of our culture. The more we talk about it, the more it will be entrenched in our lives and become part of our routine activities.

Water wastage is one of the challenges encountered in the country mainly due to the lack of understanding the importance of every drop. Let us inculcate a culture of water conservation. If water conservation is a norm, we will not see the water wastage that is associated with welcoming spring on Spring Day. Let us be responsible and welcome spring in a colourful manner but let us refrain from wasting water in the name of welcoming spring.

Water is life and every living creature needs water to survive and thrive. It is crucial that we use water wisely and sparingly to ensure reliable and sustainable water supply and water security for all.

Water security depends on water conservation. Let us make water conservation a norm and part of our culture in our communities to build a water savvy society.


  • Khoza is a communicator in the department of water & sanitation