Where does Cape Town get its water from?
The water crisis in South Africa: can I still drink tap water?
Clean drinking water: save plastic-free water. Boiling, glass bottles or a coriander-based filter offer possible solutions.
The water crisis in Cape Town has recovered. You can read the latest about the water crisis in Cape Town here.
Clean drinking water is vital for us humans and access to it is therefore a basic right. The situation is serious in South Africa. The following applies to water consumption: 50 liters per person per day. Anyone who realizes that flushing the toilet requires around 35 liters per person per day and that a five-minute shower consumes 60 liters immediately understands the seriousness of the situation. In Germany, water consumption per capita is around 121 liters per day, more than twice as high and in other countries such as Great Britain around three times as high.
But the water shortage in South Africa is not the only problem. As in many developing countries, the country is also struggling with quality problems. Simply turning on the tap and taking a sip of water to drink is not a good idea in many areas of the country. The drinking water in South Africa is increasingly polluted with harmful substances.
In Cape Town, many residents now consume water from plastic bottles. Plastic bottles have become more and more a status symbol. Unfortunately, this is an additional burden for the environment, as it produces enormous amounts of plastic. It would only be necessary to filter the drinking water appropriately. Intelligent recycling of weakly contaminated wastewater, for example from showers or kitchen sinks, could reduce the water consumption of households without actually withdrawing water from them.
Save water in Cape Town with as little plastic as possible
The lesser evil is a 5 liter canister. This lasts for a day or two. It's still plastic, but less so. The recommendation is therefore that those who can buy drinking water in glass bottles, otherwise boiling it helps first. The drinking water from the tap in the center of Cape Town is harmless, as well as in the mountains and in nature reserves. Be careful with drinking water in the suburbs.
Possibilities for cleaning: filter systems
Due to drought and pollution, drinking water in plastic bottles is increasingly becoming a status symbol in South Africa. Anyone who can afford it and really wants to drink water that is harmless to health can simply buy it on the open market. Unfortunately, this is an additional burden for the environment, as it produces enormous amounts of plastic.
It would only be necessary to filter the drinking water appropriately. Intelligent recycling of weakly contaminated wastewater, for example from showers or kitchen sinks, could reduce the water consumption of households without actually withdrawing water from them.
Nature offers an excellent natural path in the form of carbon. When this carbon is in a high quality water filter, it removes practically all impurities from drinking water. This also includes disinfection by-products that can cause cancer, lead, and even microbes.
If guaranteed microbial elimination is your primary concern, then UV cleaning with ultraviolet light can produce water that has been shown to be 99.999% sterile. This is particularly important for children, the elderly or people with a weakened immune system. UV light and filters are a simple, inexpensive and environmentally friendly solution for this.
Reverse osmosis is another method of filtering. The water is passed through a semi-permeable membrane, which effectively removes viruses, bacteria and chemical impurities. Reverse osmosis is particularly useful when the water source is unknown or the water may be contaminated, as is often the case in South Africa.
If water filters are not an option, you can simply boil the water for disinfection, which many South Africans do as a stopgap measure. However, this does not help against heavy metals and other environmental toxins.
But there are a number of plants that can be used to purify the water from toxins. For example, scientists from Mexico have developed a coriander-based water filter that can reduce exposure to heavy metals such as lead. Coriander is readily available, inexpensive, and has long been known as a home cleansing remedy.
More information about drinking water at: www.waterlogic.de
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