Cape Town had been waiting for Day Zero – when the town was projected to become the first city in the world to run of water.
When it rained on Friday, everyone ran out to rejoice.
“Sweet glorious rain! Get out your water tanks and save every drop because it’s raining in Cape Town. Expect 5-10mm in the city overnight with up to 20mm near the mountain catchment areas. Rain ends Saturday morning. But hey, we’ll take what we can get!,” wrote Derek Van Dam on his Facebook page.
Residents of the city have been under orders to save water meticulously to avoid the city’s taps running dry.
There is a very real chance that Cape Town will simply run out of water.
The city has had low rainfall for three years thanks to a severe drought that had depleted the water sources.
In January, local authorities slashed residents’ water allowance to 50 litres each a day- only enough for a very short shower and just one flush of the toilet.
Cape Town’s primary water supply, Theewaterskloof Dam has been the worst hit. Established in 1978, this is the largest dam in the Western Cape Water Supply System with a capacity of 480 million cubic metres.
As of Dec. 18, the combined level of dams supplying the city was at a mere 31 percent of capacity.
At the current rate of consumption, officials warn April 29, 2018 will become Day Zero, the day the city’s taps will be turned off.
“The city of Cape Town could conceivably become the first major city in the world to run out of water, and that could happen in the next four months,” Dr. Anthony Turton, professor at the Centre for Environmental Management at the University of the Free State, told the New York Times.
But will this be enough for the City? Pundits say no and that the rain only delays Day Zero to May.