SciELO - Scientific Electronic Library Online

vol.43 issue1Threats and opportunities for post-closure development in dolomitic gold mining areas of the West Rand and Far West Rand (South Africa) - a hydraulic view part 3: planning and uncertainty - lessons from historyA falling-head procedure for the measurement of filter media sphericity author indexsubject indexarticles search
Home Pagealphabetic serial listing  

Services on Demand



Related links

  • On index processCited by Google
  • On index processSimilars in Google


Water SA

On-line version ISSN 1816-7950
Print version ISSN 0378-4738


FISHER-JEFFES, LN; ARMITAGE, NP  and  CARDEN, K. The viability of domestic rainwater harvesting in the residential areas of the Liesbeek River Catchment, Cape Town. Water SA [online]. 2017, vol.43, n.1, pp.81-90. ISSN 1816-7950.

By 2030 South Africa (SA), a developing country, is predicted to be severely impacted by physical water scarcity. In order to avert a future water crisis, the country needs to find ways to reduce its reliance on conventional surface water schemes based on impoundments on rivers. Rainwater harvesting (RWH) is an alternative water resource. To date, the viability of domestic RWH within an urban setting has not been adequately considered in SA. The purpose of this study was thus to address this omission through the detailed modelling of a representative catchment. The Liesbeek River Catchment in Cape Town -comprising some 6 200 domestic properties in 6 suburbs covering an area of around 1 300 ha - was chosen for this purpose; and a new computational tool, the Urban Rainwater/Stormwater Harvesting model (URSHM), was developed to take best advantage of the available data. The analysis showed that: RWH was only economically viable for a minority of property owners; climate change is likely to have limited impact on the performance of RWH systems; and - contrary to some claims - RWH is an unreliable means of attenuating peak stormwater flows.

Keywords : domestic rainwater harvesting; alternative water resources; developing country.

        · text in English     · English ( pdf )


Creative Commons License All the contents of this journal, except where otherwise noted, is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution License