"The time to act for everyone's sake is now".

If the city fails to resolve the problem and secure alternative water sources, Capetonians will be forced to queue for their daily ration of water, no more than 25 liters (5.5 gallons), at numerous government-organized outposts around the city.

With dam levels now at 28.7 percent capacity and only 39 percent of Capetonians using 87 litres of water or less per day, additional water restrictions are on the cards.

To avoid this disaster, the city is now asking residents to limit themselves to 50 litres per day.

The new targets will remain in place for 150 days before the city reassesses the situation.

The city has no choice by to force people to stop wasting water.The council will on Friday (18 January) be voting on a punitive tariff that will charge residents exponentially higher rates for water usage above 6,000 litres per month.

As the second-most populous urban area in South Africa after Johannesburg, Cape Town is the capital of the Western Cape province and the seat of South Africa's Parliament, with a population of almost four million. It has increased to 618 million litres per day, up from 578 million litres. However, the city is facing its worst water crisis in a century. It needs to start by communicating its Day Zero plans in excruciating detail and possibly even running Day Zero rehearsals across the city. Irrigation use from boreholes and well points will also be further restricted. It also assumes that no water supply augmentation projects will be online before Day Zero. Thus, it is imperative that the City either institute comprehensive measures to curb water stockpiling, or take the inevitable escalating demand into consideration when forecasting the Day Zero date. If the region reaches "Day Zero" 200 water points will be opened in an attempt to tackle this shocking water shortage. Most schools and many businesses would have to close. If they don't, all of their taps could be shut off by April.

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