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Water Week on Table Mountain

  • By Lynnette Johns
  • March 20 2013
One of the many streams that run down the mountainside. Photo courtesy of  <a href='http://www.flickr.com/photos/davidambrocik/4798472544/'>Haphazard Traveler</a> One of the many streams that run down the mountainside. Photo courtesy of Haphazard Traveler

As custodians of Table Mountain, we are serious in our responsibility to preserve its beauty, flora and fauna for future generations, and we are mindful that conserving water, one of our most precious resources, is paramount.

The Cableway has made sustainable development fundamental to our business, and we are a leader in the field of responsible tourism.

This year National Water Week, from March 18 to 24, has been themed “Water is life – Respect it, Conserve it, Enjoy it” by the Department of Water Affairs. Cape Town is a particularly water-stressed region and even though fynbos has adapted to grow with very little water, it and the thousands of other fauna and flora on the mountain still need water.

“We are privileged to manage an attraction that is in a national park and is a New7Wonder of Nature. We are conscious that we need to reduce the impact that the 800 000 visitors per annum have on our site,” says Sabine Lehmann, managing director of Table Mountain Cableway.

Our water conservation efforts have resulted in the Cableway saving more than one million litres of water per year. Our modern recycling toilets use the latest technology to recycle water from the hand basins for flushing; water usage in the toilets has been reduced from 0.75 litres to 0.6 litres per visitor.

Other measures to minimise water consumption on this New7Wonder of Nature include the introduction of waterless urinals and push-button taps, and changing all flush toilets to a dual-flush mechanism.

We also Introduced compostable cutlery and crockery and moved the production kitchen to the lower station, resulting in a saving of one million litres of water per year, our biggest annual water saving measure.

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