After a three-year long drought, Cape Town, South Africa is on the brink of reaching “Day Zero,”
or a day where only 13.5% of water is left. Rural areas are able to conserve water, but the largely populated urban city makes it difficult. Due to conservation efforts, Day Zero’s projected date of April 16th is now pushed
How has this effected the city? Residents say there’s been an extreme shortage of bottled water and those that have money to leave are doing so. Staged tariffs on water consumption are also put in place and people are not allowed to use more than 13 gallons of water a day.
Venice High sophomore, Sam Exler, visited Cape Town during the summer, and definitely saw a difference in how they used water. “We were constantly asked to limit the water we used and only got a certain amount during meals.”
How do Venice high students feel about the crisis? To sophomore, Agnes Phillips, who moved to Venice last year from Nigeria, the issue hits very close to home. “I’ve had to do it before, and I feel very bad for the people that live there, but if they try to find more ways to conserve water in their daily lives until the drought ends, I believe it’ll be fine.”
Junior, Danielle Lakins, believes that “although it’s really upsetting what’s happening, we need to focus our energy on the crisis in Flint, Michigan. Flint has been out of clean water for four years, and America’s actions needs to be directed to that instead.”
Another student was reminded of a similar situation here in Venice. “The issue with running out of water & having to conserve reminds me of what my family had to do during hurricane Irma,” states junior, Josie Hodges.
Whether water conservation is needed across the globe, in the United States, or in Venice, our generation needs to watch the way we treat the environment, as it’s the only way to ensure South Africa or any other nation never reaches “Day Zero.”