The new year saw a progressive worsening of the country-wide drought. It’s becoming a growing reality that water restrictions will become the norm, rather than the exception. In KZN, however, some rain has fallen in the Drakensberg and Midlands regions, but Zululand remains critically dry.
Lake St Lucia is at an all-time low at about 15 – 20% percent of its normal capacity. Recent aerial monitoring showed extensive dry lake-beds. It is at times like these that water trickling out of the dunes of the Eastern Shores section that maintains seeps, small wetlands and streams that enable wildlife to survive. The iSimangaliso Wetland Authority, responsible for the over-all management of this World Heritage Site, is currently negotiating relief strategies. For more about this story and the iSimangaliso Wetland Park click here: www.isimangaliso.com
We can all play our own small part by being mindful of how we use water at home and in our daily lives. South Africa is a water-poor country and it is imperative that we guard very jealously our scarce water resources. Any threat to these has to be vigorously resisted, while water conservation has to become a ‘top-of-mind’ issue. Fracking is probably the greatest threat to our ground-water supplies, and we all have a responsibility to oppose it wherever it might rear its ugly head. For a chilling look at the effects of fracking in other parts of the world see: http://www.gaslandthemovie.com/
The words of the old Native American Cree prophesy are very true: “Only after the last tree has been cut down, only after the last river has been poisoned, only after the last fish has been caught, only then will you find that money cannot be eaten.”
The Cree are one of the largest groups of indigenous peoples of North America, located mainly across Canada, and historically in the United States from Minnesota westward but are found today in Montana .