Groundwater plays a pivotal role in ensuring water security in South Africa. It supplies approximately 13% of the total water supply but often provide up to 100% of water supply to some areas. It is thus a resource of strategic importance. However, it development and management does not reflect this importance. The development of the resource is left at the mercy of municipal procurement and poor operation and maintenance. Groundwater, unlike surface water, requires constant monitoring and maintenance of the infrastructure. Often a lack of groundwater resources are blamed for service delivery issues when poor development and operation & maintenance are the root causes.
This dialogue is part of an effort to discuss the challenges experienced by the groundwater community and municipalities in optimizing the development and use of groundwater resources. The dialogue will also provide a platform to discuss possible solutions to address the challenges.