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University of Free State, one step ahead of the water shortages crisis predicted

The University of Free State has improvised an alternative means to spearhead water shedding and restrictions that are slowly looming. In the midst of impending water restrictions and potential disruptions in municipal water supply, the University of the Free State (UFS) has introduced water reservoirs to provide for its Bloemfontein Campus.

The university has been working on this project since May 2015. The reservoirs are meant to ensure that in times of water shortages and restrictions, the Campus activities are not disrupted. This means that reservoirs are on standby to be utilized as soon as there is a water cut. This will ensure that no disruption or crisis befalls the university and learning can progress without any concerns.

The reservoirs will store and supply water amounting to the volume of two, 1,045-kilometer tanks. However, the reservoirs’ supplies are only able to sustain the university for 24 hours. Therefore, these reservoirs will provide water only for the day-to-day human needs such as consumption and not for irrigation purposes.

The two reservoirs, which are worth 4 million Rands, are located on the western part of the Bloemfontein Campus, adjacent to the Animal Research Unit. They will be used together with the current 250 mm-diameter pipe providing water to the Bloemfontein Campus. The reservoirs will supply the pipe with water when required during times of municipal water service disruptions.

It is estimated that the project will be completed by the end of July 2015. With water shortages being predicted and are becoming an ugly reality in provinces such as North West and, most recently, KwaZulu Natal, this is a great move by the University of Free State as water is a basic commodity. A day without water can pose a threat especially to health.

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