drinking water qu ali t y in south africa 2008 portfolio committee public hearings on water quality
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DRINKING WATER QU ALI T Y IN SOUTH AFRICA 2008 Portfolio Committee Public Hearings on Water Quality. “Its not only about science; Its mainly about People.” . DWQM Compliance. Regulation 5 under Section 9 of the Water Services Act of 1997: Suitable Monitoring Programme;

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drinking water qu ali t y in south africa 2008 portfolio committee public hearings on water quality

DRINKING WATER QUALITY IN SOUTH AFRICA 2008Portfolio Committee Public Hearings on Water Quality

“Its not only about science; Its mainly about People.”

dwqm compliance
DWQM Compliance
  • Regulation 5 under Section 9 of the Water Services Act of 1997:
    • Suitable Monitoring Programme;
    • Compare Results to SANS241:2006;
    • Respond and Communicate.
  • Regulation 2834 Water Act 1985 Requirements:
    • Skills required per class of works.
  • Section 62 of Water Services Act of 1997:
    • Performance must be reported to the Minister.
compliance monitoring challenges
Compliance Monitoring Challenges
  • Compliance Monitoring discrepancies:
    • DWQ Regulation monitoring determines fitness of water supply for human consumption.
    • EHP (Dept of Health) monitor environmental health.
    • This difference in approach results into a difference sampling approaches, i.e. disinfection of tap. This could lead to a worse picture projected than reality.
    • EHP’s only focus on E-coli, Total Coliforms, Heterotrophic Plate Count. SANS 241 is much more extensive. Two of these are Operational and not Compliance Limits. This could lead to the under-projection of the reality.
  • Too much focus is given to the monitoring of DWQ while this is only the output of an extensive DWQ Management approach.
the context
The Context
  • Globally, focus on water crises related to quantity, however recently, with increasing environmental degradation, there has been an acknowledgement that quality is central to the “water crisis”
  • Current focus in SA is ensuring access to safe drinking water by all by 2008
  • South Africa has set ambitious targets- ASGISA 6% economic growth and this will have a bearing on both quantity and quality of water
  • Other sectors, e.g. DOA, DALA and DOH have set targets that affect water. DOA’s target is to increase productivity of sector by 10-15%, given that water quality is linked to sustainable food production, what should be our response?
  • It is OUR responsibility that water quality aspects are not lost in all the above objectives
the importance of both quantity and quality
The Importance of both Quantity and Quality
  • Water is life, and without it there is no life, development or economic growth
  • The Economy- no sector of the economy can do without water

Increased growth and productivity in all the sectors of our economy will have an impact on our water resources- increased incidents of pollution, pressure on existing infrastructure, treatment works, hospitals etc. Studies conducted in 1999 in China showed that the value of water pollution was at about 0,5% of the countries GDP, what would be the value in SA including loss of life?

  • Health- 2 million children all over the world die of water related disease, diarhea still the number one killer and not HIV/AIDS

HIV/AIDS a challenge in SA, poor drinking water quality will have an adverse effect on the already vulnerable groups

overview of current south african dwq situation
Overview of current South African DWQ situation
  • The larger majority of the South African people are supplied with safe drinking water, especially those residing in cities and bigger towns. In some of the smaller towns the lack of technical expertise and inadequate treatment infrastructure have resulted in DWQ at times not complying with national standards (SANS 241). Lately more than 50 000 sample analysis; (per month) taken from 3200 sampling sites across the country. For the past 13 months compliance levels with Health Aspects of SANS 241:2006 have been on average 94% (this in spite of a remarkable increase in DWQ data being submitted to DWAF.).
  • This information derives from the 90% of WSA’s reporting DWQ info to DWAF via the electronic water quality management system. (In 2005 only 42% of WSA’s were monitoring DWQ.)
major sources of pollution
Major sources of pollution
  • Mines (esp abandoned)
  • Industry
  • Poor/Improper Waste Management
  • Municipal Waste Water treatment Works ( WWTW)
  • Diffuse pollution from human settlements
priorities programmes
PRIORITIES ( Programmes)
  • Water use authorizations: Licence conditions ( RoDs- Waste)
  • Training and capacity building: continued efforts ( shared knowledge & skill with Municipality)
  • Training Program is being developed for Operators
  • CM&E project: (Implementation BUT speed up finalization of framework and concerted effort in implementation. Many examples (in Gauteng and Mpumalange, for instance) exist where mines comply to directives being issued to them. DWAF also successfully took the mines in the KOSH area (Klerksdorp, Orkney, etc) to court in 2005.
priorities programmes1
PRIORITIES ( Programmes)
  • Municipal waste water framework: developed within next 2 years; continued support to municipalities
  • Implementation of Enforcement protocol: Request for co-operation of municipalities
  • Waste Management: Function is now with DEAT Co-operative agreement with DEAT; implementation
  • Eutrophication /nutrient management: framework finalised, Implementation underway
  • Awareness raising: project started
priorities programmes2
PRIORITIES ( Programmes)
  • WWTWs status database; unlawful use & Compliance status: share information with regions; develop agreed PoA
  • Remediation of mercury contaminated land: continuing
general findings of dwq regulatory investigations
General Findings of DWQ Regulatory Investigations
  • Process Controllers not always adequately skilled to operate water treatment facilities.
    • Solution: DWAF is reviewing Reg.2834, to ensure that WSA’s invest in constantly building the capacity of process controllers.
  • Municipalities not availing sufficient funding for DWQM. (Especially treatment chemicals and monitoring).
    • Solution: DWAF has embarked on a plan to keep citizen’s informed with credible information on the levels of confidence the Regulator has in DWQ management in the various municipalities. Water Safety & Security Plans are also being implemented.
  • Insufficient investment in infrastructure (treatment + reticulation).
    • National Treasury has availed some funding to DWAF to be allocated to smaller municipalities with bulk treatment infrastructure inadequacies.
  • It must be noted that even though some of the plants were producing good quality water, the state of the infrastructure was far from adequate.
    • This is the single most concerning factor to DWAF since the threat remains that our high levels of good quality tap water could decline should we fail to make sufficient investments in the key DWQ assets.
response to the eastern cape case
Response to the Eastern Cape Case
  • Following revelation of infant deaths and possible links of diarrhea cases to water quality failures, DWAF is taking a stronger Regulatory stance. We are looking at intervention measures to ensure that the DM adresses its capacity constraints.
  • Realized that DWQM is not only a technical / scientific issue, but communication and social behavior issues equally important,
  • DWAF now distributing monthly letters to WSA’s instructing WSA’s to notifying consumers of failures.
  • Taking a proactive and where necessary a force full role.
  • Ensure water safety & security plans implemented as lives are at stake! ZERO TOLERANCE TO NON COMPLIANCE
proactive and reactive

Proactive and Reactive

Regulation of DWQM

dwq regulatory initiatives information management
DWQ Regulatory InitiativesInformation Management
  • Facilitation of DWQ Info Management by means of theeWQMSroll-out. (>90% WSA’s utilizing the DWQM system; Award winning initiative; both IWA Europe and NSTF Award).
  • DWAF developed its own Regulatory system (automated data transferal between eWQMS & DWQRS).
  • Data credibility assurance programme:
    • DWQ Laboratory Initiative (6 laboratories were assessed)
    • Registration of DWQ Monitoring Programmes
    • Ad hoc Regulatory Audits
dwq regulatory initiatives progressive steps
DWQ Regulatory InitiativesProgressive Steps
  • Water Safety & Security Plan process was initiated. A generic Plan was developed together with WRC. Considered as good practice by IWA and WHO (May 2008).
    • All (9) the 2010host cities and towns has WS&SP.
    • Lately Kungwini (GP) and Standerton (MP) were also included.
    • (Eastern Cape) Ndlambe; OR Tambo and Ukhahlamba will be introduced to this initiative within next 3 months.
    • Incremental roll-out in other Regions.
    • Rand Water developed accredited training; DWAF & SALGA attended.
water safety security plans 3 main benefits
Water Safety & Security Plans3 Main Benefits
  • Fulfill the Definition of DWQM at WSA / WSI level.
  • Will ensure that risks are known and being managed and mitigated.
  • The process will strategically inform finance requirements for Infrastructure Refurbishment (Asset Management).
dwq regulatory initiatives p rogressive regulation
DWQ Regulatory InitiativesProgressive Regulation
  • World Water Monitoring Day being used to communicate DWQ to the wider public. (Citizen Tap Water Confidence programmes)
  • DWQ Legislation & Standard Review (Reg. 5 + R.2834; SANS 241:2006).
  • Rendered support for Sector Development Initiatives e.g. TAC, Process Controller development etc.
  • Blue Drop certification initiative.
    • Inform the public on the quality of DWQ Management in their area of residence….
blue drop certification 3 main benefits
Blue Drop Certification 3 Main Benefits
  • Serves as a DWQ goal (Incentive for WSA / WSI to achieve.
    • Name and Praise
  • Brings the Public Opinion into the equation.
    • Ensure Citizen Confidence in tap water.
  • Will reduce regulation load:
    • Mutually beneficial for Regulator; Supplier & Citizen.
other regulatory issues
Other Regulatory Issues
  • Commenced facilitation of water treatmentchemical regulation intention.
  • Participate in beneficial Initiatives:
    • Sound Asset Management, The development of a WS Infrastructure Asset Management Strategy;
    • Strengthening of the First Barrier (Waste Water Management Regulation);
    • Promoting good DWQ on Private Land
  • Where gross failure (both DWQ and Waste Water) is detected, the Department do take action according to the Enforcement Protocol. (Especially when WSA has the competency to comply.)
reactive regulation enforcing compliance flow diagram
Reactive Regulation - Enforcing ComplianceFlow diagram


Regulate according to PoA

Plan of Action Submission

Legal Action

Polluter PP

Meet Municipal management

Deliver formal notification

Phase B: Enforcement Protocol

Detect Non-compliance

diarrhea outbreaks
Diarrhea Outbreaks
  • There are intelligence that suggests that outbreaks or the sustained effects are not always due to poor water quality only.
  • Generally outbreaks can be linked to the following disease pathways (triggers):
    • Consumption of contaminated water;
      • Tap water
      • Collected Tap Water
      • Untreated water
    • Consumption of contaminated food;
    • Fecal-oral route, Person to person;
    • Disease vectors such as flies;
    • Inhalation of contaminated pollen or dust particles;
    • Skin penetration of pests; eg. Hookworms;
    • Etc.
  • CSIR and DWAF is engaging to research this matter to provide intelligence for future prevention.
    • Adequate Diarrhea records from Health would be crucial for such a research.
    • Research commenced in Eastern Cape in parallel with other short term initiatives.
other challenges
Other Challenges
  • General Deterioration of sub-surface water resources (unconfined aquifers in rural areas.)
  • Lack of municipal funds for adequate DWQM and all subsequent challenges, such as:
    • Insufficient monitoring
    • Lack of operational monitoring equipment;
    • Etc.
  • Lack of Process Control and Infrastructure Asset Management skills.
way forward
Way forward
  • Minister’s budget vote speech indicates that DWAF to take a tougher stance towards regulation- this applies to issues around pollution, DWQM etc.
  • Investigations and discussions being undertaken to look at proactive measures of preventing incidences similar to those of EC, e.g. the legislative framework, powers and functions, and partnerships
  • A strategy for WfGD is being developed, this will address compressively water resources management in the context of a growing economy.
way forward1
Way forward
  • DWAF is working on strengthening collaboration between Dept of Housing, Health and DME to tackle issues related to implications of poor service delivery
  • The reality is DWAF is operating under serious capacity constraints, the technical and scientific skills required to deal with challenges not available in the country
  • 100% compliance to DWQ targeted to be one of the deliverables for 2010
dwq is not only about science its mainly about people

DWQ is not only about Science; Its Mainly about People.

Thank you.