DID YOU KNOW?
The Drakensberg Mountains in the Mpumalanga region form the water shed between rivers flowing to the Indian Ocean via the Thukela flow, and the Atlantic Ocean via the Vaal and Orange Rivers. One of the country's largest interbasin transfer schemes is downstream and it transfers water from the Thukela to the Vaal, where it eventually reaches the Gauteng province.
Free flowing rivers
Interbasin transfer systems
Supplies water to
Unsustainable land use practices pose a major threat to ecosystems and the livelihood of local communities. Land use that damage flood plains, river banks, and wetlands reduce the regulating capacity of catchments and increase erosion and sediment loads in rivers as well as the risk of flooding.
Large Scale Plantations
Badly managed tree plantations cause serious environmental and social problems through the clearing of natural forests, destruction of wetlands and invasion by alien plants. Additionally, because they are often alien plant mono-cultures they consume large amounts of water.
Acid mine drainage (AMD) from coal and gold mining areas has had devastating impacts on water resources, with acidification of rivers and streams, elevated metal levels and consequent fish die-offs. Many of our catchments are already heavily polluted by mining and an estimated R30 billion is required to clean South Africa’s nearly 6000 abandoned mines.
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