Assessment of long-term water demand for the Mgeni system using Water Evaluation and Planning (WEAP) model considering demographics and extended dry climate periods
Keywords:water demand, water supply, water resources, water consumption, water allocation
The Mgeni System is recognised as the main source of water supply for the Durban and Pietermaritzburg region in South Africa. This area is regarded as the primary economic hub of KwaZulu-Natal Province, and this brings about a high level of demographic pressure, with potential water supply problems in the future. This study investigates the water resource situation in the Mgeni System and evaluates future supply and demand accounting based on the (Water Evaluation and Planning) WEAP software. WEAP was used to analyse the study area for the period 2009–2050 to assess the impacts of various scenarios on future water supply shortfalls. Four scenarios were used, which take into account changing population growth rates and extended dry climates. The study found that the catchment is relatively sensitive to changes in population growth and extended dry climates, and this will alter the water availability significantly, causing a water supply deficit. In response to the projected future water demands, one technique to overcome the unmet demand is by introducing water conservation and demand management (WC/DM) strategies to reduce the water losses and shortfall encountered. By implementing adequate measures, water losses can be reduced, preventing water scarcity and giving decision makers time to provide further solutions to water supply problems.
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Copyright (c) 2023 Vernon Nagan, Mohammed Seyam, Taher Abunama
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