The Hessequa Municipality in Riversdale in the Western Cape is set to build the country’s first solar-powered desalination plant.
The project will commence in October, it is co-funded by the Western Cape Government through the drought relief fund and by the French government.
Riversdale and surrounding areas are also affected by the drought in the region.
The Municipal manager of Hassequa, Johan Jacobs says the plant will produce 100 kilolitres of fresh water per day, powered by solar energy only.
“Sustainable water supply is one of the most important resources of municipalities. Climate change is a reality. We can no longer rely on normal rainfall patterns,” says Jacobs.
Jacobs says innovative measures must be taken to supply sustainable water.
“One of the biggest critiques of desalination is the cost of electricity, but with the use of voltaic energy from a solar energy plant, the desalination is now affordable to municipalities,” adds Jacobs.