8.5 Scheme Elements

The presently authorized groundwater use of 11.5 L/s (about 1,000 m3/day) from the Kwanokathula Aquifer could potentially be tripled to about 3,000 m3/day through MAR. The aquifer would need to hold the recharged water from winter when it is recharged until summer when the water is abstracted again during the peak season. The summer peak demand for Plettenberg Bay is 12 to 13 million liters/day and the peak week Christmas-New Year is 17 to 18 million liters/day. The water supply scheme elements are shown in Figure 43. The MAR pre-feasibility study indicated how the scheme could be expanded (Figure 44).

Schematic diagram of the existing water supply arrangements for Greater Plettenberg Bay

Figure 43  Schematic diagram of the existing water supply arrangements for Greater Plettenberg Bay (Murray, 2007).

image showing Kwanokathula’s existing and planned boreholes

Figure 44  Kwanokathula’s existing and planned boreholes (Murray and Ravenscroft, 2010). Existing abstraction = yellow; planned abstraction = dark green; planned injection = bright green; planned monitoring = orange.

The study also indicated how peak demand could be met through incorporation of MAR into the Plettenberg Bay supply system (Table 11). Injection would take place July-September and abstraction November-March, with rest periods in between.

Table 11  Existing and proposed water supply for Plettenberg Bay (after Murray and Ravenscroft, 2010).

Water supply Source Comment (ml/day)
Existing water supply Surface water (drought)
Existing boreholes
Roodefontein Dam
8.6 million liters/day (normal)
(off-channel storage dam)
Existing water supply Desalination
(under construction – Nov. 2010)
(during peak demand periods) 2.0
Proposed water supply Artificial recharge (over the 5 peak demand months) 2.3
Total 17.4

MAR Cost Comparison with Desalination

The estimated cost of the proposed option is approximately US$ 1.8 million. It was proposed that the project be implemented in phases with the first phase targeted for completion in 2013. The MAR capital cost is about a third of the current cost of desalination plants, which would serve a similar application of being used only during the peak demand periods. The operational costs of artificial recharge are also expected to be considerably less than desalination (Murray and Ravenscroft, 2010).


Managed Aquifer Recharge: Southern Africa Copyright © 2021 by Eberhard Braune and Sumaya Israel. All Rights Reserved.