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26 March 2018 Photo Pixabay
Back to the drawing board to save water
We’ve managed to damage nature’s ‘filter’ with air, ocean, and soil pollution, and by destroying wetlands.

Dr Cindé Greyling, a University of the Free State (UFS) DiMTEC (Disaster Management Training and Education Centre for Africa) alumni, studied drought mitigation with a strong focus on communicating important water-saving information. 

Can we run out of water?
Yes, and no, says Dr Greyling. “To our knowledge, water is not ‘leaking’ through our atmosphere. We have what we have, but that doesn’t mean we will have enough clean, fresh water forever. Nature has a magnificent way of purifying water through the water cycle. We, on the other hand, must use a lot of money and energy to purify water. Also, we’ve managed to damage nature’s ‘filter’ with air, ocean, and soil pollution, and by destroying wetlands. The other problem is a simple supply and demand scenario. More people will need more water, but not only that, population growth calls for industry development and increased food supplies – all of which require more water.”    

A war over water
Besides some Hollywood impressions, it is difficult to imagine a war over water, but it is possible. “Some experts are convinced that we are heading there, and others claim that such tensions already exist. Personally, I don’t favour these kinds of shock tactics (or truths) – social research has shown us that it rarely leads to behavioural changes. We can learn a lot from what was has been done in Cape Town. Although we all think people were bombarded with ‘Day-Zero’-scares, they were actually encouraged to adapt their behaviour with a communication campaign that hardly ever used the term ‘Day-Zero’. This approach mobilised citizens to reach record lows of water usage.” 

Adapt a new normal
Dr Greyling encourages the “new normal” set in motion by Capetonians. “Water consciousness is needed, even when the rain comes again. We’ve taken water for granted for too long. As consumers, we have the power to turn this situation around – drop for drop. Be aware about the amount of water you use, how you use it, and for what. Keep in mind that any wastage and pollution (of ‘dry’ things) also wastes and pollutes water. Generally, we need to behave better regarding consumption.”  

News Archive

Five times unbeaten
2011-12-14

 
The UFS tennis team won the goldprize at this year's USSA-tournament.

For the fifth time in a row, the tennis team of the University of the Free State (UFS) won gold at the tennis championships of the University Sports South Africa (USSA) tournament. The tournament was held from Monday 5 December 2011 till Friday 9 December 2011 at the University of Stellenbosch, where 21 teams from 18 tertiary academic institutions participated.

After the USSA tournament, four Kovsie players were included in a training group to take part in training camps, tournaments and trials in preparation of the Confederation of University and College Sport Association (CUCSA) Games to be held in Namibia in 2012. These four students, namely Duke Monro, Christi Potgieter, Elizna Barnard and Este Portgieter, were also selected for the training group to the World Student Games (Universiade) in Russia in 2013.

In 2010, six of the players from the UFS were included in the South African team to the CUCSA Games in Botswana. This year the UFS produced three players to the Universiade in China.

The coach and team manager of the Kovsie team, Marnus Kleinhans and Janine de Kock, were also appointed coach and manager of the South African Student team to the CUCSA and World Student Games for the next two years.

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