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The main objective of this study is to develop a strategy that will set out a course of action to ensure adequate and sustainable reconciliation of future water requirements of the Mhlatuze Local Municipality with available supply, especially Richards Bay and its significant industries, as well as some smaller towns, for a planning period of 25 years.

Broad overview of a Reconciliation strategy: As the competition for water between the Environment, Industry, Irrigation, Mining, Strategic power generation and International obligation is increasing so are the challenges to meet those requirements, they are also exacerbated with climate change. Water reconciliation strategies are short, medium to long term intervention plans that seek to balance the available water with the current and projected demands over a specific planning horizon. The Reconciliation Strategy identifies, evaluates and prioritizes these interventions. Based on the recent extensive information in the study area, the strategy is flexible enough to accommodate future changes in actual water use trends and also takes full cognisance of all uncertainties by adopting a scenarios approach. The strategy does not necessarily conclude with specific options to be developed but rather identify potential options, or groups of options, which will form reconciliation scenarios, which could potentially be implemented. The Strategy will identify the degree of information (and the time frames) required to give effect to the Strategy as well as assign responsibilities to the various institutions involved in its execution.

The intervention options can be grouped into basically three categories these are Development options (dams, desalination plants, transfer infrastructure, etc), Management option (WC/DM, systems operation, eradication of evasive plants) and policy related (institutional restructuring, and Water reallocation).

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