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Verlorenvlei Hydrological Impact Review

At the beginning of 2021, Umvoto was appointed to undertake a hydrogeological impact review of the Verlorenvlei system, situated near Elands Bay along the West Coast of the Western Cape. Recognised as a Ramsar site (i.e. a wetland site of international importance) in 1991, the Verlorenvlei system comprises a freshwater coastal lake and reed swamp connected to the ocean by a small rocky estuary. Verlorenvlei’s ecological health and source of water predominantly relies on groundwater, as the West Coast is a water scarce area due to its semi-arid environment receiving less than 400 mm of annual precipitation. Verlorenvlei has dried up extensively since the extended Western Cape “Day Zero” drought period from 2015 to 2018. Umvoto conducted a critical review of the hydrogeology of the Verlorenvlei system (based on historic and more recent available data, documents, and reports) to better determine whether increased agricultural activity and associated groundwater abstraction are having a negative impact on Verlorenvlei.

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8 Beach Road

muizenberg, Cape town