Implementation of the Reserve

Existing WRC projects (as well as other initiatives) have come a long way towards the development of the techniques and tools that are required to support the determination of the water quantity component of the Ecological Reserve. Some of these projects will continue in 2003, while parallel projects are addressing the water quality component. However, discussions between the IWR staff and various groups within the Department of Water Affairs and Forestry (Hydrology, RDM Office, Water Resources Planning and the Regional Offices) have suggested that there are a number of outstanding issues that are associated with the use of the determination results and their implementation. Implementation in this respect, refers to the use of the results for licensing new water use abstractions (and streamflow reduction activities) by the Regional offices, as well as the establishment of rules and procedures for the operation of water resource development schemes.

The IWR and DWAF drafted a document during early 2002 identifying some of these issues and they were discussed further in July 2002 with representatives of the regional offices. A great deal more clarity has therefore emerged about what the issues are and a 1-year WRC project was initiated in 2003 to investigate them in further detail (in collaboration with the relevant DWAF offices) and develop appropriate tools and procedures that will resolve the issues. At present there appear to be a number of misconceptions, which often contribute to some of the perceived difficulties of implementation. It is also possible that the identification of some of the constraints on implementing authorities will contribute to improvements in the Reserve determination processs.

As many of the existing models and tools that support the determination of the Reserve have been incorporated into the SPATSIM system, the existing information on Implementation Issues has been included as part of the SPATSIM help system.

All interested parties are invited to review the current documentation of the issues (and some suggested solutions) and forward their comments and suggestions to Denis Hughes ( (at) The IWR will then incorporate these into the documentation and attempt to address any problems during the course of the WRC project.

Note that access to the Reserve Implementation component of the SPATSIM help allows the user to access all the other online SPATSIM help components (see also the IWR Home Page link to Hydrological Models and Software)

Last Modified: Tue, 09 May 2017 10:55:44 SAST