By Lezette Engelbrecht
The need for water is universal, defying location, background or social standing. It is vital to almost every living system – plants, animals, and the numerous materials that sustain humankind. It underpins the functioning of schools, hospitals, agriculture and industry. Yet, it is also a resource that is becoming increasingly threatened, while not enough is done to protect and preserve it. According to the Department of Water and Environmental Affairs, demand will outstrip supply across the country by 2025, with this being a reality in Gauteng in 2013 already. This month, as South Africa celebrates both World Water Day (22 March) and National Water Week (17-23 March), the need to effectively manage this precious resource is more pressing than ever.