Wetskills-South Africa 2023
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Wetskills-South Africa 2023
February 11 - February 23
Wetskills Challenge in Cape Town & Visit to the Ocean Race
Again a Wetskills Event in South Africa! Another challenging event, for students and young professionals from South Africa, other African countries and elsewhere around the world, all eager to make a difference in the water sector and experience working in an international team. For this special event we visited the Ocean Race, and all teams worked on out-of-the-box solutions for water & sustainability cases.
Next Event in South Africa will be on 28 May – 9 June 2023! This will be an event in and around Durban, with teamwork, interesting field visits and a special focus on water in cities #CoCreateMYCITY – see more
Previous events in South Africa were in: Cape Town 2012, Nelspruit 2014, Durban 2016, Cape Town 2018 and Gauteng 2022. A digital W@tskills edition was organized in 2021, during the corona pandemic. Read more about the great finals at the WISA 2018 Conference in Cape Town in presence of Mr Gugile Nkwinti, Minister of Water and Sanitation of South Africa, and Mr Henk Ovink, Dutch Special Envoy for Water.
Finals and Workshop
Watch the event video!
Finals & Awarding
The jury panel announce Team SSWEFT as winner of Wetskills-South Africa 2023 (Cape Town) in the Two Ocean Aquarium. The team worked on a case of case owner Water Research Commission. They came up with a new model to strengthen regional cooperation in the SADC region and enhance economic development using the water-energy-food (WEF) nexus.
Case 1: Strengthening Cooperation and Capacity Development in SADC through WEF-Nexus
Case owner: Water Research Commission
The SADC region (Southern African Development Community) is home to about 90 million people, of which over 60% live in rural areas depending on agriculture, only 61% have access to safe drinking water, 39% to adequate sanitation, and 24% of the total population and 5% of rural people having access to electricity. Although the region is endowed with abundant water, agricultural, and energy resources, the distribution is uneven, and exploitation and access are unequal, resulting in perpetual poverty and resource insecurity. The region receives about 2,300 km³ of renewable water resources annually, yet only 14% is retained for use. Of this retained water, 18% is used for domestic purposes and the rest for agriculture and industry. How can new pathways strengthen regional cooperation and enhance economic development without leaving anyone using the water-energy-food (WEF) nexus.
Case 2: Community Capacity Development for Water Footprint Compensation
Case owner: 11th Hour Racing Team, Environmental Monitoring Group (EMG), Water Footprint Implementation (WFI)
Global water resources are under pressure. Regulatory and restorative actions on the local or river basin level are needed to prevent further pressure. To respond to this need, we intend to link water consumption for production to water compensation activities. The 11th Hour Racing Team, EMG, and WFI are working together in an EMG-led pilot project to determine the feasibility of community capacity building in water management as a water footprint compensation activity. How does the EMG pilot project serve as a blueprint for other community capacity-building wetland restoration projects in developing Water Footprint Compensation?
Case 3: Solid Waste Management in Informal Settlements
Case owner: Blue Deal South Africa
Water is life. And this resource is under threat. Pollution due to solid waste is one of the causes. Dumping of waste alongside rivers and stream deteriorates the water quality. When discharged into sewers, it clogs manholes and leads to overflow of the sewers. Especially in informal settlements, due to a lack of infrastructure solid waste management is a huge task for the local municipalities. How can solid waste management be properly and sustainably be implemented in informal settlements considering the social-economic situation?
Case 4: Sustainable Sludge Management at Rand Water Panfontein Sludge Treatment Plant
Case owner: Rand Water
Rand Water, the largest water utility in Africa is currently facing challenges with handling dewatered sludge – a of the by-product from its water treatment process – at its Panfontein Treatment Plant. The plant currently produces 600 tonnes of sludge per day and us quickly running out of storage place. This causes several logistical and environmental concerns. How can Rand Water optimize the sludge dewatering process and reduce the sludge time drying time to, inter alia, minimize the volume of sludge produced, shorten the sludge drying time and thus reduce the cost of the process.
Case 5: Empowering an Alumni Community for Action-driven follow-up of great ideas
Case owner: Young Water Professionals South Africa & Wetskills Foundation
‘Stop Talking, Start Doing’. That was the theme of the YWP Conference in South Africa in 2015. ‘A little Less Conversation, A little More Action’ was the theme of the Young Water Professionals Programme of Amsterdam International Water Week 2013. Young Water Professionals South Africa and Wetskills are youth programmes which have been uniting talent for more than a decade. A lot of co-creation (like Wetskills ideas) and community building have been established in South Africa and beyond. How can WISA-YWP and Wetskills accelerate follow-up activities of fresh (WetsNext) ideas with the combined Water Talent Community in South Africa of the last decade?