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University of South Africa (2018)

Water management in the wildlife lodge industry : a multiple case study in South Africa, Namibia and Botswana

Grobler, Jacobus Johannes

Titre : Water management in the wildlife lodge industry : a multiple case study in South Africa, Namibia and Botswana

Auteur : Grobler, Jacobus Johannes

Université de soutenance : University of South Africa

Grade : Master of Science (MS) in Environmental Management 2018

Résumé
Water is life, and without it nothing can survive. All plants and animals need water to survive, whether it is fresh or salty. Climate change and pollution contribute greatly to the decline of freshwater supply and quality (National Geographic, 2015). According to the United Nations, 10% of the global population does not have access to clean water (UN Water, 2016) while World Health Organisation (WHO, 2009) stated that 3,4 million people die annually from water related diseases. The tourism industry across the world requires water for basic human consumption, irrigation of gardens and golf courses, preparation of food and drinks, making snow for winter sports and general water activities such as swimming or motorised water sports (Gössling et al., 2012). Many tourism lodges in the wildlife lodge industry in South Africa, Namibia and Botswana are in remote areas where little or no infrastructure exist. These lodges are dependent on natural water sources such as rivers, dams and boreholes to supply their water demand. The main objectives of the study were to determine water quality and quantity management in lodges from South Africa, Namibia and Botswana. The objectives were divided into sub-categories such as frequency and comprehensiveness of water quality analysis, the current quality of water at each lodge, water consumption per capita, establish benchmarks for the lodges and investigated other management components such as stakeholder involvement, financial implications and the monitoring of water management systems Across all three countries, 29% of the lodges have tested the water quality of their source, 61% tested water quality on their taps and 19% tested water quality of their wastewater discharge. From the 61% that did water quality tests on their tap, only 11% tested more than 37% of the required parameters as stated in the countries relevant standards and guidelines. The results indicated that the average water consumption across all three countries were 2073 l/g/n or 503 l/b/n when staff is included. Strong correlations were established between water consumption, the guest to staff ratio and rate in US $ when all three countries were considered. The water quality results indicated that several lodges had issues with Iron, Sulphate and Chloride levels. The author concluded that the current water management systems can be improved to ensure that water quality is managed more sustainably in the wildlife industry. The biggest concern relates to wastewater discharge, where very few water quality analysis are done. This has the potential to cause pollution and degrade ecosystems. It was recommended that more frequent and more comprehensive water quality analysis must be carried out on wastewater discharge as well as tap water to ensure water is safe for consumption. Lodge managers can appoint designated personnel to ensure that water meter readings are taken monthly and that they are probably recorded. The use of modern equipment such as pulse meters will prevent meters from seizing. Smart meters can be used to upload data to a cloud where WIFI is available

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