Cape Town, one of South Africa’s most popular city and tourist spot, is dreading the day when it is assumed that the water will completely run out. The city, with a population over 3.74 million, has witnessed severe droughts from 2015, resulting in the water crisis. Even though officials have not set a date for the dreaded day, the Day Zero—as it is called—is still expected to be someday in 2019, if conditions persist. And now, a marine expert claims to know of a solution, which may sound impractical, but not impossible.
Nick Sloane, an expert in marine salvages, suggests that transporting Antarctica’s iceberg to South Africa can resolve the issue. The required specifications of the iceberg would be a length of 1 kilometer, breadth of 500 meter and a depth of 250 meter, while also having a level surface. If the measure is successful, the iceberg’s water will be able to offer freshwater up to a hundred-and-fifty million liters per day for one year. He estimated that this water could supply around 30% of the region’s annual requirements. The iceberg would need to be hauled within a structure having textile insulation to avert its melting. Covering the distance between Antarctica and South Africa, a journey of 2,000 kilometers, would take up to three months. The major roadblock in this project would be the cost incurred, which is thought to be around $100 million, as well as feasibility of this operation. However, Sloane states that they have this aspect taken care of by private investors. The Cape Town authorities, meanwhile, are right now monitoring winter rainfall statistics, with their decision coming in August.
Meanwhile, Antarctica’s Pine Island Glacier has a source of active volcano bubbling underneath, which researchers have determined as the prime cause in the glacier’s melting and movement. This discovery took place while they were determining the ocean’s part in weakening of the glaciers. While they were sampling the water for presence of 5 inert gases, they determined high helium-3 concentrations, an indicator of volcanism. The researchers however maintain that climate change and global warming are still the driving factors for melting of the glaciers.