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Cape Town Advised to Clear Non-Native Trees to Boost Water Supply

Nov. 16, 2018, 4:01 PM

Cape Town, the South African city that threatened to turn off the taps this year as it confronted a water shortage crisis, should clear thirsty alien trees as a cheaper alternative to building desalination plants or wastewater recycling systems, according to a conservation organization.

Removing non-indigenous trees from water catchment areas could add two months of water supply each year, according to research published in Cape Town Nov. 16 by the Arlington, Va.-based Nature Conservancy. Building desalination plants and wastewater recycling systems would cost on average 10 times more than rooting out invasive pine, acacia, and eucalyptus trees, according ...