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Water Rights in a Time of Fragility: An Exploration of Contestation and Discourse around Cape Town’s “Day Zero” Water Crisis

School of Law, University of the Witwatersrand, Johannesburg 2000, South Africa
Academic Editors: Bruce M. Wilson and Pankaj Kumar
Water 2021, 13(22), 3247; https://doi.org/10.3390/w13223247
Received: 27 September 2021 / Revised: 3 November 2021 / Accepted: 11 November 2021 / Published: 16 November 2021
South Africa is an interesting case study on the right to water. It is an upper-middle income country with a history and current reality of extreme racialised inequality, including the water services sphere. It is water scarce, and during 2018, Cape Town was expected to be the first major metropolitan city in the world to run out of water. South Africa has one of the most progressive constitutions in the world, which incorporated socio-economic rights including the right to water as explicitly justiciable long before the international right to water was recognised. However, despite clear water-security and water-equity fault lines on the one hand and conducive legal frameworks on the other hand, there has been relatively little water rights contestation in post-apartheid South Africa. It is this paradox and, in particular, how it played out in the clear case of water insecurity in Cape Town’s “Day Zero” crisis that are the subjects of examination in this article. Aiming to make an original contribution to the scholarship on the “Day Zero” crisis by exploring it from the perspective of interlocutors and those affected by it, this article also hopes to contribute towards a better understanding of the nature and application of water rights more broadly. View Full-Text
Keywords: Cape Town Day Zero; water rights; water scarcity; water-justice; water-governance; inequality; South Africa Cape Town Day Zero; water rights; water scarcity; water-justice; water-governance; inequality; South Africa
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MDPI and ACS Style

Dugard, J. Water Rights in a Time of Fragility: An Exploration of Contestation and Discourse around Cape Town’s “Day Zero” Water Crisis. Water 2021, 13, 3247. https://doi.org/10.3390/w13223247

AMA Style

Dugard J. Water Rights in a Time of Fragility: An Exploration of Contestation and Discourse around Cape Town’s “Day Zero” Water Crisis. Water. 2021; 13(22):3247. https://doi.org/10.3390/w13223247

Chicago/Turabian Style

Dugard, Jackie. 2021. "Water Rights in a Time of Fragility: An Exploration of Contestation and Discourse around Cape Town’s “Day Zero” Water Crisis" Water 13, no. 22: 3247. https://doi.org/10.3390/w13223247

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