Over the last couple of decades Integrated Water Resources Management (IWRM) has become the defining water policy paradigm across the globe. Drawing on IWRM ideas, South Africa has in many ways been a pioneer in terms of water policy and legislation.
The 1998 Water Act was an attempt at getting to grips with the injustices of the past and ensuring a more equitable and sustainable management of the country’s water resources. However, it attempted to do too much, too fast. The need is now to concentrate on pragmatic solutions that work, with an emphasis on equity and poverty reduction.