Perth dodged a water crisis like Cape Town's Day Zero — but the city's still not out of the woods

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Imagine having to wait in a queue to collect a 25-litre daily ration of water because your city's taps have run dry.

That is a doomsday scenario only narrowly avoided by South Africa's drought-stricken Cape Town, which was facing the prospect of becoming the world's first major city to run out of water.

According to experts, it is a catastrophe that could have also played out in Perth — a city similarly in the throes of a drying climate.

But as Cape Town officials race against time to secure the city's water supply through systems that do not rely on rainfall, such as desalination, Perth has reached a major milestone.

Its two desalination plants in Kwinana and Binningup — which turn seawater into drinking water — recently ticked over the one-trillion-litre mark.

Period21 Jun 2018

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