Vaal Triangle History
1889 - 1902
Klip Power Station
1939 - 1945
Further additions to both the Vereeniging and Zuikerbosch works continued as the demand for water escalated. The importance of the Vaal Dam as the central storage reservoir for the Vaal River System Supply area (Gauteng and the surrounding provinces) could never be overemphasied as these areas generated more than 50% of South Africa’s gross geographical product (GGP), and more than 80% of the country’s electricity. Even in the early 1960’s it was recognised that Vaal DamThe Vaal Dam was precariously low during the 1970’s and the first of the interbasin transfer systems, the Tugela-Vaal scheme through which water is transferred via the
During the serious drought of 1983, the water resources in the adjacent Komati and Usutu basins were badly depleted, leading to serious concerns that the water supplies to various power stations could be affected. As 80% of the country’s electricity is dependent on water from the Komati-Usutu-Vaal system, it was estimated that the newly completed (1982) Grootdraai Dam would empty within a matter of months. An emergency scheme was initiated to pump water upstream over a distance of 202 km to Grootdraai Dam from Vaal Dam. The emergency scheme involved constructing 7 weirs, each with numerous pumps capable of pumping a total of 1 million m3/day (Ml/d). The emergency scheme was, fortunately, never used.
New schemes were continually being investigated. Even in the early 1950’s, investigations to harness water at high altitude in the mountains of Lesotho had been carried out.