Integrated Water Resource Management (IWRM) is a philosophy, a process, and an implementation strategy to achieve equitable access to, and sustainable use of, water resources by all stakeholders.

We offer the following IWRM services:


How we help

Each water use category has its own criteria and application forms to be completed according to the requirements of the Department of Water and Sanitation. License applications can prove a lengthy process causing long and costly delays to projects. Sometimes requirements only discovered by developers near the end of the project resulting in delays. Through established relationships and experience, we can facilitate efficient processing of applications, ensuring all required documentation and process is followed.

Water Use Registration


South Africa's scarce water resources are under increasing pressure. The Department of Water and Sanitation needs to know how much water is used, by whom, and where. All water users who are using water for agriculture: aquaculture, agriculture: irrigation, agriculture: watering livestock, industrial, mining, power generation, recreation, urban and water supply service must register their water use. This covers the use of surface and ground water.

Other water uses which must be registered include:

  • Diversion of rivers and streams;
  • Storage. Any person or body storing water for any purpose from surface runoff, groundwater or fountain flow in excess of 10 000 cubic meters;
  • Stream flow reduction activities. All afforestation (tree planting) for commercial purposes, including communal forestry for commercial gain, that took place prior to 1972, must be registered.
  • Local authorities and other bulk suppliers;
  • Controlled activities, such as irrigating with waste, power generation, atmospheric modification or recharging an aquifer;
  • Discharges of waste or water containing waste in terms of section 21 of the National Water Act.

Water Use Licence Applications

A Section 21 water use license application is required for any activity that occurs in the vicinity of or within watercourses or water bodies. Section 21 is divided up into 11 different water use categories as follows:

  • Taking water from a water resource
  • Storing water
  • Impeding or diverting the flow of water in a watercourse
  • Engaging in a stream flow reduction activity
  • Engaging in a controlled activity
  • Discharging waste or water containing waste into a water resource through a pipe, canal, sewer, sea outfall or other conduit
  • Disposing of waste in a manner that may detrimentally impact on a water resource
  • Disposing in any manner of water which contains waste from, or which has been altered in, any industrial or power generation process
  • Altering the bed, banks, course or characteristics of a watercourse
  • Removing, discharging or disposing of water found underground if it is necessary for the efficient continuation of an activity or for the safety of people
  • Using water for recreational purposes