Water consulting makes up the majority of the engineering consulting demand

30 April 2019 Consultancy.co.za

Water crises in a number of cities, combined with natural distasters caused by climate change and a lack of sustainable supply is driving up the demand for engineering consultancy services in the domain of water management, according to Managing Director of SRK Consulting Vis Reddy.

The engineering consultancy space has become increasingly competitive across South Africa, particularly as the country looks to develop its infrastructure to support its economic recovery. In this context, major consultancies such as Aurecon and SRK Consulting have been thriving.

While Aurecon is looking to become a development partner to the government, SRK Consulting has become an increasingly trusted source of expertise on the country’s infrastructure development. According to the firm’s analysis, water consultancy is becoming the biggest area of engineering consultancy in terms of demand.

Epitomised by the Cape Town water crisis – which culminated in an ominous countdown to ‘Day Zero’ when the city would run out of water – South Africa has been experiencing a severe water shortage over the last year. Experts have been working to solve the crisis, and the consulting industry has been an integral part of this process.

Water consulting makes up the majority of the engineering consulting demand

In 2017, the Boston Consulting Group (BCG) collaborated with the World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF) released a report detailing the measure that could be taken on an urgent basis to prevent the water crisis in the country. Conservation techniques and smart water distribution were among the recommendations.

According to Vis Reddy, SRK Consulting has come in demand to help achieve these goals. Currently, Reddy states that the country’s water management systems suffer from poor long-term planning, and climate change is accentuating the weaknesses in the infrastructure.

“As the country faces a backlog in water infrastructure maintenance, it must also plan ahead more effectively and implement strategies to supply the growing population and deal with the impact of climate change. The droughts in various parts of South Africa have enabled the firm to use its water-focused expertise,” says Reddy.

Reddy believes that an aquaculture development zone (ADZ) in Saldanha Bay offers substantial opportunities for his firm. “This will allow for greater ease of access to new market entrants, in line with government policy to promote economic inclusion,” he says.


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