Rainwater Harvesting

Rainwater harvesting (RWH) is a simple method by which rainfall is collected for future usage. The collected rainwater may be stored, utilised in different ways or directly used for recharge purposes. With depleting groundwater levels and fluctuating climate conditions, RWH can go a long way to help mitigate these effects. Capturing the rainwater can help recharge local aquifers, reduce urban flooding and most importantly ensure water availability in water-scarce zones. Though the term seems to have picked up greater visibility in the last few years, it was, and is even today, a traditional practice followed in rural India. Some ancient rainwater harvesting methods followed in India include madakas, ahar pynes, surangas, taankas and many more.

This water conservation method can be easily practiced in individual homes, apartments, parks, offices and temples too, across the world. Farmers have recharged their dry borewells, created water banks in drought areas, greened their farms, increased sustainability of their water resources and even created a river. Technical know how for the rooftop RWH with direct storage can be availed for better implementation. RWH An effective method in water scarce times, it is also an easily doable practice. Practical advice is available in books written by Indukanth Ragade & Shree Padre, talks by Anupam Mishra and other easy to follow fun ways

Read our FAQ on Rainwater Harvesting and have many basic questions answered.

  • Water crisis is a reality in most of India. After the summer of droughts come the monsoon floods. Take Maharashtra, for instance. If at one time it is desperately searching for drinking water, at another time, its capital, Mumbai is wading through knee-high water. How do we overcome these annual cri...
    Manu Moudgilposted 9 months 1 week agoread more
  • Summer temperatures soar to a gruelling 50ocelsius in Rapar, a little known block in Gujarat’s Kutch district. Land here is dry, saline and arid; the monsoon is erratic. Many a times, the entire year’s rain falls in a short span of two or three days, doing more harm than good. Dubbed a dark zone...
    sabitakaushalposted 9 months 1 week agoread more
  • Maharashtra government withdraws plea against ban on construction on wetlands   The Maharashtra government has withdrawn its petition seeking modifications in an earlier court order pertaining to banning of constructions in wetland areas. In the last court hearing, the state government wa...
    swatiposted 9 months 2 weeks agoread more
  • The cracks on the parched land of Bundelkhand are waiting for the monsoon to quench the thirst of its arid landscape. Despite the wide-spread drought here, Pipara, one of the villages in the region, stands apart as the only one that has not run completely dry.  “Only seven-10 percent of vill...
    makarandpurohitposted 10 months 18 hours agoread more
  • Rural India walks too far to quench their thirst Going by the 2011 census data, 63 percent of rural India does not have a source of drinking water at home and they walk more than 500m daily to get drinking water. The data has revealed that households in rural Odisha take the longest average walking...
    swatiposted 10 months 6 days agoread more
  • Vikram Patel, a 71-year-old farmer in Chidavad village of Dewas district in Madhya Pradesh is one of the first farmers to have embraced the idea of farm ponds to increase the groundwater level in his farm. “For the last two decades, the Chidavad village in the Tonk Khurd block, was one among the ...
    makarandpurohitposted 10 months 1 week agoread more
  • Gajanand Sharma is excited about the monsoon this year. He is building an anicut on the small stream that runs through his farm. “After the rain, the land will be filled with water and then I will sow wheat and reap record production in this area,” he prophesises. This forecast doesn’t come fr...
    Manu Moudgilposted 10 months 2 weeks agoread more
  • With two consecutively weak monsoons, this summer is particularly difficult for India. Around 330 million people across 10 states are affected by the drought. Most of these areas are ecologically and economically disadvantaged. Lands are degraded, rainfed farming is the norm and livestock graze...
    Manu Moudgilposted 11 months 1 day agoread more
  • Rapid growth in population, agriculture production, industrialisation and urbanisation have put an extreme burden on India's dwindling water resources. Water-guzzling paddy covers maximum gross area under cultivation at 44 million hectares. Disputes related to inter-state rivers have been rising be ...
    Manu Moudgilposted 11 months 4 weeks agoread more
  • Hello Rainwater should go to underground with the help of small pipes in urban area roads. Is this possible ? We stay in a small galli where a lot of rainwater accumulates during the rain and and then simply evaporates. Can we send it for groundwater recharge? Is it only possible for newly constru...
    Anonymous (not verified)posted 12 months 4 days agoread more
  • Hello, I have a roof top terrace garden that I have tended to for many months now. I don't use any chemicals for the plants and the only addition to the soil is compost once in a few months. Is it okay to harvest rain water from the same place where I have this garden? I was adviced by one person ...
    Schimmandaposted 1 year 2 weeks agoread more
  • The Israeli water industry is one of the best in the world, and this is because of the country’s breakthrough in technological innovations in areas like desalination, drip irrigation and water security. The country uses its water so sustainably that since 1964, its total water consumption has rema...
    swatiposted 1 year 2 weeks agoread more
  • The water scarcity that India is facing even before the onslaught of summers, and the plight of farmer’s in Marathwada have been making headlines every single day. Our water problems have been exacerbated by climate change, rapid development, increasing energy demands and unmindful, extravagant us...
    sabitakaushalposted 1 year 2 weeks agoread more
  • Hello  I need some help to design a filter for roof top rain water harvesting. The water catching area is 100 sqm, and the rainfall maximum is 130 mm, and so the filter should have the capacity to filter 216 liters/min. I have a 4'' down pipe installed, while the storage area is...
    Sahana raoposted 1 year 2 weeks agoread more
  • Centre releases DPR on forestry intervention for Ganga river The Water Resource Ministry has unveiled the Detailed Project Report (DPR) on Forestry Intervention for the Ganga which has been prepared by the Forest Research Institute, Dehradun. The project envisages the plantation of 4 crore native t...
    swatiposted 1 year 4 weeks agoread more
  • Hi, I am looking for people who can help me with groundwater recharge solutions in Karnataka. Can you please help with the contact numbers of concerned persons? Thanks Deepu  
    Anonymous (not verified)posted 1 year 1 month agoread more
  • Sirkoo, a 39 year old woman in Bundelkhand, Uttar Pradesh, walked 8 km every day to fetch water. As a woman, it was obviously her responsibility to ensure the household's water availability. This put an additional stress on her already depleted health as well as time--until she decided to tackl...
    sabitakaushalposted 1 year 1 month agoread more
  • It was 1961. Simon Oraon, a Class IV school drop-out began his journey against drought in Bedo, a tribal block of Ranchi, Jharkhand. An idealistic young man, he along with his fellow villagers began constructing earthen dams to capture rainwater for recharging groundwater. This along with his broade...
    Amita Bhaduriposted 1 year 1 month agoread more
  • The East Coast of India is very much unlike its western counterpart both in terms of physiography and climatology. Unlike the West Coast which receives a predictable amount of rainfall within a predictable time frame, the East Coast is entirely dependent on the depressions in the Bay of Bengal to br...
    seetha@indiawat...posted 1 year 2 months agoread more
  • Erratic rainfall, heavy storms, extreme weather and droughts are some of the major impacts of climate changes. Though it affects everyone, certain sections of society, like indigenous people who live closer to the natural environment, are in fact more vulnerable to these variations. However, they ar...
    sabitakaushalposted 1 year 2 months agoread more

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This book by Shri Anupam Mishra documents the life and work of individuals and communities across India, in setting up water harvesting and management systems through talaabs (lakes / tanks).

In Aaj Bhi Khare Hain Talaab, Shri Anupam Mishra documents the life and work of several individuals and communities, across the country, in setting up water harvesting and management systems through talaabs (lakes / tanks).

These traditional water bodies are the lifeline of many villages and towns in the country even today. Their work serves as a guide, in organising to face and tackle the current water crisis in the country.

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An analysis by IMD proves that rainwater harvesting is the best way to overcome the continuous dry spells the country witnesses.

A recent analysis by the Indian Meteorological Department (IMD) determined the rooftop rainwater harvesting potential of the districts in Maharashtra in a year by calculating the average amount of rainwater in litres that can be caught over one square foot roof area. Head of IMD’s Climate Application Group, Dr Pulak Guhathakurta spoke to India Water Portal on the findings of the

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The holy city of Ujjain is dealing with severe water and sanitation issues. A study reveals serious anomalies in the WASH situation in the city.

Despite all the hype around Swachh Bharat Mission, the situation on the ground remains abysmal. The city of Ujjain is located on the western part of Madhya Pradesh on the Malwa Plateau and is primarily a religious tourism centre due to the Mahakal temple. The temple is not only one of the 12 jyotirlingas in India but also has prominence as the location for the Simhastha Kumbh Mela every 12 years.

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Dear IWP

I live in a gated community with over 200 villas. We s a community are very conscious of our environment and practice Rain water harvesting, composting of waste, tree planting etc. However recently some members have started promoting RO treatment for the entire water supplied to the community through our water supply system.

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One of the temple ponds of Kooram, neglected for years, has been revived by well-meaning citizens.

For hundreds of years, tanks, both big and small, served people and cattle alike in Tamil Nadu. Chennai’s neighbouring district of Kancheepuram was the the wealthiest when it came to water through these means. The Chola and Pallava kings, along with various other major and minor royal houses of the time, dug out massive irrigation tanks or eris, as they are known locally, to support agriculture in a terrain fed by seasonal rains.

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Hello

I live in Bhimtal, Uttarakhand. We are in process of finalizing a design for our cafe. Since we are constructing afresh, we would like to do it right and imbibe a rainwater harvesting system in the construction. The architect has been chosen and the final capacity will depend on the area of construction. It rains 1670mm annually, on an average.

I would like to know if there is a provision of subsidy from the government for installing rainwater harvesting in the property; and how to go about applying for it.

Regards

Akanksha Bumb

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December 14, 2016 9:30AM

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Hello

There is filter from my terrace to an open well for RWH. My terrace also holds my vegetable garden. The organic fertilizers from the garden can make the water impure, and I have been advised to remove the vegetable garden from my terrace. However, I want terrace vegetable garden and rainwater harvesting go hand in hand. Could you share some expert advise on this?

Thanks

Binu Joseph

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Citizens come forward to restore polluted lakes and rivers in their cities. They demand support and swift action from the government.

The pitiful state of some of the water bodies in the country, coupled with the sheer apathy of the government, have forced some well-meaning citizens to come out of their comfort zones and make a difference. Some of these efforts, like the Puttenahalli lake in Bengaluru that is now overflowing with clean water, have been successful, while others are ongoing. Here, we feature some stories of a few Good Samaritans and their efforts to restore the lakes and rivers of their cities.

Udaipur lakes

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The hill forts of Maharashtra provide valuable lessons in water harvesting and conservation.

In the olden times, people knew the importance of water and had devised a number of techniques to manage and conserve water resources. These efforts not only met the drinking water needs of the people, but also helped the survival of livestock and agriculture in areas where perennial rivers were absent and the population depended on rains and often faced water scarcity or droughts.

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