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.

  • As the race to bridge the gap between limited water availability and increasing demand for water narrows in India, rain water harvesting has been increasingly recommended in urban areas to harness the available water, rather than relying on expensive and unsustainable means of procuring water.  ...
    aarti kelkar kh...posted 2 years 5 months agoread more
  • Dear India Water Portal, We need help to implement a water harvesting project in our colony Kakkanad, Ernakulam, Kerala at least cost. Can you please help? Thanks
    Anonymous (not verified)posted 2 years 5 months agoread more
  • Several lakhs of farming communities in Tamil Nadu depend on the 39,202 tanks spread around the state. These tanks capture the runoff water from the monsoon rainfall that occurs in a short span of time, and also provide water for irrigation and other uses for the community. However, these water bod...
    aarti kelkar kh...posted 2 years 6 months agoread more
  • Despite its shrinking greens, Delhi has significant tree diversity. Pradip Krishen, a naturalist, author and filmmaker, identifies around 250 tree species in the concrete jungle, in his book titled ‘Trees of Delhi’ published in 2007. But these trees do not have the breathing room they need ...
    Amita Bhaduriposted 2 years 6 months agoread more
  • Big sandstone hills cover the landscape dotted by little grass, while the land below is covered with Israeli babool (akesia tortlis), an invasive species which does not let any other vegetation grow. Amidst this, Baadi village with its lush green fields full of cabbage, pepper and groundnut seems ou...
    Manu Moudgilposted 2 years 6 months agoread more
  • Recent news has been flooded with reports of the severe drought situation in the Marathwada and Vidarbha regions of Maharashtra. Even more shocking are the reports of large-scale suicides by farmers due to crop losses. Although the government has announced a relief package for drought-affected area...
    aarti kelkar kh...posted 2 years 7 months agoread more
  • Water connects food and religion. Religious ceremonies often involve taking a dip in a water body, and any food or meal is incomplete without water. The same two things - food and religion - stand out in Bikaner. While hot kachoris and samosas line street stalls, Mata Karni Devi and Baba Ramdev (not...
    Manu Moudgilposted 2 years 7 months agoread more
  • The word 'Theertham' literally means ‘water’ but in Hindu mythology, it is usually the physical holy water body associated with a temple or deity. Rameshwaram has 64 such theerthams. 22 of these are believed to be sacred and are within the premises of the Sri Ramanathaswamy temple. Bathing...
    Anonymous (not verified)posted 2 years 7 months agoread more
  • A drop in available water for irrigation is one of the important challenges that countries will face in the coming years. This could create a severe impact on agriculture and food production. This threat is far more serious in countries such as India due to the rapid growth in population as well as ...
    aarti kelkar kh...posted 2 years 8 months agoread more
  • NGT turns down clearance to Cuddalore thermal plant because of threat to mangroves The National Green Tribunal has turned down green clearance to the 3600 MW thermal power plant in Tamil Nadu’s Cuddalore district. The decision was taken due to the plant's impact on the marine life and the Pichava...
    swatiposted 2 years 8 months agoread more
  • Kerala's Ashtamudi lake recognised for sustainable clam fishing Ashtamudi lake, the second largest estuarine system in Kerala and a livelihood support of 3000 fisherfolk who trade clams, has become India's first Marine Stewardship Council-certified fishery. When faced with crisis of reduced catch d...
    aarti kelkar kh...posted 2 years 8 months agoread more
  • Chitradurga district in southern Karnataka is infamous for drought. People here constantly suffer from water shortage and in the last few years, the problem has escalated due to poor rainfall.  "The continuous drilling of bore wells in and around Chitradurga doesn't help either", says Devaraja...
    Divya Nposted 2 years 9 months agoread more
  • Hudhud lands in Vizag at 195 kmph Cyclone Hudhud has struck the coastal districts of Andhra Pradesh and Odisha at a speed of 195 kmph, bringing with it heavy rain and winds. The cyclone has caused severe damage to Visakhapatnam and has claimed 21 lives in Andhra Pradesh. Over 4 lakh people have bee...
    Anonymous (not verified)posted 2 years 9 months agoread more
  • Dear India Water Portal, We are looking forward to implementing rainwater harvesting system in our society at Thane, Maharashtra. We would be grateful if you could help us with the same. Thankyou
    Anonymous (not verified)posted 2 years 9 months agoread more
  • We have an existing bore well and the yield has come down. Can you suggest methods for deepening? The people at hyderabad who do it are experts, but still the water is trickling. We are also trying to put water recharging pits. Thanks
    Anonymous (not verified)posted 2 years 10 months agoread more
  • I am constructing a house and I need details regarding rain water harvesting for it. Thanks, Ashwathanarayana  
    Anonymous (not verified)posted 2 years 10 months agoread more
  • Located at an altitude of 1270 metres , Kikruma, a quaint village nestled in a rainshadowed area of Phek district of Nagaland is a wonder. Centuries ago, the village evolved a self-organizing system to take care of its water, forest and farm management. ‘Zabo’, which means 'impounding water', is...
    Usha Dewaniposted 2 years 11 months agoread more
  • In the last five decades, Indore, in Madhya Pradesh, has witnessed a substantial increase in urbanisation and industrialisation. Its population has also increased from 5,60,936 in 1971 to 2,167,447 in 2011 (Census 2011). This increase has resulted in an increased demand for water, aggravating the wa...
    makarandpurohitposted 2 years 11 months agoread more
  • Kaladera, a small village about 40 km from Jaipur has always been known for its chaubandi (mud resist printing) and natural dyeing but it has been getting a lot of attention since 1999. No, it's not because of the handicraft but because of Coca Cola, which set up a bottling plant there. Soon af...
    Amita Bhaduriposted 2 years 12 months agoread more
  • Sukhomajri village has long been a reminder of people's participation in ecological preservation and in turn, greater economic good. The small village in Panchkula district of Haryana changed its fortunes when it entered into joint forest management with the help of the Chandigarh-based Central So...
    Manu Moudgilposted 3 years 1 day agoread more

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Policy matters this week

Centre releases DPR on forestry intervention for Ganga river

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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

 

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Women are not only responsible for water but they also face the brunt of water scarcity. Watch the video to find out what happens when these women become 'Jal Sahelis' (water friends).

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 tackle the issue head on.

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Simon Oraon, leading a people’s movement to save water and forests in Ranchi, Jharkhand

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 broader work on self-initiated environmental and forest protection systems provided a tipping point that rejuvenated the forests and brought the wells and surface water bodies back to life.

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While the monster floods of 2015 mercilessly gobbled up villages along the coast of Tamil Nadu, settlements in neighbouring Puducherry managed to escape the fury. Miracle, you say?

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 bring in the much needed rain. Due to the absence of a set pattern and the erratic nature of rainfall, the engineers of ancient times came up with a fool-proof solution – constructing tanks to hold the water.

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Farmers have been known to observe the movement of ants and butterflies to forecast rainfall. Do such indigenous practices hold the key to addressing climate change issues?

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 are also the first to observe, identify and formulate required strategies to adapt to climate change. This wisdom, insight and knowledge of local people is termed as indigenous technical knowledge (ITK).

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About the programme:

The training programe will include interactive sessions with leading experts/practitioners, presentation on case studies, and visit to successfully implemented RWH and DWWT systems in CSE campus. The participants will get the opportunity to plan and design the sustainable urban water management (SUWM) systems as part of ‘Do It Yourself ‘- group exercise. 

Who can apply?

February 23, 2016 9:00AM - February 26, 2016 6:00PM

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Inspite of Dehradun being declared as an Ecologically Sensitive Zone 30 years ago, we couldn’t safeguard its fragility. Will the so called 'Smart City Plan' by UHUDA really help?

The Babur Nama mentions that the “the finest running water in Hindustan is that in the Dun.” The expanse of the va

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The city's old wells and baodis are running dry, and the Yamuna is getting more polluted by the day. Where is Delhi's water going to come from when groundwater levels are also dropping?

Delhi, home to 16.75 million people, is in the grip of a major water crisis. Statistics by the Delhi Jal Board for the year 2011 suggest that the water deficit stands at about 250 million gallons per day with the supply being 830 million gallons per day. Unaccounted for water--the gap between the water produced and distributed--is as high as 40-45%.

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Rice-fish systems allow for the production of fish and other aquatic animals as well as rice from the same rice field area, and generally without causing reductions in rice yields.

Coastal regions of Kendrapara and Jagatsinghpur districts of Odisha have been hit by cyclonic storms for more than two decades. These have severely affected the livelihood of the communities living in the region. Ashok Das of Junapangara village is one such farmer who had suffered massive agricultural losses. He owned around two acres of land, including homestead land, with a pond. With a wife, two daughters and a son to support, he gave up agriculture in 2011 and took up the job of a labourer.

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