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.

  • Yamuna pollution stays the same, despite a drop in sewage flow Per the Environment Ministry’s Annual Report (2014-15), although there is a decline in the discharge of sewage water into the Yamuna in the last year, the water quality continues to deteriorate. The reason attributed behind the unchan...
    swatiposted 2 years 7 months agoread more
  • Centre presents an opposite picture in the Uttarakhand dam case With respect to the six specific hydroelectric projects on the upper Ganga basin in Uttarakhand, the Environment Ministry had informed the Supreme Court that experts have given a clean chit to the six dams and that the latter can also ...
    swatiposted 2 years 11 months agoread more
  • The Himalayas, an important part of the geography of India, extend along the entire Northern and North-Eastern boundary of the country. It spans six Indian States namely, Jammu and Kashmir, Himachal Pradesh, Uttaranchal, West Bengal, Sikkim and a major part of Arunachal Pradesh from west to east. T...
    aarti kelkar kh...posted 2 years 11 months agoread more
  • Indian Water Works Association in collaboration with Indian Institute of Technology, Bombay, Municipal Corporation of Greater Mumbai and SGGS Institute of Engineering and Technology, Nanded is orgainising a national seminar on 'Water Conservation and Rainwater Harvesting' at IIT Bombay. For more de...
    swatiposted 2 years 11 months agoread more
  • 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 11 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 11 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 3 years 3 days 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 3 years 2 weeks 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 3 years 2 weeks 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 3 years 1 month 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 3 years 1 month 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 3 years 1 month 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 3 years 2 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 3 years 2 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 3 years 2 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 3 years 3 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 3 years 3 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 3 years 3 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 3 years 4 months agoread more
  • I am constructing a house and I need details regarding rain water harvesting for it. Thanks, Ashwathanarayana  
    Anonymous (not verified)posted 3 years 4 months agoread more

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An NGO’s effort to recharge the groundwater in an area finds little success with water-guzzling crops that rule the market.

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 crises? Unfortunately, the answers are not so easy to find. 

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How an arid, saline land where migration in search of water and jobs was a way of life, boasts of plenty of water now.

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, groundwater extraction is rampant even as agriculture remains the main source of income.

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Maharashtra government withdraws plea against ban on construction on wetlands  

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Pipara village in the parched Bundelkhand region stands out for its uninterrupted water supply. The village has their women to thank for it.

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. 

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Rural India walks too far to quench their thirst

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Tonk Khurd’s innovative farm ponds prove that when it comes to solving water crisis, one size does not fit all.

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.

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Nanduwali in east Rajasthan started flowing again when the villagers decided to work with nature and not against it. The river is now lifeline to those settled on her banks

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 from his knowledge of astrology, but that of geology, gained over the years.

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Only 40 percent treatable land has been covered by various government programmes. It calls for better planning.

With two consecutively weak monsoons, this summer is particularly difficult for India. Around 330 million people across 10 states are affected by the drought.

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Data shows Haryana has done better than its parent state, but the positives are getting lost as both states clamour for 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 it the Cauvery in the south or the Yamuna in the north.

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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 constructed roads? Can the existing roads also use any possibilty to recharge groundwater?

Thanks

Yogita

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