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.

  • Garudeshwar dam: for a statue or for people?The dam in Gujarat's Bharuch district will act as downstream storage for the Sardar Sarovar project which means it can't be used for irrigation, flood control or even net power generation.However, it will create a reservoir around the 'Statue of Unity' pro...
    ravleenposted 3 years 10 months agoread more
  • This simple guide lists out the most popular questions related to rainwater harvesting to help understand this important topic better.Please click on a topic to view more detailed information.What is Rainwater Harvesting (RWH)?Who can practice RWH?Why should I implement RWH?Where can RWH be implemen...
    sabitakaushalposted 3 years 10 months agoread more
  • More power, but no water security to MP and Gujarat, observes SANDRPThe weekly reservoir level updates of the Central Water Commission (CWC) has shown a drastic depletion of water levels in the Sardar Sarovar Project and Indira Sagar Project on the Narmada river. The prime reason for this ...
    swatiposted 3 years 10 months agoread more
  • Govt to increase irrigation potential by 10%The move is cut down reliance on monsoon rain which sustains agriculture on 50% of the farmland in the country, says A B Pandya, chairman of the Central Water Commission. As of now, 97 million hectares of land is under irrigationHimachal dam protesters cha...
    ravleenposted 3 years 10 months agoread more
  • Steep fall in water table worries Tamil NaduGround water level has fallen sharply even in Coimbatore and Theni, the districts abutting the forested Western Ghats region. Across the state, water table has fallen by 0.5 metres to 2.3 metres in the last one yearWater level in Narmada dams hits record l...
    ravleenposted 3 years 10 months agoread more
  • Marathwada on a suicide spree, again After last year's drought, it is the hailstorm in February this year which led to large scale crop destruction. 73 farmers have committed suicide since then even as the numbers keep growingWorld Bank rejects loan for Himachal hydro projectThe Bank dropped th...
    ravleenposted 3 years 10 months agoread more
  • Piped water only for 40% of the middle classOnly 15% of the middle class, households with an annual income above Rs. 88,800, get about three hours of water supply says the latest data from National Council for Applied Economic ResearchLow rainfall in Western Ghats means less water for citiesRainfall...
    ravleenposted 3 years 10 months agoread more
  • Delhi prone to floods: IPCCThe Yamuna River floodplains need to be kept free as buffer zones to absorb the damage due to extreme weather events, says the latest report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. The report also says Mumbai and Kolkata prone to coastal floodingPower everywhere ...
    ravleenposted 3 years 10 months agoread more
  • People from all walks of life, villagers, NGOs, govt officials and water experts participated in the World Water Day celebration in Mewat that was organised by the S M Sehgal Foundation, a rural development NGO working in the district.Mewat is a dry region, thanks to absence of surface water, increa...
    ravleenposted 3 years 10 months agoread more
  • Himalayan glaciers could lose two-third mass by 2100The International Panel on Climate Change says this may hit India’s food security system andalso bring changes in the monsoon pattern. Famine, water shortage and regional conflicts are also expected in South Asia, especially IndiaWater in Ludhian...
    ravleenposted 3 years 10 months agoread more
  • Abolish manual scavenging: SCThe Court said entering sewer lines without safety gears should be made a crime and that safai karamchari women should be provided support for dignified livelihoodSow short duration crops: GovtThe Union Agriculture Ministry has suggested farmers sow short and medium dura...
    ravleenposted 3 years 10 months agoread more
  • Thermal power plants India's biggest water guzzling industryMost of the older generation thermal plants in India use open loop–wet cooling systems which accounts for 40-80 times more water use than the world average. These plants constitute 88% of the total industrial water demand in the countryIn...
    ravleenposted 3 years 10 months agoread more
  • Hello,We are a community of 164 households in Okkiyam Thoraipakkam, Chennai. Our community is known as Trinity Park. Currently we source water from outside, as the groundwater is unusable. We are collectively looking for a rainwater harvesting solution to improve the groundwater quality.We need help...
    Anonymous (not verified)posted 3 years 10 months agoread more
  • Climate change poses a threat to all. Be it forests, water or agriculture- it affects everything. India's Northeast, particularly, has witnessed a great deal of this impact. Sikkim, the physical bridge between the Northeast and mainland India, is also bearing the brunt of climate change in a myriad ...
    Usha Dewaniposted 3 years 10 months agoread more
  • Average rainfall in different districts for the period 1992-2010
    iwpsuperadminposted 3 years 10 months agoread more
  • Abolish manual scavenging: SCThe Supreme Court has ordered all states to abolish manual scavenging and undertake measures to rehabilitate manual scavengers. It has also directed the states to pay a compensation of Rs.10 lakh each to the family of manual scavengers who have died while enter...
    swatiposted 3 years 10 months agoread more
  • As a run up to World Water Day 2014, India Water Portal conducted a Grassroots Comics workshop with Field Facilitators, Barefoot Engineers and other field workers of the Dhara Vikas Programme. The Programme is an initiative of the Government of Sikkim through its Rural Management and Development Dep...
    Usha Dewaniposted 3 years 10 months agoread more
  • Chennai's water warriors Sekhar Raghvan and Indukant Ragade believe that rainwater harvesting and greywater recycling are simple steps to achieve water sufficiency. To educate tomorrow’s engineers and town planners to understand and appreciate the importance of these two measures, India Water Port...
    Seethaposted 3 years 10 months agoread more
  • India may become water scarce by 2020: ReportBusinesses in the country are underestimating water-related risks as depletion and pollution threaten to deprive millions of safe drinking water and stifle economic growth, says a study report by the Carbon Disclosure ProjectHimachalis want policies again...
    ravleenposted 3 years 10 months agoread more
  • Most tourist brochures of ‘God’s own country’ Kerala, show off the beautiful beaches and backwaters of Kovalam and Alleppey. The state is also home to both the Northeast and Southwest monsoon receiving an average rainfall of 3000 mm annually (contrast that with around 1000 mm in neighbouring T...
    Seethaposted 3 years 11 months agoread more

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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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Hi,

I am building a house on 30x40 plot in Bangalore. I have made the provision for storing rain water which is approximately 30,000 liters. I want to harvest the grey water as well. I want to reuse only the water from the kitchen and washing machine. We are a family of 4 including a 3 years old kid. Is it worth considering grey water harvesting? If yes, what is the storage capacity required? What should happen when the grey storage tank overflows? Can someone please send me the design?

Thanks, Shishir Thalner

 

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About WET 2016
VIKSAT announces the next batch of the WASH Educators Training (WET 2016). This batch is particularly for the Institutions/applicants from the western eco-regions of India working on issues related to Water, Sanitation and Hygiene (WASH). The training is directed towards creating and nurturing a cadre of young educators for better understanding of water and WASH issues.

February 24, 2016 10:00AM - March 4, 2016 7:00AM
January 15, 2016 11:45PM

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Lalit Mohan Sharma of Sehgal Foundation, Gurgaon speaks to India Water Portal about innovative solutions to sail through Mewat's water crisis.

What is the exact problem as regards groundwater salinity, fluoride and water scarcity in Mewat, Haryana? Is the area underlain with saline groundwater aquifers? What is the status of surface water in the area? Can it not reduce dependence on groundwater?

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Yet to recover from the torrential lashing, the low-lying city of Chennai is slowly piecing its life back together. How ironic for a state that was a pioneer in rainwater harvesting.

Chennai has historically been a water-starved region, but never rain-starved as it receives much of its annual quota during the northeast or ‘retreating’ monsoon between October and December. But this November was like no other. 

The water level in Tamil Nadu for the week ending 11.11.2015 was 124.4mm, as against the norm of 49.3mm, a departure of nearly 152 percent. Chennai recorded a massive 239mm rainfall as against the expected 88.5mm, 170 percent more than usual [1].

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