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.

Featured Articles
July 23, 2021 Improper location, poor operation and maintenance of water harvesting and recharge structures threaten water security in Yavatmal
A study assesses the current status of the water harvesting and recharge structures in Yavatmal (Image: India Water Portal Flickr)
July 12, 2021 India Water Portal presents you with some inspiring stories of individuals and organisations in India that have adopted exemplary ways to combat water scarcity through harvesting rainwater.
Catch the rain where it falls (Source: IWP Flickr Photos)
March 22, 2021 Beating odds, women water warriors deepen their work on water
Rural women believe in the power of ‘water continuity’ or having sustained and intergenerational access to water resources (Image: Romit Sen)
February 24, 2021 Baravas, the unique water harvesting structures of Maharashtra continue to stand the test of time. Urgent efforts need to be made to conserve them and learn from them!
A barav from Limb village in Satara district, Maharashtra (Image Source: Aarti Kelkar Khambete)
January 2, 2021 Lack of community ownership and local governance are spelling doom for the once royal and resilient traditional water harvesting structures of Rajasthan.
Toorji Ka Jhalara, Jodhpur (Image Source: Rituja Mitra)
December 29, 2020 Water resources in most Indian cities are overworked and overused, and not adequately replenished.
Cities in India are marked by unequal distribution of water, lack of access, outdated infrastructure and minimal enforcement of rainwater harvesting and other means of supply. (Image: Anish Roy, Pixabay)
Harvesting and using rainwater, a must in Bengaluru
Policy matters this fortnight Swati Bansal posted 1 day 10 hours ago

State government makes harvesting and using of rainwater a must in Bengaluru

Rainwater harvesting installed in a house (Source: IWP Flickr photos)
Revival of Dohas in tribal Madhya Pradesh
Nala widening and deepening to increase water storage and recharge capacity of the stream Amita Bhaduri posted 2 weeks 2 days ago

The most important precondition to make farming profitable for small and marginal tribal farmers residing in undulating terrains

Dohas constructed in a stream in Dindori district. (Image: Action for Social Advancement)
Lift irrigation cooperatives provide irrigation to tribal drylands
Existing government schemes and programmes offer good potential for scale-up these cooperatives in various states Amita Bhaduri posted 2 weeks 3 days ago

The earliest known civilizations settled around rivers as they provided access to the water needed for cultivating crops. Over time, humans learnt to control the flow of water by the construction of barriers across the direction of the river flow.

Simalaghasi check dam across Panam river, Dahod constructed by NM Sadguru Water and Development Foundation (Image: NM Sadguru Water and Development Foundation)
Reviving traditional water harvesting structures
A CSO-led holistic tank rehabilitation initiative launched in 2017 to restore the Chandela and Bundela tanks to their ancient glory Amita Bhaduri posted 4 weeks 2 days ago

150 years ago, no government system anywhere in the world was responsible for water supply.

Kishanpura tank, Tikamgarh district, Madhya Pradesh (Image: Strategy document BIWAL)
Nainital’s water woes: Every drop of rain counts
Nainital, a burgeoning hill town with a huge growing population is faced with water supply issues. Adoption of the practice of rainwater harvesting can lead to a paradigm shift towards better utilisation of the town’s natural water resources. Amita Bhaduri posted 1 month 1 week ago

Nainital, the jewel of Uttarakhand’s Kumaun region is one of the most popular tourist destinations in northern India.

Naini lake, a natural freshwater body, quenches the thirst of the town (Image: Sanjay Bora)
World Bank to provide $250 million to ensure dam safety in India
Policy matters this fortnight Swati Bansal posted 1 month 2 weeks ago

World Bank will provide $250 million for dam safety in India

Malampuzha dam in Kerala (Image source: IWP Flickr Photos)
Empowering women to be water stewards
Women work on demystifying technologies in a remote Rajasthan village Amita Bhaduri posted 1 month 2 weeks ago

In June 2021, UNDP felicitated 41 Women Water Champions for their remarkable contributions to water-conservation efforts in the country.

Gayatri's efforts helped women get together and work on water management for the well being of a community (Image: Foundation for Ecological Security)
Requirement of rainwater harvesting pit
(not verified) posted 1 month 2 weeks ago

I am a resident of Ashiana Society in North Delhi. Residents of society have built a rainwater harvesting pit. Can I get support in designing the pit, i.e what would be size of the pit, location of pit and various other factors to be considered for construction of the pit.

Thanks

Odisha's Puri becomes first city in the country to have safe water under Jal Jeevan Mission (Urban)
News this fortnight Swati Bansal posted 1 month 3 weeks ago

Odisha’s Puri first city in the country to provide safe drinking water while

Functional tap water supply to end rural water woes (Image source: IWP Flickr Photos)
Yavatmal’s water security crisis
Improper location, poor operation and maintenance of water harvesting and recharge structures threaten water security in Yavatmal Amita Bhaduri posted 2 months ago

Water security in  Yavatmal district could be at risk if steps are not taken to revive and renovate water harvesting and recharge structures according to a study by Institute for Sustainable Communities (ISC).

A study assesses the current status of the water harvesting and recharge structures in Yavatmal (Image: India Water Portal Flickr)
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