WHAT IS RAINWATER HARVESTING?
Rainwater harvesting is the accumulation and
deposition of rainwater for reuse before it reaches
the aquifer. Uses include water for garden, water for
livestock, water for irrigation, and indoor heating
for houses etc. In many places the water collected is
just redirected to a deep pit with percolation. The
harvested water can be used as drinking water as well
as for storage and other purpose like irrigation.
Rainwater harvesting provides an independent water
supply during regional water restrictions and in
developed countries is often used to supplement the
main supply. It provides water when there is a
drought, can help mitigate flooding of low-lying
areas, and reduces demand on wells which may enable
ground water levels to be sustained. It also helps in
the availability of potable water as rainwater is
substantially free of salinity and other salts.
The concentration of contaminants is reduced
significantly by diverting the initial flow of runoff water to waste. Improved water quality can also be obtained by using a floating draw-off mechanism
(rather than from the base of the tank) and by using
a series of tanks, with draw from the last in series.
The stored rainwater may need to be analysed properly
before use in a way appropriate to ensure its safe
The quality of collected rainwater is generally
better than that of surface water. Contamination is
always possible by airborne dust and mists, bird
feces, and other debris, so some treatment may be
necessary, depending on how the water will be used.
Rainwater harvesting systems can be installed with
minimal skills. The system should be sized to meet
the water demand throughout the dry season since it
must be big enough to support daily water
consumption. Specifically, the rainfall capturing
area such as a building roof must be large enough to
maintain adequate flow. The water...
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