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Rainwater Harvesting and the Economy

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Rainwater Harvesting holds many benefits for individual citizens as well as communities and governments. The benefits aren't just about water conservation but also extend to many socio-economic reasons that explain why Rainwater harvesting is essential.

Rainwater Harvesting is an integrated water-cycle management approach and a few of its economic benefits include:

Reduction in potable water demand

A well-designed rainwater harvesting system can save up to 60,000 litres of water in a year. This implies that the household can reduce its dependence on the city water supply by such a significant amount every year thus saving them plenty of money. A simple filter system can remove large particles and a RO system can further purify the water for usage inside the home. The water that is filtered can be used for cleaning and washing purposes and the RO water can be used for cooking purposes.

Reduce flooding

During intense monsoon seasons, the storm water is drained into the rivers, lakes or wetland systems in the city. But many a times there are instances of these systems being unable to handle the excess of water. Surrounding areas experience floods that causes excessive economic and social damage. The rainwater system assists is storing rainwater before letting the excess run off to the storm drain system thus reducing the pressure on the water bodies.

Climate Change resilient

In situations of both flood and drought the rainwater harvesting system is the most resilient approach to tackle the climatic changes we are experiencing. By reducing flooding and allowing for long term storage of water, it helps residents fight the vagaries of the monsoon season. It is very difficult to predict the weather these days. Monsoons are not restricted to a single season and sometimes the monsoons are failing. But if we have a rainwater harvesting system, water can be collected throughout the year and stored for use later. The traditional water supply systems unfortunately are completely governed by the vagaries of weather making them unreliable with the current climatic change.

Educational Tool

Rainwater harvesting is a great educational tool to make people understand how they are using water in their household. This helps them identify areas where water consumption can be reduced thus eventually teaching the family to be more prudent in water usage. This also helps families understand the process of recycling water either through treatment plants or other simpler conservation methods.

Cheaper than the traditional water system

Traditional water systems pipe water to the cities from rivers and lakes through elaborate systems and also in many cases require the construction of dams and sub-reservoirs in order to capture the water from the natural resources. If instead each household creates its own water management system through rainwater harvesting this expensive method of bringing in water to the cities can be avoided.

Cities are growing today and if we cannot provide a way for a basic need like water to be met then our cities will slowly empty out. Economic development and growth can happen only when people have liveable conditions in the cities and the most essential requirement for this is water. Rainwater harvesting creates a self-sustainable system at a low cost to ensure that there is year long water supply. Adoption of this system is crucial not just for the residents' comfort but to also ensure non-stop economic growth of the city.

Research and Concept by A.R. Shivakumar
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