WHAT IS RAINWATER HARVESTING?

Water is an important natural resource and the need of water is very necessary for organisms to live. It is very important for human survival and existence. We use water for drinking,
irrigation, industry, transport and for the production of hydro-electricity. Water is a cyclic resource which
can be used again and again after cleaning. The best way to conserve water is its rational use and more accumulation of water from rainfall.

Rain water harvesting:

Rain water harvesting is one of the most effective methods of water management and water conservation. It is the term used to indicate the collection and storage of rain water used for human, animals and plant needs. It involves collection and storage of rain water at surface or in sub-surface aquifer, before it is lost as surface run off.

Needs of rain water harvesting :

1. To overcome the inadequacy of surface water to meet the demands of people. 
2. To stop the declination in ground water levels. 
3. To enhance availability of ground water at specific place and time and utilize rain water for sustainable development.
4. To increase infiltration of rain water in the subsoil this has decreased drastically in urban areas due to paving of open area. 
5. To improve ground water quality by dilution. 
6. To increase agriculture production. 
7. To improve ecology of the area by increase in vegetation cover etc.

Advantages of rain water harvesting :

1. The cost of recharge to sub-surface reservoir is lower than surface reservoirs. 
2. The aquifer serves as a distribution system also. 
3. No land is wasted for storage purpose and no population displacement is involved. 
4. Ground water is not directly exposed to evaporation and pollution. 
5. Storing water under ground is environment friendly. 
6. It increases the productivity of aquifer. 
7. It reduces flood hazards. 
8. It increases the ground water levels. 
9. It mitigates effects of drought. 
10. It reduces soil erosion.

Methods and Techniques: 

The methods of ground water recharge mainly are: 
In urban Areas: Roof top rain water/storm runoff harvesting through 
(i) Recharge Pit 
(ii) Recharge Trench 
(iii) Tubewell 
(iv) Recharge Well 

In rural Areas: Rain water harvesting through 
(i) Gully Plug 
(ii) Contour Bund 
(iii) Gabion Structure 
(iv) Percolation Tank 
(v) Check Dam/Cement Plug/Nala Bund 
(vi) Recharge Shaft 
(vii) Dugwell Recharge 
(viii) Ground Water Dams/Subsurface Dyke

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