Learn why rainwater harvesting is important | how to get started | how to get it right

Learn why Rainwater Harvesting is Important | How to get started | how to get it right

rainwater harvesting

Use water from rain or snowfall to recharge your water supply. What rainwater harvesting does to your water supply is give you water you didn’t have before. All you have to do is store it, for a rainy day. Then at the first drop in your stream you have water you weren’t going to have before. That’s pretty powerful. It can change the future of your watershed.

Make water harvesting your choice, especially for environmental reasons.

Better manage and control water – such as our water basins and watersheds – in a better way than before, because you have the water that’s below the ground.

Find and use resources from farmers, entrepreneurs, municipalities and landowners for harvesting rainwater.

Protect watersheds: support your watersheds by watering your lawn using rainwater harvested in your yard.

Share your own water harvesting photos with us. We’ll publish some of your photos, creating a fun water-culture community resource for years to come!

View the Water-Bonsai Index’s interactive map to find the water sources and farmers who are harvesting water.

How you can start harvesting rainwater

Here are some of the things you can do to harvest rainwater:

Water your garden in the spring, especially your lawn.

Use rainwater for irrigation. Rainwater watering is more practical and efficient than using wells and traditional irrigation systems.

Water your house in the summer. The rainwater will come in around 4-6 pm. All you have to do is connect it to the drain or downspout.

Use rainwater for recycling. Collected water from your roof can be used for washing cars, plants or pools and can also be dried and used for watering your lawn.

Learn more about the science of water harvesting.

Find other ways to harvest water – such as storing rainwater in containers.

Learn more about the benefits of harvesting rainwater and reduce the need to use our limited supply.

Agencies and organizations that collect, monitor and store water in your watershed:

Sources and Benefits of Rainwater Harvesting for Conservation

Rainwater harvesting helps your watershed. In general, rainwater is cleaner and safer than most tap water. Rainwater can be used for outdoor irrigation, flushing toilets, cleaning, washing your car or garden, or filling and heating your home. If you have water sources nearby, then rainwater harvesting can be a low-cost way to help recharge your water supply. Rainwater is especially useful when you have water sources nearby but you’re struggling with water shortages. Resources for improving water quality are scarce and water scarcity is increasing. It’s easy to forget that water harvesting is a natural, environmentally friendly solution to drought.

Our water sources are diminished and even depleted by the growing demand of our growing population.

More than half of our planet’s water resources are already under crisis management.

Our supplies of water are limited. The world is currently at 6.3 trillion gallons of water compared to a previous peak of 6.4 trillion gallons in the late 1980s.

The United States is in the midst of a major drought.

Over 40% of our regions suffer from water shortages.

One-third of our water supplies are used for agriculture.

Less than 1% of the rainwater is collected for water conservation and use for our purposes.

Worldwide, many rainwater harvesting methods are still new and untried. Some methods will work, others won’t. What works for one region may not work for another. In the dry or drought-stricken areas, rainwater harvesting has a specific focus – to recharge water sources. Water from lawns or other places that can be reused is usually harvested for landscaping purposes or for irrigating fields and farms. Other methods collect rainwater for watering lawns or for filling ponds or pools.

The average household uses around 1,000 gallons of water per day, but just 50 gallons are left over at the end of the day. A household with just one water-harvesting system may need to reduce the amount of water used by 25% in order to save 50 gallons of water per day. That’s why many households are beginning to use rainwater harvesting to capture extra water during the rainy season.

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