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York Rainwater Harvesting Project

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Type: preparedness_and_mitigationType: water_securityYork, Yorkshire and the Humber, UK

Join the York Rainwater Harvesting Project Sample Project

By Thrivespring

The aim of the York Rainwater Harvesting Project is to set up rainwater harvesting systems throughout the city. Rainwater harvesting and utilisation helps to mitigate water shortages, control floods, and secure water for emergencies. The systems redirect and store water for both potable and non-potable uses including drinking, irrigation, laundry, hygiene and toilets.

According to the Lebanon Green Building Council, rainwater harvesting systems also reduce non-point source pollution such as pesticides, fertilizers and petroleum products that end up in rivers and groundwater. As decentralized water systems, they contribute to the restoration of stream flows and habitats. Integrated on-site water capture reduces the waste and environmental disruption involved in centralized water distribution systems.

Other benefits include:
- Reduced water bills
- Reduced volume of storm-water runoff, thereby lessening erosion and decreasing load on storm sewers
- Increased plant health - plants thrive when irrigated with stored rainwater
- Reduced demands on centralized water delivery systems, especially during drought or dry season
- Reduced need for costly expansion of centralized water delivery systems
- Reduced need for spending on site storm water controls

A good example of a community implementing a grassroots rainwater harvesting system is from the Mukojima district of Tokyo. Local residents set up a simple and unique rainwater system called “Rojison” which collects rainwater from the roofs of private houses for garden watering, fire-fighting and drinking water in emergencies.

If you are interested in learning more about this project, please get in touch.

Some more resources:

- Harvest the Rain project in Black Creek, Ontario, Canada -
- A video from Saint Paul, Minnesota on viewing rainwater as a resource -
- And below is a really clever public service campaign on rainwater harvesting from India.