A major part of India, especially states like Maharashtra, Tamil Nadu and Rajasthan (to name a few) are staring at drought that is likely to hit harder this year. Our only hope for survival is extreme water conservation and aggressive rainwater harvesting.
Taking cognisance of the increasing water crisis, a community in Chennai saved thirty thousand litres of water in over an hour from its first showers on Saturday. The residential community with 56 families collected a huge amount of water by harvesting every drop of rain from their 25,000 square foot terrace.
According to NDTV, the Koda family, who live in Sabari Terrace, an apartment complex located along Chennai’s IT corridor, use only rainwater for three months a year; there is no piped water supply in this area. The community until last year let the rainwater recharge the groundwater table. Today, the collected water is stored, after treatment, in massive underground tanks with only the surplus being released into the ground.
This brings about enormous savings as they avoid buying water from private tankers. The harvesting facility also reduces dependency on the state water supply board to provide them with their daily water requirements.
Harsha Koda, the prime ideator of the project and also Secretary of the residents association, said, “When we recharge groundwater we have to wait for six months for it to get into our wells to use that water. But on OMR (Old Mahabalipuram Road), where there is no piped water, we need water now. So if it rains today we collect the water and in two hours we get to use it. Thirty thousand litres means we save around Rs. 5,000.”
Explaining the potential of this method of rainwater harvesting, his wife, Prabha Koda was quoted as saying, “From every square foot of terrace surface area we can take one litre of water if it rains for an hour. It’s as simple. We have a 25,000 square foot terrace and we get at least 25,000 litres in an hour. If there’s a three-hour downpour we collect one lakh litres, completely filling up our tanks with rainwater sufficient for the 56 flats for three days.”
The successful implementation of this water-saving method also influenced many other nearby apartments and communities to replicate the model and save the natural water in the parched city.
We hope apartments and communities across the country adopt rainwater harvesting and similar methods as the immediate solution to reduce water scarcity in India.
Great going Chennaites!