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Rainwater System Component Articles

Sample Systems

Water Conservation Articles

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Rainwater Resources - Getting Started with Rain barrels  Getting Started with Tanks or Cisterns  Advanced Rainwater Systems  Rainwater Calculators | Rainwater Incentives |  Rainwater Regulations |  Rainwater Research |  Worldwide Information Sites   |  Books, Magazines and Films  

Water-Related Resources  - Alternative Water Sources - Composting   - Energy Conservation - Greywater - Organic Gardening - Permaculture - Rain Chains - Rain Gardens - Sustainable Development - Water Conservation - Water Conservation Non-Profits - Water/Energy Nexus - Water Shed and River Conservation Organizations - Water Quality - Xeriscaping  

Non-Water Sustainable Recourses

SITES & ORGANIZATIONS - we'll be happy to get you listed here and discuss other opportunities

Getting Started with Rain Barrels  - The documents below will help you get started.  They focus on easy ways to get started with rain barrels.

What is a Rain Barrel - One page overview of what a rain barrel system is and with pictures of several different styles. 

Building a Rainwater Harvesting System - A very thorough, step-by-step video that explains how to build a rainwater collection system using rain barrels.

How to Make a Rain Barrel - A two-page PDF on how to make a rain barrel from a barrel.

Rainbarrel Parts Kit - Once you have a barrel, buy a kit that contains all the parts you need to make a rainbarrel.

Construct a Rain Barrel - Great step by step instructions and parts list on how to make a rain barrel from a barrel.

Construct a Rain Barrel - Powerpoint presentation by York County Parks & Recreation on how to make a rain barrel from a barrel including a list of materials.

Green Rainwater - A simple and short lesson on how to build a very attractive rainbarrel to collect rain. Assumes you have a rainbarrel to start with.

Making a Rain Barrel - A short tutorial on how to make a rain barrel from a barrel from AgriLife Extension.

Rainbarrel Maintenance 101 - Like most things around your home, your rainbarrel needs a little regular attention to keep working smoothly. Here are some simple recommendations to keep your barrels clean and healthy.

Rainbarrel to Toilet - How to Guide - Good guide on how to connect a rainbarrel to a normal everyday toilet and use rainwater instead of clean drinking water in the toilet.

12 Water Saving Tips - This easy to read 2 page brochure will help you with some quick and easy steps to save water inside and outside your home.

Outdoors Water Saving Tips -  Before moving up to a bigger rainwater collection system, try these easy tips to save water around your home.  It is always a good investment to conserve water.

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Getting Started with Tanks and Cisterns - if you're interested in larger scale systems including tanks and pumps... 

Best Management Practice Fact Sheet 6: Rainwater Harvesting - A Best Management Practice guide published by the Virigina Cooperative Extension.

Sustainable Building Sourcebook: Rainwater Harvesting -  An in depth information resource on rainwater systems and components.  Some information Austin, TX specific, but a lot of the information can be used in planning systems anywhere.

Specifications of Rain Barrels and Cisterns - General short article on how to build low cost rain barrels.  Developed for developing countries but applicable to anyone who just wants to build a low-cost starter system.

Texas Guide to Rainwater Harvesting - Great online publication that gives an A to Z overview of rainwater systems.  Some information is specific to Texas , but most of the information is extremely useful to all systems.  

First Flush Device Comparison - Good in depth article on comparison of different first flush methods.  It is written by a provider of a first flush product.

Other good articles to read if you are just getting started: Conveyance - Simple or Complex, Comparing Tank Options, Pump Systems for Rainwater Catchment, and of course there are several good book options.

How to Guides - Save time and money by using these guides. Guides on Building a Floating Filter, Properly Sizing Gutters, and Sizing the Cistern, based on Supply and Demand.

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Advanced Rainwater Systems - Want to read latest research from around the world or understand the math.  This section is for you.  

Harvesting Rainwater for Landscape Use - An Arizona Department of Water Resources publication.  It covers from simple to complex system with specific examples and data for Arizona.  The manual includes rainfall data for Phoenix and Tucson and a section on calculating water needs.

Methods of Rainwater Harvesting - A good, long article on components of a Rainwater Harvesting Systems including filtration options.

National Sanitation Foundation Protocol P151 - This NSF webpage listing the health effects from Rainwater Catchment components. It allows you to search by vendor or product category.

Rainwater Harvesting in Rural Areas - This website/paper outlines the use of rainwater harvesting for drinking purposes and agriculture, especially in semi-arid regions like the Brazilian Semi-Arid Tropics.

Rainwater Harvesting Incentives - A listing, by state, of all known incentives for rainwater collection. The list also includes some incentives for greywater, water conservation and storm water.

Rainwater Harvesting Statues and Regulations - A listing, by state of all known statues and requlations pertaining to rainwater collection.

Rainwater Harvesting - Technical Brief - This paper published by WaterAid outlines the use and building of ferrocement jars and cisterns for low-cost rainwater harvesting for drinking purposes and agriculture in arid regions and poorer regions of the world.

How to Guides - Save time and money by using these guides. Guides on Building a Floating Filter, Properly Sizing Gutters, and Sizing the Cistern, based on Supply and Demand.

Water Books and Films - A review of the latest books and films on water.

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Rainwater Research - With the growth of rainwater harvesting, universities and research organizations around the world are performing indepth research in to various aspects of rainwater harvesting systems. This section of the website lists some of the latest research from around the world.

Assessment of rainfall variability, rainwater harvesting potential and storage requirements - Rainfall variability with periodicity of 5-6 years has been demonstrated for our study area and may be attributed to tropical and extratropical factors which operate during different months, seasons and years. Rainfall variability in terms of coefficient of variation ranges from 24-39% and 26-41% for the seasons and months. Domestic rainwater harvesting has the potential to meet 27.51% -54.91% of non-potable household water demand as well as 78.34% -156.38% of household potable water demand for a six-member household. It is highly encouraged as a supplementary water source especially in rural and peri-urban areas to reduce their vulnerability to acute shortage of water infrastructure. >> more

Canadian Rainwater Harvesting and Grey Water Reuse - Many countries, including some regions in Canada, have a limited amount of water that can be economically delivered to residences as potable water. Limiting factors may be regional, seasonal, remote or urban. They may also relate to the ambient quality of available water and the technology available to treat the water. To help meet water demand, rainwater harvesting and grey water practices are commonly used in several European countries, as well as some others, whereas they are less frequently employed in North America and effectively prohibited by regulation or custom. To better understand current practices in North America and elsewhere, the Canadian Water and Wastewater Association (CWWA), on behalf of Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC), undertook to review practices involving water reuse in residential and other buildings. This included looking at regulations and standards governing non-potable water. >> more

Capturing Rainwater from Rooftops - An Efficient Water Resource Management Strategy that Increases Supply and Reduces Pollution. Many communities in the United States face serious threats to a safe, steady supply of water. These include a longstanding reliance on centralized water delivery systems that results in urban areas and agencies largely overlooking opportunities to integrate alternate local sources of water to meet their water supply needs; the unnecessary use of potable water for non-potable uses, such as outdoor landscape irrigation and indoor toilet flushing; climate change; and continually increasing areas of impervious surfaces in our landscape that result in stormwater runoff carrying pollution to our rivers, lakes, and beaches. Although the problems of water supply and water pollution can be complex, practical solutions for both are available now, such as capturing and using rainwater from rooftops. >> more

Evaluating the Feasibility and Developing Design Requirements and Tools for Large-scale Rainwater Harvesting in Ontario - Rainwater harvesting (RWH) is the process of collecting run-off rainwater from roof surfaces and storing it for later domestic use. Fuelled by a growing interest among homeowners and municipalities to conserve water and
improve stormwater management, RWH is rapidly becoming a major part of sustainable building practices across Canada. This Research Highlight describes a project carried out in anticipation of this growing trend by the University of Guelph School of Engineering in partnership with Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC), the Canadian Water Network and several other private and public partners. The goal of the two-and-a-half year project was to investigate the feasibility of widespread residential rainwater harvesting in Ontario. >> more

Life Cycle Assessment of Domestic and Agricultural RWH Systems - A paper that compares the environmental impact and implications of rainwater harvesting systems and energy savings compared to conventional U.S. water delivery infrastructure including a full life-cycle assessment of domestic and agricultural systems. It shows these systems have advantage over the U.S. water delivery infrastructure in most cases; especially in minimal designs used. >> more

Making Rainwater Harvesting Mainstream - Rainwater harvesting (RWH) can become a mainstream sustainable water technology capable of meeting some of the challenges posed by rising water demand, flooding and climate change — but only if policymakers take immediate action, an academic study shows. Research by the University of Exeter’s Centre for Water Systems (CWS) has identified cost-effective policy recommendations that could break down some of the social and technical barriers inhibiting development of urban RWH systems in the UK. Interviews with small and medium enterprises (SMEs) and surveys of householders revealed a clear willingness to adopt the use of RWH. However, businesses were deterred by a lack of information on how to implement the technology and a limited knowledge of available financial incentives. >> more

Plant Science - Effect of copper on growth in cucumber plants - Twenty-day-old cucumber plants were submitted to copper stress during 5 days. Leaf expansion rather than dry weight accumulation was the first target of copper inhibition. Despite of a higher copper accumulation in the second leaf (SL) rather than in the first (FL), photosynthesis decrease was more pronounced in the latter. Since leaf expansion declined, leaves became a weak sink and this might account for the observed accumulation of carbohydrates in leaves. This accumulation could induce a feedback inhibition of photosynthesis. The significant accumulation of starch and sucrose did not occur in roots and seemed to be confined to leaves. Copper was sequestered primarily in the roots. >> more

Rainwater Harvesting: A Holistic Approach for Sustainable Water Management in Built Environments - This article describes a holistic approach for planning and implementation of water infrastructure in built urban environments. The holistic approach is based on recognizing the links between all water on a site, from potable water to stormwater. The holistic approach facilitates sustainable management of water resources and water infrastructures. Rainwater harvesting system, defined as rooftop rainwater capture and use is a key component of developing a holistic approach for water management in urban environments. The topics discussed in the article include: 1) characteristics of urban runoff and potential impact of rooftop rainwater harvesting on stormwater drainage system, 2) characteristics of potable water systems and potential impacts rooftop rainwater harvesting and use on water and energy conservation, and 3) the status of groundwater systems in urban environments and potential advantages of rainwater harvesting in conjunction with groundwater recharge and storage. The article is concluded with potential impediments to implementing rainwater systems in urban environments. >> more

Rainwater Harvesting: A Qualitative an Quantitative Analysis - Water demand is increasing due to population growth, development and global weather change. Also, there is growing interest on applying sustainable solutions and green technology. Rainwater harvesting is a sustainable technique for using rainwater to meet the growing demand on water at both urban and rural areas. It is essential to assess the suitability of the rainwater for both potable and non-potable uses. In this study, a rainwater harvesting system was installed at the Faculty of Engineering, Universiti Putra Malaysia in order to conduct qualitative and quantitative and qualitative analysis for the system. Quantitative analysis showed that on average, about 85% of the total daily demand can be obtained from the rainwear harvesting system. Also, the qualitative analysis show that the rainwater was slightly acidic (average pH=6.15). So, it is recommended to use the rainwater for non-potable purposes such as watering gardens, washing floors and flushing toilets. >>more

Roofing Materials’ Contributions to Storm-Water Runoff Pollution - Development in sensitive watersheds continues to pose environmental problems for receiving waters. One contributor to this long-term pollution is building and other construction materials. However, the long-term effect of many building materials on the environment has not been quantified due to limited testing of these materials prior to sales and installation. Laboratory “leach” testing of commercially available roofing materials by this research group indicated that the potential for release primarily nutrients, lighter hydrocarbons, pesticides, and metals is substantial. Testing of metals’ release from aged roofing panels also has shown that the potential for pollutant release still exists after 60 years. The data missing from a complete evaluation of many roofing materials is behavior over the lifespan of the material, including the critical period of initial exposure. The 2 years of runoff data from a pilot-scale testing of these materials indicated substantial concerns regarding zinc from uncoated galvanized metals and copper from treated woods in this early part of the materials’ lifespan, plus the potential for long-term nutrient releases in the runoff from several roofing types. >> more

Texas A&M University - Evaluation of Contaminant Mixing in Rainwater First Flush Diverters - The primary study evaluated the influence of flow rate, diverter chamber diameter, and diverter chamber to downspout transition fitting on the movement of contaminants within a downspout first flush diverter. One key finding of the study - Utilizing a straight tee as a transition fitting with a floating ball, acting as a barrier between water collected in the diverter chamber of a downspout first flush diverter and the flow passing through the transition fitting, limited diverted water from interacting with the subsequent flow of harvested rainwater. >> more

Thinking Outside the Tank - As a water retention technique, rainwater harvesting has been around for thousands of years - and it will be around for as long as humans are. However, in recent years as systems have become more technology-based, muddled messages around their use have clouded the way in which rainwater harvesting is viewed in the UK. This report summarises the results of recent research undertaken at the University of Exeter.

Undertaken between 2007 and 2010, the Rainwater Harvesting in the UK (RWHUK) project, aimed to fill some of the socio-technical knowledge gaps in relation to rainwater harvesting system implementation and utilisation in the specific context of the UK. Although the UK was the focus, case studies and findings across the international RWH arena were drawn into the research, ensuring that it represents a global ‘state-of-the-art’ investigation into the technology. The research was undertaken at the University of Exeter’s Centre for Water Systems. It utilised a range of methods to collect, analyse and interpret data and evidence, from a number of local, national and international case studies. >> more

Water Quality Research Australia - Water Quality and Health Risks from Urban Rainwater Tanks - Overall the chemical water quality analysis shows that rainwater in Australia is soft water with low total dissolved solids or salts, which is in agreement with studies in other countries (Hontoria et al. 2003). Water from tanks in urban Australia is generally slightly acidic. One key finding of the study - Results obtained from rainwater tank studies described in this report showed that tank water is of relatively poor microbiological quality compared with conventional Australian urban water supplies. Furthermore, the detection of enteric bacterial pathogens, Campylobacter spp and Salmonella spp. >> more

Penn State Harrisburg - Rainwater Harvesting for Landscape Irrigation - One aspect of green engineering and sustainable design is how man interacts with the hydrologic cycle. This includes how stormwater runoff is managed and whether runoff is viewed as a waste product or an opportunity. Rainwater harvesting is a critical component in integrated urban water management. If rainwater harvesting barrels/collection tanks are widely distributed and used in conjunction with other water-sensitive development practices such as low impact development and/or conservation design, a substantial fraction of runoff can be removed from the drainage system. >> more

University of Exeter - Rainwater Harvesting in the UK - Current Practice and Future Trends - Rainwater harvesting (RWH), where nunoff from roofs and impervious areas is collected and utilised, is receiving renewed attention as an alternative water source. RWH requires less treatment than greywater recycling, if being used for non-potable demand such as toilet flushing. However, there are challenges to overcome in the promotion and implementation of RWH in the UK; it is a relatively unproven technology and there are still many concerns to be assuaged. Nevertheless, the situation is beginning to change with welcome moves coming from the Government, the UKRHA and housing developers themselves, in response to an increasingly challenging water resources situation. This paper will provide a brief introduction to RWH, along with an overview of the current and future prospects of the technology within the UK. >> more

Portland State University - Neighborhood Level Analysis of Rainwater Catchment - A recent research project by Brad Crowley, home-based cisterns were compared against the $1.4 billion “Big Pipe” program to upgrade the current Portland, OR combined storm water and sewer system. At stake is a way to reduce the estimated 2.8 billion gallons of raw sewage and stormwater that is dumped annually into the Willamette river. The study discovered that harvesting rainwater onsite may be a more cost-effective and environmentally sensitive approach to the public works projects. >> more

If you are interested in listing your research on this website, please email us. 

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Worldwide Information Sites - These sites and sample installations should give you plenty of ideas of what's possible.

American Rainwater Catchment Systems Association (ARCSA) - The premiere organization in North America that educates and certifies Accredited Professionals in North America to design and install catchment systems. Also holds an annual conference and lists member vendors and professionals in the industry on their website.

Brethren of Cisterns - A short article, Texas specific, on the history of cisterns in the area.  

EAUTARCIE- A European website dealing with rainwater harvesting and water from a philosphical view point.

European Rainwater Catchment Systems Association - ERCSA represents for Europe the interests of IRCSA (International Rainwater Catchment Systems Association), the global organization for promoting the utilization and values of rainwater harvesting.

Family Cistern: 3,000 Years of Household Water Collection in Jordan - Rainwater collection is not new and this article shares a historic perspective to this seemingly modern problem.

Guidance on the Use of Rainwater Tanks (Australia) - General article that covers the high level details of the use of rainwater tanks with information that is specific to Australia.

International Rainwater Catchment System Association (IRCSA) - The International Rainwater Catchment Systems Association (IRCSA) aims to promote and advance rainwater catchment systems technology with respect to planning, development, management, science, technology, research and education worldwide.

Rainwater Harvesting for Montana - If you are from Montana and interested in Catchment systems, this is the article for you.  Covers the system basics and points you to courses at   Montana State University.

Rainwater Harvesting from ToolBase Services - Short overview article on rainwater harvesting, but features an excellent case study from Santa Fe, NM.

Reducing Stormwater Costs through Low Impact Development (LID) Strategies and Practices - This report provides information to cities, counties, states, private-sector developers and others on the costs and benefits of using Low Impact Development (LID) strategies and practices to help protect and restore water quality. Report includes rainbarrels and cisterns as one way to reduce stormwater runoff.

SearNet - Southern and East Africa Rainwater Network website containing useful links to projects within the member countries as well as general information links and stories.

West Virginia University (WVU) Water Tech Briefs - "Tech Briefs" are four-page fact sheets included in On Tap magazine produced by the National Environmental Services Center (NESC). Each fact sheet provides concise, technical information about a drinking water treatment technology or issue relevant to small systems.

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Related Links - Links to other sustainable life topics...

- Composting   - Greywater - Organic Gardening  - Permaculture - Rain Gardens  - Sustainable Development - Water Conservation - Water/Energy Nexus - Xeriscaping 

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Alternative Water Sources

Fog Harvesting - An online site describing fog harvesting and where it has been implemented

Fog-harvesting for water - clouds on tap - Article on fog harvesting and where it has been implemented in South Africa.


Composters.com - An online composters supply shop

Master Composters - An online site dedicated to composting with loads of information and useful links.

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Energy Conservation

A Guidebook to Energy Efficient Appliances - Great article about energy efficient appliances, with a fantastic list of resources on the topic.

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Arizona - Best practices guide

California - Best practices guide

Environsink - An environmentally helpful secondary sink that utilizes all standard plumbing fittings to recycle water right from your sink.

Greywater - A site dedicated to information and education on greywater systems.  

New Mexico - Best practices guide

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Organic Gardening

Avant-Gardening - "You can grow" using gardening as a medium for creative expression and spiritual growth. Extensive sustainable organic gardening information, workshops, monthly newsletter, formal tea gardens, virtual tours, links/resources and more!  

HDRA - A UK-based organization that researches and publishes the latest research dealing with organic gardens.  

Organic Gardening Magazine - Magazine and website covering all the aspects of organic gardening.  Site also has an online community for posting questions.

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Permaculture Activist Magazine - North America's leading and the world's longest-lived permaculture periodical you'll find information about permaculture design, edible landscaping, bioregionalism, ecovillage design, aquaculture, natural building, earthworks, forestry, soils, agriculture, urban sustainability, renewable energy, regeneration & restoration, and many practical solutions.

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Rain Gardens 

Rain Gardens - Site with two well written overviews on rain gardens and useful links to other related sites.  

Rain Gardens of West Michigan - Rain Garden Educational Website
1007 Lake Dr. SE

Grand Rapids, MI 49506

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Watershed, River and Groundwater Conservation Organizations

Surfacewater and ground water are directly related and extremely critical to both our quantity and quality of US water. The following organizations are dedicated to preserving these precious and periled resources.

American Rivers
1025 Vermont Ave. NW Suite 720
Washington, DC 20005

Black Mesa Recovery Campaign
P.O. Box 1925
Flagstaff, AZ 86002

Charles River Watershed Association
2391 Commonwealth
Newton, MA 02166

Ipswich River Watershed Association
240 County Road, P.O. Box 576
Ipswich, MA 01938

Michigan Citizens for Water Conservation
P.O. Box 1
Mecosta, MI 49332

New Mexico Watershed Working Groups

Minnesota Center for Environmental Advocacy
26 E. Exchange Street, Suite 206
St. Paul, MN 55101-1667

San Macros River Foundation
P.O. Box 1393
San Marcos, TX 78667

Save America's Water
P.O. Box 573
Shawano, WI 54166

Save Our Springs, Inc
P.O. Box 174
Crystal Springs, FL 33524

The Grand Canyon Trust
2601 N. Fort Valley Road
Flagstaff, AZ 86001

The Nature Conservancy
1510 E. Ft. Lowell Road
Tuscon, AZ 85719

The Nature Conservancy - Cosumnes River
13501 Franklin Blvd.
Galt, CA 95632

The Nature Conservancy - Apalachicola River
P.O. Box 876
Apalachicola, FL 32329-0876

Waterkeepters of Wisconsin
P.O. Box 66
Briggsville, WI 53920

Water Institute - The Occidental Arts and Ecology Center (OAEC) established the WATER Institute (Watershed Advocacy, Training, Education, & Research) to promote understanding of the importance of healthy watersheds to healthy communities.

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Sustainable Development

City Trees – Sustainability Guidelines and Best Practices Guide for Urban Areas in pdf format

EarthToys - Alternative and Renewable Energy News, Emagazine and News.

Eco-Portal - An information gateway empowering the movement for environmental sustainability.

EcoSchool - Design - A web site that seeks to assist schools, and those who care about them, in transforming paved schoolyards into vibrant ecosystems for outdoor learning.

Frugal Country Living - Don't just dream about it - live the life of your dreams! A website full of creative living ideas, to help you live the good life - on the income you already have!

GreenHomeBuilding - A website featuring information on solar heating, renewable energy, water conservation, recycled materials and natural buildings.

Greenmatters - Quick access to tools, solutions, and examples that simplify the busy person's commitment to green living, e-activism and responsible consumerism.

Permaculture Institute - Learning Center for Practical Sustainability Skills. We teach dryland permaculture, beekeeping, watershed management, rainwater harvesting and natural building, with focus in Southwest and New Mexico.

Renewables and Efficiency Website - A US database of state, local and federal incentives for renewable energy.

SaveTheEnvironment - A directory site with links to others sites on air, land and water.

TheGreenDirectory - Your guide to eco-friendly products and service around Australia.

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Water Conservation 

Water Fun Facts - A list of fun facts about water. Linked to a set of not so fun facts about water

Clean Water Act - The primary federal law in the United States governing water pollution. Commonly abbreviated as the CWA, the act established the symbolic goals of eliminating releases to water of toxic amounts of toxic substances.

Earth Works Institute - A non-profit organization dedicated to protecting the integrity of the natural environment by developing and promoting models of natural systems to create sustainable, self sufficient communities. - A non-profit organization dedicated to protecting the integrity of the natural environment by developing and promoting models of natural systems to create sustainable, self sufficient communities.

EPA - WaterSense program website that list information on water saving devices, and a page with rebate information on different types of water using appliances and fixtures.

Evaluation and Cost Benefit Analysis of Municipal Water Conservation Programs - A report published that evaluates the cost/benefits of various water conservation devices.

Global Water Futures - A report published in 2005 by The Center for Strategic and International Studies and Sandia National Labs on the current state of water around the global, with recommendations on what the U.S. can do to help solve the problem. The report is the output of the CSIS-SNL Global Water Futures Conference 2005.

Greenfaith - GreenFaith is an interfaith coalition for the environment that was founded in 1992. We work with houses of worship, religious schools and people of all faiths to help them become better environmental stewards.

Lifewater International - Lifewater International equips partner organizations and works with them to empower communities in developing countries to gain safe water, adequate sanitation, and effective hygiene.

Residential Water Conservation - A site dedicated to water conservation. It has a section of the site with helpful information on conversing water with topics like: Why Should we Conserve? Conserving Water at Home. Water Tips and Tools.   There is a very small overview of Rainwater Harvesting in the Tips and Tools section.

United Nations Report on Water - If you wonder why you are thinking about a rainwater catchment system and need a little inspiration, read this report on the world's water condition and it should get you moving.  This site has a very wide variety of water related articles.

Water - Use it Wisely - A site that includes a water audit tool to help you determine how much water you really use.

Before You Harvest - Conserve - An article listing nearly a 100 ways to save water, both inside and outside the house.

Know your water footprint and Water/Energy Relationship

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Water Conservation and Reuse - Non-Profit Organizations

Clear Water Initiative - Our goal has remained the same: to bring water and, ultimately, health and opportunity to those far less fortunate than we are, and in doing this, we have facilitated access to clean water for over 13,000 people. ClearWater Initiative is now a full-time operation with staff in the US and Uganda.

Global Water Partnership - The Global Water Partnership is a working partnership among all those involved in water management: government agencies, public institutions, private companies, professional organizations, multilateral development agencies and others committed to the principles initiated at the Dublin Conference on Water and the Environment in 1992.

EPA WaterSense Program - The Environmental Protection Agency's voluntary program promoting water efficient appliances.

Global Water Partnership - The Global Water Partnership is a working partnership among all those involved in water management: government agencies, public institutions, private companies, professional organizations, multilateral development agencies and others committed to the principles initiated at the Dublin Conference on Water and the Environment in 1992.

Natural Resource Defense Council - One of the most effective environmental organization in the U.S. working to protect the planet's wildlife and wild places, including clean water.

Save the Rain - A 501 (c) (3) non profit organization that teaches people water starved areas to catch, store, clean and use the Rain as a sustainable water supply.

The Ocean Conservancy - Advocates for wild, and healthy oceans. The Ocean Conservancy's International Coastal Cleanup is the largest and most successful volunteer event of its kind.

WaterAid - An international charity dedicated to helping people escape the stranglehold of poverty and disease caused by living without safe water and sanitation.

WaterKeeper Alliance - A non-profit organization whose mission is that of a citizen watchdog for water resources. A WaterKeeper is a local full-time paid advocate responsible for keeping local waterways clean. The national organization provides a national and international voice for education, litigation and research, analysis and review of water-related issues.

WaterReuse - A non-profit organization whose mission is to advance the beneficial and efficient use of water resources through education, sound science, and technology using reclamation, recycling, reuse and desalination.

World Water Center- A non-profit organization whose function is to act as a clearinghouse for information related to water projects and activities on a worldwide basis and to provide a best practices rating system.

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Water Energy Relationship - Water and energy are very related. As more and more research on water is completed this link is becoming clearer. The best way to save energy is to save water. Below are a few of the links on this topic.

Water Footprint - You might be amazed how much water you really use. This website is full of useful information, and also features a water footprint calculator.

Water Footprint Calculator - You fun calculator that just takes a few minutes to find out how much indirect water you consume, compared to the average comsumption rate.

Water: Why Care - Article on link between water and energy. Pumping water takes massive amounts of energy which generates air pollution. Save water, to save energy.

Alternative Energy Projects Stumble on a Need for Water - New York Times article on the need for water in quest for building alternative energy plants.

Energy and Water Security - Presentation given at pre-Copenhagen Climate Change Conference by Dr. Hoffman U.S. Department of Energy.

International Water Association 2009 Conference on Water and Energy - Water and Energy 2009 Conference put focus on measures for mitigation in the water sector and potential synergies with the energy sector.

Link Between Carbon Markets and Fresh Water - Presentation given at pre-Copenhagan Climate Change Conference providing great data on the linkage between water and energy.

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Water Quality 

Drinking Water Book - A valuable guide that you will likely refer to again and again.

Drinking Water Treatability Database (EPA) - Find specific treatment types for specific water issues. A great new tool from the EPA.

Environmental Working Group - EWG's water filter buying guide is a online tool to assist you in buying the right filter type for specific water problems.

Enviromental Protection Agency - Drinking water quality standards, listing the maximum amount allowed in drinking water by the EPA. 

Particulate Sizing Chart - A chart, provided courtesy of Good Water Company, that shows the effective ranges of different filtration methods.

UV 101 White Paper - A brief white paper on how UV systems work and what they do.

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Landscape Water Conservation - A general overview of Xeriscape with specific recommendations for Texas.

Water Efficient Landscaping - A very good brochure of what Xeriscaping is with excellent pictures and graphics.  

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January 2016

Rain and Water Harvesting

Climate Ready Water Utilities

Obama Admin Wants To Cut Water Use By A Third

EPA Survey Shows $271 Billion Needed for Nation’s Wastewater Infrastructure

Flint Wants Safe Water, and Someone to Answer for Its Crisis

Every building is its own watershed

December 2015

California Wants to Store Water for Farmers, but Struggles Over How to Do It

Haunted by Waters

The Central Valley is sinking: drought forces farmers to ponder the abyss

ANSI Approves Standard for Determining Landscape Plant Water Demand

Earth's underground water quantified

In California, Stingy Water Users Are Fined in Drought, While the Rich Soak

October 2015

In Drought-Ridden
California, the
Classic Lawn
Loses Ground

Going local to solve Mexico City's water crisis

U.S. Has Reached 52 Percent Drought

Recycling saves water

September 2015

Microbeads Entering Our Water Daily Could Cover 300 Tennis Courts

August 2015

'Bug-killing book' that cleans up to 100 litres of murky water passes field trials

How California Is Winning the Drought

Natural Uranium Contamination in Major U.S. Aquifers Linked to Nitrate

July 2015

Community resilience in face of drought

Water Crisis Brings Out Puerto Rico’s Creative Side

Less than Zero

How federal dollars are financing the water crisis in the West

13 ways to provide water and sanitation for nine billion people

California Is Sitting On The Solution To Its Drought Problem

Drought Sends U.S. Water Agency Back to Drawing Board

Should we learn to live without water

Don't let Texas' excess water go to waste

On Parched Navajo Reservation, ‘Water Lady’ Brings Liquid Gold

June 2015

Parched Southwest looks closely at turning salt water into fresh water

May 2015

Farmers Agree to Water Cuts in California

Your Contribution to the California Drought

Water Pricing in Two Thirsty Cities: In One, Guzzlers Pay More, and Use Less

Drought’s Extremes Tallied at Record-Low Lake Mead

April 2015

Drought Frames Economic Divide of Californians

Water Efficiency Rating Score (WERS) Program Wins Sustainable Santa Fe Award

Drought is not just a California problem

Mighty Rio Grande Now a Trickle Under Siege

There's A Simple Way To Make A Big Dent In California's Drought. Why Aren't Government Officials Promoting It?

California Imposes First Mandatory Water Restrictions to Deal With Drought

March 2015

It’s time to get serious about the California drought

California Has One Year of Water Left

The Southwestern Water Wars

Draft ASPE Standard - Electrochemical Drinking Water Treatment Systems

February 2015

Lawns v oysters

Portland is now powered by water pipes and flushing toilets

U.S. 'Megadroughts' Are Likely Later This Century, Study Finds

New Dangers Found In Produced Water

Florida's Water Waste Prompts Look at Recyling

Dirty California Water Linked To Obesity

Researchers Call For Changes In 50-Year-Old Drinking Water Standards

January 2015

Onwards to a future of grey and black water

Rain, rain, don't go away

First Ever Performance-Based Comparative Water Use Rating Tool for Home Builders

Big Fracking Question: Is Our Drinking Water at Risk

New SWIFT fund will pump millions into water projects in Texas

Water plan tackles critical issue of supply and demand

Reclaimed Water May Cut Need for Fertilizer

National – States React to New Era of Water Scarcity

Old General Water News >>

Old Rainwater News >>


WaterSong Summit - Oakland CA

List a Job/Workshop

Xerxes Tanks


Fun Facts


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  3. What is the best way of harvesting rain?
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  6. Can I use drip irrigation or soaker hoses with a rainwater?
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  9. I want more pressure, how should I raise it?
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Taking on Water

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