Rainwater harvesting is the process of collecting and storing rainwater for later use. It has a number of advantages and disadvantages, which must be carefully considered before deciding whether or not to implement a rainwater harvesting system. In this article, all the advantages and disadvantages of rainwater harvesting are discussed.
Advantages of Rainwater Harvesting
The followings are the advantages of rainwater harvesting:
- Rainwater collection and delivery system installation are quite cheap
- This is an easily accessible clean water source
- Rainwater is a renewable source, so it does not exhaust our resources.
- Modern cities have converted most of their land surface into impervious concrete layers which can cause flooding during heavy rainfall. Collection of surface runoff will reduce urban flooding.
- Rainwater harvesting will lessen soil erosion happening due to heavy surface runoff.
- Using rainwater for irrigation is cost-effective and groundwater exhaustion is reduced.
- Harvesting rainwater is a non-labor-intensive task and requires minimum skills.
- It is possible to construct a rainwater harvesting system with locally available materials.
- This technology is appropriate for small-scale farmers in remote areas.
Disadvantages of Rainwater Harvesting
The followings are the disadvantages of rainwater harvesting:
- The quality of rainwater is not always good enough to drink without treatment.
- Rainwater harvesting is not dependable for arid areas that undergo prolonged drought or extensive dry seasons.
- A cistern or storage facility has a high chance of getting contaminated if not cleaned and maintained properly.
- Maintenance requires funding but it can be compensated by reduced water bills.
- Mosquito waterborne diseases- If storage tanks are not monitored regularly, many waterborne diseases can grow and infect the users. Moreover, still, water accelerates mosquito growth.
- Due to limited storage, sometimes rainwater can not be collected to the full extent.
- The initial setup cost for the rainwater harvesting system is high.
- The yield from the rainwater harvesting system depends on the rainfall which is highly variable.
- In some cases, the water table can rise too close to the surface, which can lead to problems with drainage.
- If not done properly, rainwater harvesting can lead to groundwater depletion.
- What is Rainwater Harvesting?
- Methods of Rainwater Harvesting
- Uses of Rainwater
- Importance of Rainwater Harvesting