Water is life. It is available in bounty yet it is limited. We need water for everything be it agriculture, industry or household. We need it everyday. But today, all across the globe, humans are not utilizing but exploiting water resources. The water table is going down, wells are being dug deeper and deeper to get water for irrigation, household, industrial and all other needs. The exploitation of Ground water is reaching alarming limits. Water is depleting fast and in every city the water table is going down creating all sorts of problems including environmental imbalances. It is said that the next World War would be for water. Recently, Capetown was without water and immediate steps were taken to stop any wastage of water.
We need to find a sustainable way to reduce depletion of water table, recharge the local acquifers, reduce urban flooding and mitigate climate changes. India receives a good amount of rainfall. There is a notion that rain water that falls/collects in the open grounds enriches the water table. In reality, most of it is only absorbed by soil, then a lot of water is lost due to evaporation and barely 5-10% reaches the water table. A good 50% of the total rain water gets mixed with the drain water and becomes unsuitable for human consumption. To get back clean water from the polluted water a lot of cost, time and effort has to be spent. However, if this rain water is stopped from running down the drains and is instead harvested, then it can be used for supporting the underground water table, this way we can definitely move the water shortage to a future date and support the recharge of Ground water table. Setting up Rain water harvesting units is a good way to recharge the ground water table.
The present Global Grant Project is to install 08 Rain Water Harvesting units in various cities of Rotary International District 3100. The cities comprising of RID 3100 fall in the western part of the State of Uttar Pradesh. Uttar Pradesh is one of most densely populated state of India and comes in the Northern territory of India. Due to its population, rampant industrialization and occupation of land for housing and other needs, the exploitation of Ground Water in UP is very high.
The Government of India issued a public notice no. 16 dated 12.10.2021 providing guidelines for all users of groundwater for industrial purposes, wherein a Block wise Ground Water Resource Assessment 2020 has been mentioned for consideration of charges for water usage. The areas/cities where present harvesting units are being proposed are given at serial number 5947, 6437, 6461, 6470 and 6593 of the masterlist. They all need water resources to be recharged.
Further, a report on State of Ground Water in Uttar Pradesh, as per survey by Water Aid, which was released in the year 2021 is attached. It details the present ground water position of various cities of UP and also the fact that a lot has been planned yet very less is visible. It states that only 15% of rain water enriches the water table, 37.5% is run off to rivers and drains. The report depicts the amount of water extracted each year. The whole report is about the scarcity of water resources.
The public Notice, Master sheet and Water Aid Survey forms the basis of this project.
Under the Global Grant, 08 Rain Water Harvesting units shall be set up in educational Institutions, Temples and local bodies that have high daily usage of water and/or a sizeable constructed area and/or open ground. The Rain Water Harvesting System shall consist of a pit filled with natural materials like sand, gravel, silica sand and activated carbon. The water would be filtered through these natural materials and sent to underground first water table. A borewell upto first water table (preferably 100 feet) would be dug. Water from roof/field would be carried by water carrying pipes through gravitational force to the pit. A self propelling motor would send the water with pressure down the boring pipe @ 14000 liters of water per hour. A flow meter would record the amount of water harvested from the date of installation till the time of taking readings. This way precious rain water shall be used to enrich the underground water table. The maintenance or recurring cost of this system is less than USD 100 annually or practically NIL. The minimum quantity of rain water harvested would be around 5 million litres of water annually per site.
The cost of each unit is INR 3,00,000 or approx. 3950 USD.