Centre for Science and Environment (CSE), a New Delhi-based NGO is providing technical expertise to individuals and organisations interested in undertaking rainwater harvesting. This section is a glance at some of the latest designs provided by CSE

By implementing rainwater harvesting system in two of their factories located in Dharuhera and Gurgaon, Haryana, Hero Honda has set an example for others to follow. In relative terms, although the automobile sector is not the largest consumer of water, 75 per cent of their requirements are met from groundwater sources.

CSE provided the designs. In Dharuhera, the rooftop water from the administration, main factory, canteen and research and development buildings is diverted to six recharge wells through separate pipelines. In Gurgaon, roof runoff from the canteen, SPD block, and the new engine plant buildings are diverted to four recharge wells of 2m x 3 m and a depth of 30 m. In 2002, the work in both the units was undertaken by their engineering section without disturbing the complex's landscape.

For further information:
Hero Honda Limited,
Sec 33, Gurgaon 122001;
Tel: 42131

A temple on the banks of river Ganga.
Veer Bhadra Mishra, chairman of Sankat Mochan Foundation (SMF), a Varanasi-based non-governmental organisation (NGO), is the force behind pioneering this initiative in Varansai. Centre for Science and Environment (CSE), a New Delhi-based NGO is providing technical expertise to not only revive an old temple tank but to implement rooftop water harvesting in the temple premises as well. The project has recently been taken up.

This ancient temple occupies an area of 3.43 hectares that includes four open wells and one earthen tank. About 300 years ago, this temple tank was constructed during the period of sant Tulsidas. The earthen structure can store 360 liters of water. But due to neglect, its three sidewalls have collapsed, thus reducing its water holding capacity. It is currently not in use.

CSE is providing designs to reconstruct the walls around the tank. Plans to divert rainwater, collected from the rooftop, to percolation pits for direct groundwater recharge purposes has also been developed.
Speaking about the reasons for taking up these initiatives, Mishra said, "It is better to harvest rainwater instead of allowing it flow to the sewage drains. Moreover the municipality supply is only for limited three hours and even that is not regular. The rejuvenation of the temple tank will act as a major recharge source not only for the wells within the temple premises but for the adjacent areas as well."

The message is clear - harvest and respect rain even when river Ganga is your neighbour.

A residence at Vasant Vihar, New Delhi
For most of us, rights come before duties, but not for Brigadier Jagdev Singh, a resident of Vasant Vihar, New Delhi. He understood the importance of rainwater harvesting and decided to implement it in his two-storied flat, irrespective of the negative attitude of others around him. Centre for Science and Environment (CSE), a New Delhi-based non-governmental organisation gave technical support to his willingness to conserve the environment.

In June 2001, the water management committee of the Vasant Vihar's Resident Welfare Association invited CSE to give a presentation on rainwater harvesting. Brig. Singh, like many others was negatively affected by the declining water table. He said, "I had two tubewells with plenty of water, but in due course of time they got dried up." He continued, "People are careless towards environment. Though the amount required is nominal, people still are reluctant to contribute, as they think that these are not their problem." He, unlike many others, decided to take action.

A proposal was prepared by CSE for reviving the dried up tubewells. In the plan, the casing pipe of the tube well is slotted, so as to facilitate easy recharging. (see box 1: Site plan) Filter beds comprising of sand and gravel are provided to take care of silt and sediments. (see box 2: The recharge structure) The entire plan, for an area of 285 square meters with an annual average water harvesting potential of 1.47 lakh litres, was completed within a cost of Rs 7,500.

While speaking about the expected benefits, he said, "I hope that the water table will go up." His hopes will come true, if few others keep joining this conservation drive everyday.

For further information:
Brig. Jagdev Singh
A-11/4, Vasant Vihar,
New Delhi

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