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Rainwater Harvesting

Rainwater harvesting is the collection of rainwater, typically from roofs. The collected water is then stored either above (for the use in the garden) or below (for domestic use) the ground. In the UK rainwater can only be used as a second grade source of water. However, in other countries the collected water is used to replenish drinking water reservoirs.

Above the Ground System

This is the most common type of rainwater harvesting in the UK. It is fairly easy to set up. A water diversion kit is attached to the downward guttering pipe and the diverted rainwater is stored in a water butt. The collected water is then used to water your garden, or wash down your patios etc. To find more information on above the ground rainwater harvesting visit the Low Impact Living Initiative.  If you would like to save water even further, make sure that you use water for gardening as efficiently as possible.

Below the Ground System

This is a bit more involved than installing a water butt but is an excellent way how to be kinder to our limited water supplies and save some money on your water bills (if you are water metered). The UK Rainwater Harvesting Association has some useful section on frequently asked questions. Explanation of the ins and outs of the domestic below the ground system can be found at the Rainharvesting Systems website.

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