Rainwater harvesting is simply the capture, diversion and storage of rainwater for plant irrigation or other uses. Rainwater harvesting can take place on many levels including large scale landscapes such as schools or commercial sites and small scale landscapes such as individual households. Simple harvesting systems consist of rain barrels that collect roof runoff for simple outdoor irrigation. More complex pumped systems involve large above ground or buried cisterns that store water collected from the roof. This water is then plumbed into the house, either as a replacement or supplement to the standard municipal water supply.
Rainwater harvesting offers many benefits for individuals, communities and the environment. The more rainwater we harvest the less we need to withdraw from lakes, rivers and the ground through the municipal water supply. This means that less energy is required to deliver and treat water, and consequently less greenhouse gas emissions are created by power and treatment plants. Moreover, rainwater harvesting allows for storage of water for when it’s needed and reduces erosion and property flooding. In addition, rainwater is friendlier for plants and gardens than municipal water. It is warm, soft and chlorine-free.
RiverSides strongly advocates rainwater harvesting as a feasible technology in Toronto or any other urban landscapes. With the increasing costs of water and energy, rainwater harvesting is economically viable and environmentally sound. Rain harvesting promotes water conservation in the wake of looming global climate changes that may put stress on water resources globally and locally.
To initiate awareness around the subject of rainwater harvesting, RiverSides is frequently holding seminars and workshops to discuss the benefits and barriers to rainwater harvesting in Toronto.
To view more information about the seminar and workshop see the Rain Harvesting Seminars page.
Two Wheels Green Delivery
Get your rain barrel delivered on a bike!
This green and carbon-free delivery is available to residents in Toronto's downtown (Pape to the east, Eglinton to the north and Keele to the west).