International Conference on Rain Water Cistern Systems
"Rainwater Catchment for Future Generations"
Keelung, Taiwan, R.O.C. - August 1991
10: Country Reports and Future Outlooks
Rain Water Harvesting
Systems In Southern Africa
University of Natal, South Africa
Poor water supplies and sanitation services continue to be critical problems
in the less developed rural areas of southern Africa despite considerable effort
to improve and expand access. It is widely recognized that safe, easily available
water supplies provided in a form acceptable to the communities concerned are
essential for rural development.
Most rural communities depend on local sources of water which are available
naturally - river water, open wells and springs - and these are frequently polluted.
Not nearly enough use is made of rain water collection systems.
This paper describes the research and development work conducted on rain water
harvesting systems in southern Africa in recent years. A case study is referred
to for the purpose of illustrating the approach being used to meet the water needs
of communities in some less developed rural areas for domestic as well as agricultural
use, with particular reference to the introduction of simple, cost effective rain
water harvesting technologies. The approach emphasizes the need for attention
to be given to community involvement, through appropriate institutional arrangements,
in choosing suitable technologies.
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