Harvesting rainfall to avoid catastrophes

By Landry Ninteretse

The recent floods in April caused a lot damages and victims in different parts of the country. This situation is alarming and regrettable when we all know the damages of famine due to lack of rain, especially in the Northern and Eastern part of Burundi these last ten years.

However, rain should not be considered as source of catastrophic scenes. Harvesting rainfall is probably a credible alternative to avoid catastrophes and boost agriculture. The technology consists of collecting and storing rainwater for an agricultural or domestic use. The idea may seem crazy or unrealistic but in countries where the technology has been experienced, it has produced several benefits and revolutionized lives.

Harvesting rainfall requires a minimum of knowledge, investment and commitment of communities supported by government, NGOs or private sector and all the stakeholders involved in sustainable development. Technically, harvesting rainfall requires rooftop gutter to collect the rainfall, the building of storage tank and trenches to collect water of irrigation and livestock.

The cost of this technology is very modest compared to its advantages. When implemented successfully, harvesting rainfall may reveal itself as an innovative solution not only for the problems caused by floods but also as a response to the agriculture sector. Furthermore, a large number of children would no longer need to miss out on school passing hours and hours searching for water.

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