Most of Canada has never experienced a water shortage, which usually affect areas that experience extreme temperatures. Ontario alone has a large portion of the fresh water available in the world, so rain barrels aren’t broadly considered for home use, unlike other parts of the world where fresh water is scarce.
Even if you don’t live in a parched area of the world, there are still important reasons for considering a rain barrel for your home, even it’s not the most decorative addition to your home.
Reducing the stress on water systems
Cities that have high levels of precipitation rely on a robust drainage system, but the truth is the infrastructure may not always be there.
When the amount of water is manageable, excess water is collected and delivered to the appropriate facility, otherwise the risk of flood is imminent. Flooding causes damage to buildings and can lead to unsanitary living conditions. Installing a rain barrel will hold back the amount of water entering the watershed, every time it rains.
Using water directly
Water goes through a cycle of collection, processing, and delivery. When it rains, the water travels to a treatment plant where it’s cleaned and ready for consumption.
By using a rain barrel, you can save the water for use later on. For example, you don’t have to use drinkable water on the lawn – instead you can just use regular rainwater to keep your grass green. Less energy is used this way, and you’ll be increasing the amount of plants in your city by cultivating a thriving garden.
Watersheds need protection
Some rain water flows down the storm drain while others go into streams and rivers. While water is necessary for nature, it can have a detrimental effect as well. Runoff water collects all sort of particles, both natural and artificial. Pollutants such as fertilizers, pesticides, road salt, paint from buildings, automotive fluids, and others can find their way into these streams and rivers, which are bad for wildlife and plants.
Excess water can also lead to erosion of rivers banks, and too much structural change can destroy the pathway of the water, isolating certain parts of the watershed so that it dries up. During other parts of a dry season, having your own water source when water isn’t as plentiful puts less stress on natural bodies of water.
For more information on the benefits of going green, be sure to visit the Green City Plumber blog each week for new tips and tricks!