Saving Water Never Felt So Good!


This modified version of a post that first appeared on Backyard Decor Ideas is republished here with permission. It is not a paid ad. Check the links following the article to review my previous posts about rain barrels and why I think their use should be promoted.

Right now, there are 600 million people in the world who are living with water-scarcity problems. According to Population Action International, by the year 2025, there will be between 2.7 and 3.2 billion people who are living in water-scarce or water-stressed conditions. Two contributors to this problem are:

(1) Global warming is turning fertile land into arid deserts, and
(2) Man-made creations are altering ground-water run-off patterns.

Water Savings

Each North American consumes an average of 350 liters of water inside the home each day. Even with city watering restrictions, this water usage often increases by up to 50% in the summer, due to lawn and garden watering! There are parts of the world that do not have sufficient drinking water, yet we are wasting valuable drinking water on our yards. Treated water does not provide any added benefit for plants.

This problem can be resolved through the use of a rain barrel. A rain barrel hooks up to the downspout of your eavestrough to collect and store rain water until it is needed for your lawn and garden, thus saving valuable drinking water.

Groundwater Runoff

Under normal circumstances, the majority of rainfall soaks into vegetation and slowly flows underground. This natural filtration helps to remove debris and pollutants from the water. The natural process of water soaking into the earth is destroyed when we cover the land with buildings, roads, and parking lots. Ground-run off from downspouts carries sediments and pollutants that, without natural filtration, can clog streams, reduce oxygen in the water, and poison aquatic ecosystems.

To further compound the problem, many sewage systems combine household sewage with storm water. Older sewage systems cannot handle large volumes of water. Thus, after heavy rain, sewage gets dumped, untreated, into rivers and lakes.

One way you can eliminate harmful stormwater run-off is to invest in a rain barrel. In addition to conserving water, rain barrels help the environment by reducing harmful water run-off. And for those who have breath-taking gardens, rain barrels can also help to accentuate your backyard décor.

Rain Barrels Can Look Elegant

The depicted Agua and Cascata rain barrels are very elegantly designed, with smooth clay-like contours, and with elegant planters on top. While designed to look like terracotta, these rain barrels are made of a thick, durable, lightweight plastic. They include standard features such as corrosion-proof screen guards (to keep mosquitos out), and overflow valves to allow for multiple unit hookups.

photo photo
The Cascata rain barrel (65 gallons) comes complete with a removable-crown planter/bird bath, a brass spigot, and an optional pump. The Agua rain barrel (50 gallons) combines the timeless aesthetic elegance of ceramics with the enduring longevity of modern plastics.

The Agua and Cascata rain barrels are made in Cambridge, Canada and are designed to withstand a Canadian winter. Both include lifetime warranties on their enclosures. For more information about these rain barrels, go to, or call 519-624-2554.

Other Links:
2006/10/10 – FMBS: Election platform re rain barrels
2007/07/28 – FMBS: Hamilton Rain Barrels
2007/12/08 – FMBS: Wastewater Tax Increase


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One Response to “Saving Water Never Felt So Good!”

  1. robert v sobczak Says:

    I noticed in our summer trip to Belgium that everyone used water barrels. That’s not the case here in Florida, even though we get more rain. In Belgium its a steady slower rain, and during the entire year … not to mention that gardening is more common … a way of life.

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