Research Topic

Water Harvesting Methods in Drylands to Increase Climate Resilience

About this Research Topic

Drylands can experience brief periods of extreme rainfall, followed by long dry seasons; these extremes are being exacerbated by climate change. If rainfall can be captured and stored locally for use in the dry season, it can mean that community members (often women and children) do not have to travel as far every day to collect water. Storage can be in jars, tanks and reservoirs, or as managed aquifer recharge. A variety of techniques is being used for this globally, including check dams, sand dams, subsurface dams, rock catchments and percolation ponds. Some are indigenous techniques that have worked successfully for millennia; some are modern techniques that have been implemented more recently. There is great potential for South-South learning.

Water harvesting is being widely practiced by local communities, NGOs and local governments as a response to unreliable rainfall and a changing climate. Techniques are often cited as being cost-effective and easy to manage without much of an evidence base. Evaluations of techniques against hydraulic, hydrogeological, social or economic criteria are infrequent. This topic will gather together research papers from a variety of disciplines to present a holistic understanding of water harvesting practices. These will come from drylands across the world. Some will be indigenous, some will have been developed and implemented only recently; some will provide water for a single household, some for a whole city.

In this Research Topic, we seek manuscripts on the following topics:

• Conceptual and numerical models of water harvesting structures (surface water or groundwater);
• Impact of water harvesting on the health and wellbeing of local communities;
• Economic assessment of water harvesting;
• Water quality implications of water harvesting;
• South-South transfer of water harvesting techniques.


Keywords: Rainwater Harvesting, Semi-Arid, Managed Aquifer Recharge, Water Resources, Community Water Supply


Important Note: All contributions to this Research Topic must be within the scope of the section and journal to which they are submitted, as defined in their mission statements. Frontiers reserves the right to guide an out-of-scope manuscript to a more suitable section or journal at any stage of peer review.

Drylands can experience brief periods of extreme rainfall, followed by long dry seasons; these extremes are being exacerbated by climate change. If rainfall can be captured and stored locally for use in the dry season, it can mean that community members (often women and children) do not have to travel as far every day to collect water. Storage can be in jars, tanks and reservoirs, or as managed aquifer recharge. A variety of techniques is being used for this globally, including check dams, sand dams, subsurface dams, rock catchments and percolation ponds. Some are indigenous techniques that have worked successfully for millennia; some are modern techniques that have been implemented more recently. There is great potential for South-South learning.

Water harvesting is being widely practiced by local communities, NGOs and local governments as a response to unreliable rainfall and a changing climate. Techniques are often cited as being cost-effective and easy to manage without much of an evidence base. Evaluations of techniques against hydraulic, hydrogeological, social or economic criteria are infrequent. This topic will gather together research papers from a variety of disciplines to present a holistic understanding of water harvesting practices. These will come from drylands across the world. Some will be indigenous, some will have been developed and implemented only recently; some will provide water for a single household, some for a whole city.

In this Research Topic, we seek manuscripts on the following topics:

• Conceptual and numerical models of water harvesting structures (surface water or groundwater);
• Impact of water harvesting on the health and wellbeing of local communities;
• Economic assessment of water harvesting;
• Water quality implications of water harvesting;
• South-South transfer of water harvesting techniques.


Keywords: Rainwater Harvesting, Semi-Arid, Managed Aquifer Recharge, Water Resources, Community Water Supply


Important Note: All contributions to this Research Topic must be within the scope of the section and journal to which they are submitted, as defined in their mission statements. Frontiers reserves the right to guide an out-of-scope manuscript to a more suitable section or journal at any stage of peer review.

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Submission Deadlines

29 January 2021 Manuscript
26 February 2021 Manuscript Extension

Participating Journals

Manuscripts can be submitted to this Research Topic via the following journals:

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Topic Editors

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Submission Deadlines

29 January 2021 Manuscript
26 February 2021 Manuscript Extension

Participating Journals

Manuscripts can be submitted to this Research Topic via the following journals:

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