More than 100 people this week discussed ways of devising a new national strategy to harvest rainwater in towns and settlements in the Kathmandu Valley and other parts of Nepal.
The meeting on Monday and Tuesday, was organized by UN-HABITAT in partnership with the Government and the Municipal Association of Nepal, NGO Forum for Urban Water and Sanitation, Water Aid Nepal and International Rainwater Harvesting Alliance (IRHA), Geneva.
Although Nepal has considerable water resources, it faces a water crisis both in terms of quantity and quality in many urban and rural areas. The meeting drew more than 100 delegates from National Government Departments, NGOs, professional associations, financing institutions, banks and international organizations including WHO and IRHA.
Policy makers were briefed on the potential and viability of rainwater harvesting as a decentralized approach towards mitigating the water crisis in Nepal. The delegates unanimously recommended a call for action to promote rainwater harvesting. Calling for other measures to mitigate water shortages, improve the distribution and delivery system and enhance institutional and managerial efficiency, they also sought legal provisions to ensure that rainwater tanks are incorporated with new buildings.
The member of the National Planning Commission told participants that it was committed to incorporate specific provisions for promoting rainwater harvesting in the country. The Director General of the Department of Urban Development and Building Construction said all Government buildings would have appropriate rainwater harvesting systems.