This episode weaves through a number of stories of rainwater harvesting from around the world. This episode focuses more on the community aspect of water harvesting and addresses the question of how large scale water harvesting projects involving multiple stakeholders and communities actually happen? Brad has initiated his own extensive projects, as well as visited many others throughout the world. Please enjoy this lesson on catalyzing community and healing hydrology.
Links referenced in the episode:
Check out Brad's newly revised, full-color editions of his "Rainwater Harvesting for Drylands and Beyond" books available direct from Brad at deep discount at:
Check out the Online Rainwater Harvesting Course featuring Brad's work and books:
Roman- and Byzantine-era Cisterns of the Past Reviving Life in the Present:
Revolving Community Loans for “Water From Allah”:
Cisterns of Old Jeddah, Saudi Arabia:
Harvesting Air-Conditioning Condensate in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia, and Beyond:
Building Bridges project where residents of adjoining neighborhoods came together to proactively identify the need for, and solutions to, enhance inter-neighborhood connections by foot, bicycle, wheelchair, skateboard, etc.
Desert Harvesters work to grow and utilize more native wild food plants where we live, work, and play
Brad Lancaster full bio:
Since 1993 I’ve run a successful permaculture consulting, design, and education business focused on integrated and sustainable approaches to landscape design, planning, and living. And as I live in a dryland environment, water harvesting has long been one of my specialties and a passion. Through my business I’ve been able to share this passion and many of the fun innovations and daily adventures that come about from striving to live more sustainably and comfortably in the Sonoran Desert. At home my brother and I harvest about 100,000 gallons of rainwater a year on a 1/8-acre urban lot and adjoining right-of-way. This harvested water is then turned into living air conditioners of food-bearing shade trees, abundant gardens, and a thriving landscape incorporating wildlife habitat, beauty, edible and medicinal plants, and more. Such sheltering landscapes can cool buildings by up to 20° F (11° C), reduce water and energy bills, and require little more than rainwater to thrive. Outside the home, I have helped others do the same, enabling clients to create ephemeral springs, raise the level of water in their wells, and shade and beautify neighborhood streets by harvesting their street runoff in adjacent tree wells.
But this is just the beginning. Water is the bait to entice you to see, connect with, and help enhance more of the greater whole. In this spirit, we also passively and actively harvest the sun for free and clean heat, light, and power. We expand and design shade in sync with the sun’s seasonally changing path across the sky, so that shade cools us in summer, but not in winter. Passive ventilation and wind harvesting boosts this free summer cooling. Fun, easy, dynamic stuff that generates more life—our true community health and wealth.