Learn how to help recharge your local water source

A woman sheltering from heavy rain under an umbrella, UK.
takeaway rain graphic fall2017

Whether we’re washing clothes or watering the lawn, all the water we use in our homes is drawn from a nearby lake, river, reservoir, or aquifer.

These water sources are replenished naturally by precipitation, as rainwater fills streambeds and soaks into grasslands, fields, and forests. Hard surfaces, however— buildings, roads, parking lots, driveways, and the roofs over our heads—impede this natural process.

We can help recharge local water sources by allowing rain to water the ground where it falls. This can be done through simple efforts, such as directing downspouts and gutters toward shrubbery or trees, or collecting rain in a barrel for outside use.

A rain barrel captures and stores water from the downspout of a rooftop gutter that can be used—through a spigot at the bottom of the barrel—to water a lawn or flower beds.

Just think: Keeping the rain where it is meant to fall means more recharging of local water sources—and less wasteful rainwater runoff.

Check out more sustainable household tips.

Explore More

World Wildlife magazine provides an inspiring, in-depth look at the connections between animals, people and our planet. Published quarterly by WWF, the magazine helps make you a part of our efforts to solve some of the most pressing issues facing the natural world.

View all issues