CSE is constantly deluged with queries, opinions and ideas from people who are concerned about the prevailing water crisis and are keen to play an active role in managing water. The Sixteen model projects provide the answers, at least to some of them. These also act as effective tools to establish the fact that rainwater harvesting can be taken up and implemented successfully in urban centers, by all concerned individuals who are looking for a way to fulfill their own water needs.
As a part of the Centre for Science and Environment's (CSE) campaign to spread awareness about community based rainwater harvesting techniques, the centre has identified Sixteen model projects in Delhi, from among those that have been designed by it. CSE has helped in the process of implementation of these and has been monitoring their impact on a regular basis. These Sixteen model projects have been constructed by enterprising citizens who sought CSE's help to setup rainwater harvesting structures in their colonies and institutions. The structures have a distinctive geographical and geological characteristic; the Mira Model School model, for example, has been constructed on a sedimentary terrain and the Shri Ram School project is on a hilly terrain. They also feature different forms of rainwater harvesting - rooftop harvesting and surface water harvesting.
The following are the selected sites:
IMPACTS: CSE has been constantly monitoring changes in the water levels in its 11 model projects in Delhi and Gurgaon (Haryana). The impact of rainwater harvesting on the quality and quantity of groundwater in the location has been remarkable, proving beyond doubt that rainwater harvesting is one of the most effective tools to arrest the rapidly depleting groundwater reserves.