Rainwater Harvesting in Seattle Gains Momentum

nature-conservation-171401_640With the current drought emergency declared by Governor Inslee in May, RainBank Rainwater Systems has seen an increase in inquiries about designs and installations for rainwater collection systems from all over the Puget Sound region.

Seattle is topping the list of new customers who are either expanding existing systems, or are first time customers looking into design and installation. Even though Seattle Public Utilities has said they do not expect to see any water rationing, others are looking into that possibility. We all can do our part to conserve the municipal water supplies by only irrigating in the evening and having our cars washed at a facility that recycles its wash down water. Another way to conserve water is by checking for water leaks in our homes and businesses and teaching our families simple conservation techniques.

Of course, installing a rainwater catchment system will help conserve water, reduce stormwater runoff, and protect our lakes, streams, wetlands and aquifers for future generations. Seattle has a unique opportunity to lead the nation in water conservation due to our climate. With 36 inches of average annual rainfall including 3.5 inches average summer rainfall a well-designed system can produce and store enough water to support an average household. Here in Seattle, we do not see extreme cold temperatures during the winter months, so freeze protection of tanks and plumbing is relatively easy to address. Washington State Ecology has determined through study that most roof materials are safe for collecting rainwater for household use. King County Health is proactive in rainwater collection regulations and code writing.

Whether a small system designed for supplementary use, or a large system for whole house demand is desired – any amount of conservation can be achieved.

Ken Blair
A rainwater collection systems designer and consultant, Ken has designed and installed residential and commercial systems, primarily in the northwest United States for more than 10 years and, in 2014, began consulting and managing builds in other states. Ken is an accredited ARCSA Professional Designer / Installer and Life Member, the Northwest Regional ARCSA representative and advisor to its education committee and is available to speak about Rainwater Collection Systems design and builds.

Ken is a United States Navy veteran, having served on active duty during the Vietnam War era.

A career entrepreneur, Ken created a new business focus with a commercial dive company in Hawaii in the mid 1980′s to respond to and clean up oil spills, oil spill equipment training, service and maintenance for the oil co-op service industry. Ken is passionate about having a positive impact on the environment and is also a founding director of BANK-ON-RAIN (2011-2014), whose mission is to create grassroots solutions for rainwater collection for consumption and agriculture in developing areas of the planet.

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