International workshop held on “Rain Water Harvesting and Ground Water Recharge In Developing Countries – HRD and technology Transfer”

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In order to deliberate on the importance of Rainwater Harvesting (RWH) and Ground Water Recharge (GWR) and the mechanisms for capacity building and transfer of technology in RWH and GWR practices to ensure potable water supply and improve groundwater level in the developing countries, the Centre for Science & Technology of the Non-Aligned and Other Developing Countries (NAM S&T Centre) in association with Maharashtra Knowledge Corporation Ltd. (MKCL) and Indian Consortium for Educational Transformation (I-CONSENT) organized a 4 days International Workshop on ‘Rainwater Harvesting and Ground Water Recharge in Developing Countries – HRD and Technology Transfer’ during 17-20 August 2009 at Pune, India. This workshop was held by the Centre as a major activity under the collaborative project on ‘Sustainable Rainwater Harvesting and Ground Water Recharge in Developing Countries – Human Resource Development and Technology Transfer’ partially supported by the Perez-Guerrero Trust Fund for Economic and Technical Cooperation among Developing Countries (PGTF) of the Group of 77.

The workshop was attended by 29 senior experts and professionals from 15 developing countries and 14 Indian participants. Dr. (Ms.) Tanuja Ariyananda, Director, represented the Lanka Rain Water Harvesting Forum of Sri Lanka.

The overall programme of the workshop was organized in seven Technical Sessions held on 17th and 18th August 2009 and a Concluding Session on 20th August. On 19th August 2009 a visit was organized to a model village known as ‘Hiware Bazar’, located ~150 km NE of Pune, where rainwater harvesting practices have made a remarkable progress in the prosperity of the village. About 15 years back, this village used to have poor agricultural production and faced a variety of problems due to acute water shortage and lowering underground water table that led to huge emigration of the residents. But with integrated watershed management including the Continuous Contour Trenching (CCT) method of rainwater harvesting, the village prospered with adequate water resources and agriculture rich land resulting in manifold increase in per capita income, almost cent percent literacy, reverse migration from cities, high level of sanitation and all round development in various spheres of life.

Each of the 15 foreign participants presented a country status report on RWH/GWR. Case studies were presented by six Indian participants, At the Concluding Session, a summary of workshop reports was presented by Dr. (Ms.) Tanuja Ariyananda of Sri Lanka. Mr. Salahuddin Saiphy of CSE highlighted various features of the training module and course material for the Trainers’ Training Programme proposed to be organized by the Centre for Science and Environment (CSE) in February 2010 as another important activity under the G-77/PGTF project on RWH/GWR. After several rounds of brainstorming, the participants unanimously adopted the ‘Pune Recommendations’. The workshop ended with the distribution of the Participation Certificates to the participants.

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