Kathmandu, 1st March, 2021 (Press Release):

The Centre for Integrated Urban Development, with support from WaterAid Nepal and The Coca Cola Foundation has handed over Rainwater Harvesting and Groundwater Recharge project to Rajdal Army Barrack. The collaborative project which commenced on January 2020 has successfully concluded on 28th Feb 2021 with a handover ceremony at the Rajdal Army Barrack, Lagankhel-Lalitpur in presence of Chiribabu Maharjan, Mayor, Lalitpur Metropolitan City.

Situated at the highest point of Patan City, Lagankhel area is a natural recharge zone where groundwater is recharged, thereby feeding community wells and stone spouts. The project has been executed with an objective of recharging groundwater in Lagankhel and its peripheral areas and to demonstrate this technology among wider communities.

51 recharge wells along with 51 filter chambers were constructed inside the premises of the barrack. The expected volume of potential water recharge, through these wells is 5 crore and 10 lakh liters annually. Additionally, to remove silt and sand from the surface runoffs, three desilting basins were also constructed in the area where runoff water is likely to carry dirt. One rain garden has also been constructed to demonstrate the efficacy of such initiatives towards groundwater recharge.

Alongside, motivational and awareness programs on groundwater recharge were conducted in the wider communities involving local authorities, civil society organizations and academic institutes.

Groundwater is one of the key sources of water in Kathmandu Valley. Groundwater is extracted through household and community wells and it is also obtained through stone spouts and spring outlets. Every monsoon, groundwater is recharged naturally when the rainwater is injected underground through porous soil surfaces and ponds. Additionally, water collected from nearby catchment areas and canals also significantly contribute in natural groundwater recharge and maintaining (or increasing) the groundwater level. This groundwater table is, however, depleting, due to two major reasons- sealing of the natural recharge zones and
unregulated extraction of groundwater.

The groundwater table can be maintained by artificial recharge process through construction of recharge wells which are simple and low-cost structures that can be promoted at strategic locations by concerned institutes or individual households. It can also be achieved by reviving community ponds. Groundwater recharge also manages storm water, thereby, reducing urban flooding.

Mayor of Lalitpur Metropolitan Chiri Babu Maharjan makes an address during the handover ceremony. (Image: Supplied)

Chiribabu Maharjan, Mayor- Lalitpur Metropolitan City was delighted to be the part of the event. He thanked CIUD, WaterAid, The Coca Cola Foundation and Rajdal Army barrack for implementing Rainwater Harvesting and Groundwater recharge project in Lalitpur Metropolitan city.

Ambuj Singh, Country Director of Coca-Cola Company in Nepal shared, “The Coca-Cola Company has made a pioneering commitment to replenish more water than what we use in our beverages. We have a responsibility to protect & replenish water resources, promote responsible water use and help to ensure access to clean water for all. Our partnership with WaterAid in Nepal is taking action to encourage and drive implementation of water conserving practices and other innovative projects that provides water supply to urban and rural communities.”