Newspaper that inspires change. Breaking stories that shake the world. Be informed, Don't Settle for Fake News.

feat shape 1
feat shape 2
feat shape 3

Central Texans turning to rainwater collection amid severe drought

The demand for rainwater collection tanks is increasing in Central Texas due to a lack of consistent rain. One farmer is on a months-long waitlist to get one.

In the drought-stricken region of Central Texas, rainwater collection tanks have become increasingly popular as a solution to the lack of consistent rainfall. One local business has reported a surge in demand for these tanks, with one farmer even being placed on a months-long waitlist to acquire one.

Kathleen Mooney, the owner of EIEIO Farm in Wimberley, is among those turning to rainwater harvesting. Her well ran dry earlier in the spring, leaving her in need of water for her crops. She now finds herself on a three to four month waitlist to have a tank installed.

Mooney has heard from friends who have rainwater collection systems, and they have marveled at the benefits. Not only do they never run out of water during the drought, but they also notice improvements in the quality of their skin and hair after showering with rainwater. They require less moisturizer and feel that their skin is silky soft.

While she awaits the installation of her tank, Mooney has resorted to collecting water from her HVAC system and using it for various purposes. She gives some of the water to her chickens, waters her landscaping and indoor plants, and plans to collect rainwater from her chicken coop in barrels. She eagerly anticipates the next big downpour and is excited about the possibility of rain throughout September.

Mooney is not alone in her reliance on rainwater collection. Ron Van Sickle, the CEO and Founder of CQure Water, has observed a significant increase in business along I-35. Many people are seeking alternatives to their wells, even if they haven't completely dried up. Van Sickle's company sets up systems that allow individuals to have three sources of water: city water, rainwater, and stored well water.

Van Sickle explains that while an inch of rain may not have a significant impact on an aquifer, it can make a substantial difference in a rainwater tank. The tank immediately recharges with one inch of water, effectively becoming a valuable resource.

Despite facing limitations due to factors like the heat, Van Sickle's business has grown by over 20% compared to the previous year. He estimates that an average 30,000 gallon tank can supply water to a single-family home for approximately ten months. However, there is a growing trend towards larger tanks, with 50,000 gallon tanks becoming more common.

The cost of a rainwater tank, including site preparation, ranges from around $22,000 for a 30,000 gallon tank to the low $30,000s to $45,000 for a complete system that may require additional work such as cutting through rock and extensive collection piping.

While the demand for rainwater collection tanks continues to rise, those in the industry face challenges due to the heat and other factors. Kathleen Mooney encourages others to show gratitude to those working in these conditions by offering them cold drinks or a smile.

Share With Others

Comments on Central Texans turning to rainwater collection amid severe drought