Rain Barrels in Wisconsin

Save your community's water resources, one drop at a time.

by Lisa Munniksma
RainReserve Community Rain Barrel Program

Sure, everyone knows it’s a good idea to conserve water and to collect rainwater for reuse. Not everyone has the inclination to build or knows where to purchase a rain barrel, though.

Recognizing that sustainability needs to be a community effort, Sustain Dane in Dane County, Wis., began installing rain barrels at residences. By the end of 2008, community members had purchased more than 3,000 rain barrels and volunteered countless hours for rain-barrel installation and construction through the RainReserve Community Rain Barrel Program.

Connecting this many community households to rainwater collection and reuse is no small effort. The RainReserve Community Rain Barrel Program can be replicated in any community with interest from nonprofits, local government or other organizations. Since instituting the program, Dane County has reduced storm-water runoff and preserved the aquifer, built community awareness of water conservation and water-quality issues, and created revenue to support environmental efforts.

Sustain Dane supporters will work with other groups to bring the Rain Barrel Program to communities across the country. Interested? Contact Sustain Dane at 608-316-6844 or rainbarrel@sustaindane.org

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