Conventional urban water management approaches are struggling to meet the emerging challenges required for sustainability. New discourses on urban water management emphasize the need for a transformative change by moving to a system that manages a diversity of water sources and scales of infrastructure, through an integrative planning approach.
UrbanRain examines the opportunities and challenges regarding the planning for the up-scaling and expansion of rainwater harvesting (RWH) systems as socio-technical devices in order to enhance water management sustainability in urban areas of Europe; although, it is expected that its lessons and recommendations will have a wider, global impact.
The project promises high socio-economic value by:
Increasing the capacity to manage urban water resources and water use efficiency;
Reducing costs for wastewater treatment and disposal, and creating opportunities for low-cost maintenance of green spaces, gardens, etc.;
Opening up for innovative business potential over technical design, and competitiveness over costs of RWH systems;
Promoting learning on innovative forms of RWH between cities/communities;
Building a reflexive governance capacity for adaption to climate change, management of flood/drought occurrences, and ecological sustainability