ANF: Rain Barrels Save Money

Money is tight; jobs are scarce. Tap water needs to be treated, pumped, and distributed, which requires energy to process. Energy costs money. Rain barrels provide a way to supply water to your garden or wash a vehicle, and never turn on the spigot in the home. You will save money on your water bill. You are also helping the environment when you use rain barrels because:

~~less water is available to ‘runoff’ in a storm event and create erosion,
~~less drinking water is used, so you are actually saving drinking water,
~~rain water is available during periods of droughts, and
~~you use less energy to process the water.

Recent participants at a Rain Barrel Workshop at the Warren Mall learned how to construct their own rain barrel from parts available at local hardware stores. Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection granted funds to the Warren County Conservation District and the Conewango Creek Watershed to conduct the workshop, with assistance from hydrologist Chuck Keeports of the Allegheny National Forest. Karen Solarno of the Warren Mall kindly offered workshop space free of charge for the day. Debby Hornburg shared how the rain barrel design will keep out mosquitos and larvae to reduce any chance of West Nile virus.

Construction of a rain barrel requires a plastic barrel, a hand drill, hardware cloth, glue, and a spigot. Attendees at the recent workshop constructed their own rain barrel which they got to take home at the end of the workshop. So, what if you couldn’t attend this rain barrel workshop? The Warren County Conservation District plans to sell rain barrel kits for $80 or completed rain barrels for $105 in July. Contact Jean Gomory at the Warren County Conservation District to reserve a rain barrel. Barrels or kits purchased must be picked up at the Hatch Run Conservation Demonstration Area on Hatch Run Road at a pre-arranged day and time yet to be announced.

Pictured, Jean Gomory, Gisele Weese, and Tom Kollar work on a rain barrel.

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