Late start to monsoon means rainwater harvesting woes

Monsoon rain scarce this summer

TUCSON, Ariz. (KOLD News 13) - Mother Nature is barely raining on our parade.

With monsoon season behind schedule, many have been left waiting for the water.

"It has been slow we’ve been anxious same as the plants we’ve been anxious for the monsoon to really get here.” said Joaquin Murrieta-Saldivar of Watershed Management Group:

At WMG’s Living Lab is a 10 thousand-gallon tank that is barely full but is slowing inching upright after the few inches of rain Wednesday, July 31.

“Prior to this storm this tank was completely dry so now we have probably just over 1,000 gallons captured. We can probably go back on rainwater now.” said Catlow Shipek of Watershed Management Group.

Which is good news, so they can stop paying for municipal water and use the rain for irrigation, drinking, even to prevent flooding.

"We’re looking at rain as a resource for water and that resource can actually do a lot of things. I mean we’re already drinking rainwater but pretty much we’re shaping the urban landscape with rainwater.” said Murrieta-Saldivar.

Over on the east side at Changemaker High School, their rain cisterns are seeing similar conditions and have been struggling this summer.

Science teacher Josh Ruddick says they needed that storm to get their gardens back growing and to get off municipal water.

"That was a good storm yesterday. That hit the east side really nicely I was very grateful for it.” said Ruddick.

Overnight, their cisterns are seeing a few hundreds of gallons of water. And even though it’s still a far cry from what they’re used too, they’re still finding a reason to celebrate what they have.

"So instead of being afraid of the rain lets celebrate it and make a good use of that,” said Murrieta-Saldivar.

Knowing that their road to more rain is going to be a long one.

"Well right now we only have 14 hundred gallons from just under a half an inch of rain so we have a ways to go.” said Shipek.

Copyright 2019 KOLD News 13. All rights reserved.