On Site Event Preparation PowerPoint Part II

On-Site Challenge: Water
Harvesting Terms and Concepts
Quiz 2
(Use the terms & concepts list in the MESA
Day Handbook along with the “Rainwater
Harvesting for Drylands” resource book)
The upper limit of a body of
groundwater is called a
__________ __________
ANSWER: water table
• Water harvesting
structures such as berms &
basins, holding ponds, &
reservoirs hold the water
in place allowing it to
percolate into the ground
thereby raising the local
water table.
• Beaver dams raise the local
water table too!
The wearing away of land by gravity, wind
and water (& often a combination of these)
is called _____?
ANSWER: Erosion
A beach cliff has collapsed due
to a combination of water and
gravitational erosion.
Topsoil is being eroded away by wind
True or False:
Erosion can be intensified by human
land use practices?
Example: Without vegetation or other land use
techniques to hold the soil in place, this roadside is
quickly eroding due to water and gravity.
Look around your town for examples of erosion
control features or places that need erosion control.
TRUE OR FALSE: Non-potable water is
safe for human consumption?
• Though not drinkable, non-potable water (also called
reclaimed water) is useful!
Where are you creating non-potable water at home &
school? Discuss ways you could re-use this water.
Monte Sagrado Hotel in Tao, NM uses reclaimed water to
create a lush oasis at their resort.
Use of reclaimed water for
artificial snow in ski resorts. Is
this a good use? Research & find
out why it is controversial!
An open or closed structure used for
storing water is called a ___________?
ANSWER: Reservoir
• Reservoirs often have multiple purposes: such as water
storage, flood control, recreation, and hydroelectricity
Fishing in Abiquiu Lake
Jet-skiing at Elephant Butte
• Discuss how you would incorporate good design
planning and multiple uses for a reservoir if you were
in charge of engineering a major water-harvesting plan.
Reservoir comes from the French word
meaning “store house”
Elephant Butte Reservoir in Southern, NM- constructed between 1911-1916
Abiquiu Reservoir in Northern NMconstructed 1963
The surface area that rainwater lands
on and is then diverted for beneficial
use is called a __________ _________
Rainwater landing on a
manmade surface area
Rainwater being held for later use
ANSWER: Catchment Surface
• NOTE: Catchment Surface areas can be man made, like the
roof in the previous slide, or natural; like the hillsides that
funnel water toward the check dam below. Larger
landscape areas that collect water are also called
This diagram shows use of natural
landscape features and urban features
in a large scale water harvesting plan.
A more temperate or extreme localized climate
created by the shelter or exposure of adjacent
landscape features or buildings is called a
ANSWER: Microclimate
• Notice the very different vegetation on these two
hillsides right next to each other! Discuss what you
think is happening?
Shade and exposure to the sun can create
a microclimate on a property. In general,
which side of the house in a hot New
Mexico desert community could provide a
cooler microclimate (north, south, east,
ANSWER: north side; this side will
have the most shade throughout the
Think About It…
Discuss how knowledge of a property or area
microclimate can be applied to a rainwater
harvesting plan?
How can the water that is harvested on a
property be more wisely if you consider
microclimates on the property?
Water that only flows seasonally or
during and just after storms is called
__________ ________ _____
ANSWER: ephemeral water flow
PHOTO: USGS Scientists installing
instrumentation in an ephemeral stream at Abo
Arroyo, New Mexico, to monitor streamflow and
calculate recharge
________ ______ is the rate at which
water naturally fills or replenishes an
ANSWER: natural recharge
There a various ways that
scientists calculate
natural recharge rates.
Other factors must be
considered when
calculating the rate such
as evapo-transporation,
surface runoff, vegetation
absorption of water,
pumping of water in the
local area, and more.
Water can be recharged naturally or artificially.
Artificial groundwater recharging
thru pumping water back into
the aquifer.
Passive artificial groundwater recharging by
allowing the water to collect in a trench and
percolate slowly into the ground.
A comprehensive water harvesting plan may involve
both collecting water in holding tanks and cisterns for
personal use AND designing areas to collect runoff to
recharge ground water!
The highest short-term volume of
expected water flow is called:
A) Peak charge
B) Peak surge
C) Peak regeneration
Summer monsoon season drops a
large volume of rain in a very short
time frame. Photo: Animas Creek
near Williamsburg, NM after
rainstorm 9-13-2013
ANSWER: B) Peak Surge
• This homeowner installed a cistern that could
collect the peak surge volume of water that could
potentially fall during a rainfall “event” in their area.
A grey-water system that collects all household greywater (kitchen sinks, bathroom sinks, washing
machine, shower) should be designed to handle the
peak surge, or greatest amount of water that could
come thru the system at once.
SLOPE is the measurable ________
indicating a change in elevation
from one point to another.
A) altitude
B) steepness
C) slippage
ANSWER: B) Steepness
This yard has
a very steep
You are creating a water harvesting plan for a
business site that has a very steep slope and
can receive up to an inch of rain in a 1 hour
storm. Which item/s do you need to consider
for your plan?
A) Designing a plan to address erosion due to the steep
B) Designing a plan that slows down the speed of water
running down the steep slope.
C) Designing a plan that can accommodate the amount
of water that will fall on the steep slope.
• The steepness of the slope will increase the speed that
the water flows downhill and potentially cause greater
• The same amount of potential rainfall (up to one inch in
an hour) will still land on the site, therefore the amount
of water to accommodate remains the same.

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