Our environment is progressively getting degraded because of over-exploitation of natural resources. In a degraded landscape with little or no tree cover, and subsequently little soil cover, rainwater is not able to percolate into the ground. We lose rich top soil with this running water, which flows away into the streams. It is a vicious cycle — no top soil, no vegetation, increased run off of water and further erosion of top soil – exacerbated by climate crisis resulting either in prolonged drought periods or sudden floods.
Well-designed water harvesting earthworks such as rainwater harvesting on roofs, ditches, ponds, swales and dams are the most effective way to channel water into productive use. The result can be increased food production, higher groundwater levels, reduced irrigation needs, reforestation and enhanced ecosystem resilience. These earthworks help to restore hydrological cycles with specific land-use techniques and biological resources, creating water security for people along with renewed viability for ecosystems.
Water Resilience Project
We are starting a water resilience project in 2019 thanks to the financial support of Visegrad Fund. We plan to offer a unique, practical, 5-day Water Earthworks workshop, in autumn 2019 that shows the main techniques that can be applied to conserve water and build soil on landscape level (rainwater collection and storage, ponds planning, keylines and ditch construction). Selected partners from each of the Visegrad countries are invited to learn about water retention techniques and spread the knowledge in their respective countries about water earthworks. Participants will understand the principles of permaculture design in earthworks: reading the site, interpreting contour maps and using surveying tools, placing elements in a design. The course will have strong practical component – we’ll rent a digger and make a real pond – and participants will be able to work with contractors to direct earth movers in action.
Later on we will design a water landscape and plant a water resilient, edible forest with nut species on a degraded area with children in November 2019. Participants will get to know diverse edible tree species, for which water catchment needs to be designed and water harvest measures implemented. Children and their parents will be taught during this event about different water conservation techniques.
Harmony of Culture Foundation from Poland
Zengő-Mozgó Egyesület from Hungary
Ranch Srbsko, s.r.o. from Czech Republic
The Society for the Sustainable Culture (STRUK) from Slovakia.
Water Earthworks Workshop
Save the date: September 30 – October 4
More information: very soon:-)