With wisdom and wit, Anupam Mishra talks about the amazing feats of engineering built centuries ago by the people of India's Golden Desert to harvest water. These structures are still used today -- and are often superior to modern water megaprojects.
You may not see a kund unless you travel to India, but water harvesting happens closer to home, too, using things like rain barrels. Investigate commercially-available water harvesting devices, and host a design competition for new solutions.
Humans aren’t the only organisms who need to harvest water to survive; a variety of plants and animal species have evolved ingenious ways to capture and store water where it’s scarce. Research examples like the Namibian fog-basking beetle, the Australian mulga tree, and kangaroo rats. Do they suggest any interesting applications for humankind?
Biomimicry is the practice of “taking a page” from nature in order to solve human problems. Learn more about it by watching the TED talk “Janine Benyus: Biomimicry in action” at http://www.ted.com/talks/lang/en/janine_benyus_biomimicry_in_action.html.
BBC News: The technology of saving India’s precious water supply (09/12/2011) http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-14847808
India’s Centre for Science and Environment: Community-based Water Management Initiatives http://www.rainwaterharvesting.org/Rural/Community_based_initiative.htm