An Alternative Water Management for irrigation and household
The first successful pioneer project of groundwater bank was innitiated in Nong Kai Province by Abbot Saman Siripanyo, he was sent to Texas USA as Buddhist Ambassador Mission in 1981 during that period Texas was facing serious drought, the local authority has to find mean to alleviate problem by recharging rainfall into the ground to establish subsurface reservoir. Coming back to Thailand in 1994 Abbot Saman Siripanyo started conduct subsurface reservoir called "groundwater bank" at his temple in Muang District Nong Kai Province. His project created wave of successful that followed by individuals and many local administration organization. Tam Bon Kow Kam, Nam Yeun District of Ubon Rajthani is one of the popular examples that Rotary Club of Sakon Nakhon made a study tour to learn an experience in 2017 and started pioneer project with local administration in Ban Pan District and Muang District in dry season 2018. At the begining it was not easy to convince the benefit of groundwater bank to public but as the time goes by many successful cases of drought alleviation are recognized by seeing as believing, many individuals and public sector like local administration and department of groundwater resources are conducting the same principle.
An alternative water management technique to recharge rainwater and or used household water to the unsaturated zone below plant roots known as unconfined aquifer, it is technically called man-made underground water reservoir or underground water bank. They are classified into 2 types namely “close system” and “open system” However groundwater bank is shallow well not the deep well
Rainfall is stored in the unconfided aquifer as groundwater bank
Comparision of groundwater bank (shallow well) with the deep well (confined aquifer)
Types of Groundwater Bank
There are 2 types of groundwater bank known as close system and open system
Minimize water logging caused by rainwater or used household water in the community as well as enhance water harvesting and water saving for small farm activities during dry season. The close system acts like water trap it can be constructed as borehole, long-pit or any characters that can harvest water and recharging into the permeable zone or water bearing rock
How to do
1.Dig a pit diameter 1.5 - 2.00 m and depth of 1.5 - 2.00 m, fill with large size rock or gravel or broken brick and install 1.5 - 2.00 inch PVC pipe as air vent
2.cover the rock filled pit with sand filter made of plastic net
3.topped the plastic net with small size gravel
4.Rainwater is ponding and seeping into the ground through close system groundwater bank
Recharging run-off to the unconfined aquifer by farm pond (water harvesting pond) equipped with shaft (borehole) to force water into the permeable rock and created underground reservoir. This system is very useful for irrigated agriculture as well as minimizing large scale water logging.
How to do
1.Construct a farm pond with shaft or borehole down to the permeable rock or unconfined aquifer
2.Rainfall during wet season will fill-up the pond and seeping down to the permeable rock to create underground reservoir
3.More number of the ponds in the neigbouring area are recommended to create large scale underground reservoir
1. 1. Maximum utilization of rainwater for community uses and irrigated agriculture
2. 2.Minimize water logging in the household and community area, thus reduced the risk of mosquito infected diseases such as dengue fever and malaria as well as enhancing environmentally friendly landscape
3. 3.Reducing inflow of contaminated water to the natural lake or reservoir
Solar pump is recommeded for the remoted area
Grow rice with less water is one of the best friend to groundwater bank
Groundwater bank with drip irrigation is recommeded for high value crops
Water from groundwater bank fits very well with less water fish farming known as Biofloc System
Groundwater bank is good friend of agroforestry
If the water table is maintained at 2.5 - 3 meters during dry season due to the impact of groundwater bank, water will be avalilable to plants through the subsurface irrigation called capillary action.
Advantages of groundwater bank
1. They are appropriated technology with very low construction cost as well as operation and maintenance cost
2. Environmentally and socially friendly project
3. Strengthening local participation and community development
Rotary Club of Sakon Nakhon (Rotary International District 3340) and groundwater bank
Water conservation is one of the objectives of Rotary International, thus groundwater bank was undertaken by Rotary Club of Sakon Nakhon since 2017 many close system and open system of groundwater bank have been conducting in Sakon Nakhon and other provinces in north and northeast regions of Thailand. We have well trained staffs to promote this innovation by means of on-site demonstration and training course.