Dr. Khosrow Farahbakhsh, P.Eng, Assistant Professor

Room 212, Thornbourgh Building. Email: khosrowf@uoguelph.ca

With the diminishing quality and quantity of freshwater resources, municipalities are forced to search for alternate sources of freshwater. Harvesting rainwater provides a viable alternative to conventional water treatment and supply systems. Rainwater is relatively clean, can be used for a variety of purposes, and requires relatively low investment. With all these advantages it is surprising that rainwater harvesting has seen minimal utilization in Canadian communities, beyond limited collection and use for irrigation (rain barrels).

We are currently involved in a large research and development project entitled: " Evaluating the Feasibility and Developing Design Requirements and Tools for Large-scale Rainwater Harvesting in Ontario". The majority of the funding for this $255,000 project comes from Ontario Centers of Excellence (CRESTech), with additional funding from the Canadian Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC) and City of Guelph. Other partners providing in-kind support include the Reid's Heritage Group and Harvest homes. For more information on rainwater harvesting click here.

Currently MSc. candidates, Chantelle Leidl and Christopher Despins, successfully completed their MSc in May 2008.

A portion of Chris and Chantelle's theses was published by CMHC and is available on their website.

Currently, we are developing a design guidance manual, a one-day course, a design tool (software) and working with the Ministries of Municipal Affairs and Housing in Ontario and Alberta, CMHC, CWWA and a number of municipalities to develop further technical and regulatory capacity for large-scale rainwater harvesting. Stay tuned for more info.

If you wish to be involved in this project please contact me.