Rockland installs rain barrels in effort to save water

Mon, 06/12/2023 - 4:15pm

    ROCKLAND — Look for the rain barrels that the City of Rockland has installed throughout the City this spring. By capturing stormwater before it hits the sewer system, rain barrels can help reduce sewer discharges during heavy rains, according to The City of Rockland, in a news release. Captured water will be used to water public gardens in the summer.

    Eleven rain barrels were provided by the UMaine Extension and Maine Sea Grant and installed on public property by the Department of Public Services. The project was a cooperative effort between the City’s Department of Public Services, the Department of Economic and Community Development, and the UMaine Extension and Maine Sea Grant.

    “We know stormwater is an important issue to the community, and rain barrels are a way everyone can contribute to reducing runoff,” said Public Works Director Todd Philbrook. “And gardens appreciate them, too.”

    During a 1-inch rainstorm, about 600 gallons of rain falls on a 1,000 square foot roof.

    “Capturing just a fraction of that provides us with a lot of water for our gardens, and it gets us thinking about the tools we can use to reduce the load on our sewer system,” said sustainability coordinator Jenny Carter. “Every drop counts, and this project allows community members to see how rain barrels work in public spaces and how they could work in our own backyards.”

    Rain barrels installed at home can save the average homeowner up to 1,300 gallons of water each year, according to the release. Maine Water Company is currently offering a Rain Barrel Purchase Program to Maine Water customers, allowing interested customers to purchase rain barrels through Upcycle Products and have them delivered directly to their homes.

    More information on the program can be found here: