Lack of clean drinking water is a major problem in under-developed countries.
Rainwater harvesting systems are useful in areas of Africa where rainfall is frequent and access to running water is limited. The idea is simple: Rainwater is collected from the roof of a building, where it flows through gutters into a collection tank where it is filtered and stored for later use. The systems are low in cost, easy to set up and can provide a reliable source of clean water to a lot of people. The cost is typically between $1500-$4000 depending on the size of the tank and type of mounting.
Reserve water tank systems are useful in areas of Africa, where running water is available, but often cut off for days and weeks at a time. The set up involves mounting a water tank on a stand, wall or roof, connecting existing water pipes to the top of the tank and filling the tank when the tap water is running. Piping from the bottom of the tank is used for gravity-assisted outflow of water for everyday use when the tap water is cut off. These systems are low in cost, easy to set up and can provide a reliable source of clean water to a lot of people. The cost is typically between $2000-$5000 depending on the size of the tank and type of mounting.
Hand-dug wells and shallow borehole wells are useful in areas where clean water is inaccessible. They are similar in that they both provide safe drinking water for 250-350 people, but they differ in depth, process and cost. Hand-dug wells can be accessed by hand tools and smaller equipment and are generally 8-20 meters in depth. The cost for Hand-dug wells is about $5000. Shallow boreholes require larger equipment and drilling rigs to reach depths of 35-70 meters and the cost is typically $10,000.