Access to water is a human right, and therefore can never be privatized, but not everyone for every city can claim water security.

Water security has been defined as "the reliable availability of an acceptable quantity and quality of water for health, livelihoods and production, coupled with an acceptable level of water-related risks".


Bioswales are linear, vegetated ditches which allow for the collection, conveyance, filtration and infiltration of stormwater. The can also be referred to as "grass swales," "vegetated swales," or "filter strips."


In all of these examples the goal to manage rainwater is to Slow it, Spread it, Sink it.

Capturing, cleaning and containing water also reduces of excess nutrients and pollutants entering rivers and our watersheds. 



Los Angeles River Revitalization 

Many cities are investing in new infrastructure and technology to capture clean and contain the water they do use. The old idea of “get the water off or streets and downstream as quickly as possible” is being replaced with patchworks of reservoirs, bioswales. The Los Angeles River revitalization plan is a good example of forward thinking around water catchment, including a series of ponds to stop, store and sink water into the water table.




BIOSWALE at Your Home

In your home you can do the same. The old practice of making your lawn higher than the street and sidewalk is being replaced with the design of bioswales, whereby concrete driveways and walkways are being replaced with permeable surfaces, and lawns are being dug beneath the level of the street so that rainwater can be retained. This has the added benefit of deep watering gardens and trees.