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‘Cloud to bottle’: Rain as the purest form of drinking water

By Hana Namrouqa - Feb 27,2020 - Last updated at Feb 27,2020

AUSTIN, Texas – With a mission to “help solve the world’s water crises”,a US enterprise is inviting people to join the “rainwater movement,” as it promotes rain as an infinite, sustainable and clean source of water that can be collected almost anywhere.

“From cloud to bottle”, Richard's Rainwater captures, bottles and distributes rainwater, thus becoming the world’s first enterprise to catch raindrops before they even touch the ground. In the process, naturally clean water that is harvested as it falls from the sky is provided to people for drinking in bottles.

The idea behind Richard's Rainwater started when Richard Heinichen installed a whole-house collection system in his own home in Dripping Springs, Texas in 1994. He then started installing similar home rainwater colletion systems for his neighbours. Later, Heinichen obtained regulatory approval, becoming in 2002 the first US Food and Drug Administration-approved bottled rainwater company in the US, said Taylor O’Neil, chief executive officer, Richard’s Rainwater.

The process of bottling rainwater starts when rain hits the roofs, from there it goes into channels to pipes and then a filter and ultimately into tanks, where it is filtered twice more and purified with ultraviolet light before the rainwater is filled in bottles.

Access to clean and safe water resources is the biggest challenge that many regions around the world face, however, much of storm water goes to waste without being collected, O’Neil told a group of journalists participating in a reporting tour on water organised by the State Department’s Foreign Press Centre.

O'Neil underscored that Richard’s Rainwater collects rainwater before it hits the ground and gets dirty, highlighting that the vision of the company is to address challenges caused by the lack of sufficient amounts of water or access to clean and safe water, in addition to addressing the public’s dissatisfaction with municipal water supplies across the globe.

He added that the company bottles pure rain water free from pollutants, highlighting that it does not compete with municipal sources for rainwater used to ensure city’s water supply needs.

“...Rainwater is renewable, it is the purest form of water on the planet,” O'Neil said, noting that water is collected from the roof of sites in Dripping Springs, Texas and Kiln, Mississippi.

“We want to expand to more collection sites,” he said.

O’Neil told The Jordan Times that to sustain the business, Richard’s Rainwater selects areas where drought is uncommon after studying climate and rainfall patterns to ensure sustainable production.

Reaching out to new locations for the colletion of rainwater does not only aim at ensuring constant supply of rainwater but also bottling up rainwater in different parts of the US in order to ultimately reduce the need of transporting bottled water to distant locations.

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