A good combination of NWRMs focusing on rainwater retention both in the residential and the outer areas
Ruzsa is a small village in Hungary, with 2800 inhabitants and a territory of 4800 hectares. The settlement is situated on the Sand Ridge of the Danube-Tisza Interfluve in South-East Hungary, which is the driest part of the country. In this region, the changes in hydrological factors significantly influenced the landscape in a relatively short period of time. The area of wetlands is continuously decreasing, which is a critical symptom of vulnerability
Ruzsa is situated at a relatively high elevation which contributes to increased water leakage and weaker water retention capacity. The key natural and anthropogenic assets that Ruzsa will use for adaptation are as follows: The channel network of the outer areas that have not been used for water retention before.
The effluent decanted water (grey water) of the local waterworks, that till now has been released to the main canal. One of the channels will be converted to a multi-purpose one through water retention engineering structures to provide water.
An upstream end flow control water retention engineering structure and a downstream end flow control water retention engineering structure will be built.
The channel pilot site will be used to test innovative cooperation among the local land users. Ruzsa will coordinate with local farmers to start a local “collective adaptation” to the ‘Greening’ effluent cleaned sewage water (grey water), that has not been retained and infiltrated to recharge shallow groundwater.
Grey water retention measures will be implemented in the outskirts of the residential area of the village. There will be another grey water retention near the local sewage treatment plant.
The sewage treatment plant releases 200 m2 of treated effluent water on a daily basis. This water will be retained right next to the treatment plant (outside the residential area) in a 1 ha pond and it will infiltrate into the groundwater to reverse harmful soil transformation processes and reduce drought risks.
The area of the proposed site is a non-used lowland that used to be a natural depression and wetland before it had dried out. The effluent water will be retained in the pond and the excess water will flow to a nearby channel.
Not only the combination of these NWRMs will be an innovation in Hungary, but also the retention and utilisation of grey water for climate change adaptation will make these interventions a prototype of adaptation measures for the whole country.
The above-listed three elements will allow Ruzsa to demonstrate how local, small-scale NWRM solutions can be combined to improve local resilience.